do you like me? if so, check this box - pt 2

Do You Like Me? - Take 2: The Candidate

Stage 1: Identifying the need.

Charlie began his first year as an eighth grade public school student with enthusiasm. Having been home schooled for several years, he wondered what it might be like to launch into an unfamiliar environment alongside people whom he’d never met before. Yet while it would have been easy for him to slip through the cracks, his good looks and charismatic personality brought him to the top of the social circles. When the first school dance was announced, every student started to feel the pressure to attend. Charlie realized he would have to come up with a plan to find his first official date.

Charlie began his first year as a professional minister with enthusiasm. Having been in college and seminary for several years, he wondered what it might be like to launch into an unfamiliar environment alongside people whom he’d never met before. Yet while it would have been easy for him to slip through the cracks, his good-looking resume and charismatic personality brought him to the top of the pile among churches. When the school year ended, every graduating student started to feel the pressure to find a job by the fall. Charlie realized he would have to come up with a plan to find his first official pastorate.

Stage 2: Writing the pitch.

As Charlie sat down to prepare his list of “dream girls,” he knew that his past was in his favor. Having had experience talking with girls in his home school co-op made him less intimidated by the whole process than his peers, not to mention the fact that his older brother was known to be a “cool high schooler.” Taking advantage of this, he planned to send out a vibe to a dozen or so girls that he assumed would go out with him if they were available. He also sent an e-mail to the friends whom he had met over the past month, asking them (with a somewhat cocky spirit) to put the word out that he was “available.” Before going to bed, he perfected the opening line he planned on using in his conversations with prospective girls: “Are you interested in knowing you’ve chosen a date for the dance who is going to spoil you like crazy?”

As Charlie sat down to prepare his list of “dream churches,” he knew that his past was in his favor. Having internship experience with mega-churches made him less intimidated by the whole process than his peers, not to mention the fact that his home church was known to be an innovative trendsetter. Taking advantage of this, he planned to send out a resume to a dozen places that he assumed would hire him if any openings were available. He also sent an e-mail to several pastors whom he had met over the years, asking them (with a somewhat cocky spirit) to put the word out that he was “available.” Before going to bed, he perfected the opening line he planned on using in his cover letter with prospective churches: “Are you interested in knowing you’ve chosen a pastor for your church who is going to spoil you like crazy?”

Stage 3: Contacting the top choices.

Although Charlie expected to hear back from his dream girls within the first few moments of his pitch, the girls only responded with giggles and his social calendar remained empty. Thankfully, though, several students he hung out with let him know of many other opportunities he could pursue in his own homeroom. With a humble taste of embarrassment, he started calling around to connect with these “plan B” girls and began the process of getting to know their unique stories. By the beginning of the following week, he had narrowed his search down to two girls – Fiona and Allison. Rather than letting them know he was considering the other, though, he chose to instead pursue them both until he could find out who would offer the better package socially and physically.

Although Charlie expected to hear back from his dream churches within the first month of his pitch, the phone didn’t ring and his mailbox remained empty. Thankfully, though, several people he networked with let him know of many other opportunities he could pursue in his own hometown. With a humble taste of embarrassment, he started calling around to connect with these “plan B” churches and began the process of getting to know their unique stories. By the beginning of August, he had narrowed his search down to two congregations – First Fellowship and Anytown Community Church. Rather than letting them know he was considering the other, though, he chose to instead pursue them both until he could find out who would offer the better package professionally and financially.

Stage 4: Courting and connecting.

With just two weeks away from the dance, Charlie had set up back-to-back dates with both girls over the weekend. He planned on meeting with Fiona for breakfast at a fast food restaurant, then meeting Allison for lunch at the mall later in the day. As he hung out with each girl, he intended to take note of her strengths and weaknesses. While Fiona had initially seemed the more attractive of the two, her personality and interests were more different than Charlie was comfortable with. Allison, on the other hand, had average looks but could offer a better conversation (especially when it came to stroking Charlie’s ego). While both girls were interested in him, Charlie didn’t have to think about the option much further. He officially asked Allison to be his date to the dance, leaving her overjoyed and anxious to walk through the stores of the mall to find her dress.

With just two weeks away from September, Charlie had set up back-to-back dates with both churches over the weekend. He planned on meeting with the search team from First Fellowship for breakfast at a local restaurant, then driving over to meet with members from Anytown Community Church for lunch later in the day. As he hung out with each church, he intended to take note of its strengths and weaknesses. While First Fellowship had initially seemed the more attractive of the two, the personality and interests of its members were more different than Charlie was comfortable with. ACC, on the other hand, had looked like an average church but seemed as though it could offer a better compensation package (which especially stroked Charlie’s ego). While both churches were interested in him, Charlie didn’t have to think about the option much further. He officially accepted the invitation from Anytown Community Church to be its pastor, leaving the team members overjoyed and anxious to walk through the final process of dressing up the deal.


Stage 5: Expect the unexpected.

It’s interesting what can happen in one day. Just twenty-four hours after meeting with Allison, Charlie received a call from Natalie – the current “it” girl of the school. When he had initially approached her with his infamous pitch, she didn’t know who he was and decided to spend some time finding out through some of his friends. Convinced that he would be the ideal date for the dance, she strategically hinted of the opportunity to go with her if he was interested. To Charlie it was a “no brainer” – he quickly asked Natalie to consider being his date. Not wanting to face Allison, though, he sent her a note the next day during homeroom. It read, ‘Allison – it turns out I’m going to go with someone else to the dance. Sorry. – C”

It’s interesting what can happen in one day. Just twenty-four hours after meeting with ACC, Charlie received a call from Neobrook People – the current “it” church of the country. When he had initially sent his resume with his infamous pitch, they didn’t know who he was and decided to spend some time finding out through some of his references. Convinced that he would be the ideal candidate for their church, they strategically hinted of the opportunity to join their team if he was interested. To Charlie it was a “no brainer” – he quickly shared his desire to start the process of joining the staff. Not wanting to face the search team from ACC, though, he sent them a note via email from home. It read, ‘Dear Anytown Community Church – While I appreciate our time together it turns out I feel God calling me elsewhere. I hope you find the right candidate soon. – Charlie”

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