The 'No' Factor

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#199: “The 'No' Factor”
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Ecclesiastes 3:2-8

2a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot,

3a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, 4a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, 5a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain, 6a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away, 7a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak,

8a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace.

Ecclesiastes 11:1-10
1Cast your bread upon the waters, for after many days you will find it again.

2Give portions to seven, yes to eight, for you do not know what disaster may come upon the land. 3If clouds are full of water, they pour rain upon the earth. Whether a tree falls to the south or to the north, in the place where it falls, there will it lie. 4Whoever watches the wind will not plant; whoever looks at the clouds will not reap. 5As you do not know the path of the wind, or how the body is formed in a mother's womb, so you cannot understand the work of God, the Maker of all things. 6Sow your seed in the morning, and at evening let not your hands be idle, for you do not know which will succeed, whether this or that, or whether both will do equally well. 7Light is sweet, and it pleases the eyes to see the sun. 8However many years a man may live, let him enjoy them all. But let him remember the days of darkness, for they will be many. Everything to come is meaningless. 9Be happy, young man, while you are young, and let your heart give you joy in the days of your youth. Follow the ways of your heart and whatever your eyes see, but know that for all these things God will bring you to judgment.

10So then, banish anxiety from your heart and cast off the troubles of your body, for youth and vigor are meaningless.

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The 'No' Factor

“The 'No' Factor” is episode #199 of the Adventures in Odyssey audio series. It was written and directed by Phil Lollar, and originally aired on July 18, 1992.


Connie learns the importance of time-management skills when she takes on more work than she can handle.


Connie is busy, busy, busy! First, her pastor has asked her to be part of an important ministry, visiting the sick and shut-ins, taking them medicine, and running errands for them. Then, Connie volunteers her time to work in the library at Campbell County Community College. Next, she agrees to be in a play Jack Davis is directing for the Odyssey Parks and Recreation Department. Later, Dale Jacobs convinces her to write an article for The Odyssey Times about her experiences at Whit’s End. Finally, Marsha pleads with her to sponsor their Sunday school class picnic. All this is in addition to her school studies and extracurricular activities, church attendance, membership in the youth group, and her job at a certain ice cream shop and discovery emporium.

To say Connie’s schedule is stretched thin would be an extreme understatement! She attacks each task with gusto and fervor, at first. But as time goes on, more and more details of each task begin slipping through the cracks. Soon, Connie is messing up on a regular basis, which culminates when she forgets all about her commitment to the pastor.

Fortunately, the pastor is forgiving. He even offers Connie a remedy for her situation, something he calls “The ‘No’ Factor”, in other words, learning how to say “no.” It’s a lesson Connie has learned the hard way, and hopefully, she’s learned it well.

This plot section is too short and should be expanded. »

Discussion Questions

  1. Why did Connie take on so many tasks? And why could she not say no to anyone?
    • How could she have avoided becoming over-committed?
  2. Is it wrong to say “no” when people want you to help them?
    • Why or why not?


Heard in episode

Role Voice Actor
Connie Kendall Katie Leigh
Dale Jacobs Phil Lollar
Eugene Meltsner Will Ryan
Jack Davis Donald Long
June Kendall Maggie Malooly
Library patron #1 Will Ryan
Library patron #2 Unknown
Library patron #3 Phil Lollar
Library patron #4 Lynn Luttrell
Library patron #5 Paul McCusker
Marsha Lydia Reissmueller
Pastor David Kirkwood
Mrs. Thorndyke Unknown

Mentioned in episode

Character Mentioned By
John Whittaker Eugene Meltsner
Bart Rathbone Eugene Meltsner
Tom Riley Marsha




Connie Kendall: I have all the time I need to do the things I have to do. In fact the only thing wasting my time right now is Y-O-U. So if you'll excuse me, I have work to do.
Eugene Meltsner: Y-O-U?
Connie Kendall: YOU, EUGENE!!

Connie Kendall: The no factor. Did you come up with that yourself?
Pastor: Just the title. The concept has been around for a long time. And I think you should apply it right away.

Connie Kendall: Hey, do you think I can use the no factor the next time my mom asks me to clean my room?
Pastor: <chuckles> No!

Connie Kendall: <in the shower> AHHHH!! TOO COLD! TOO COLD!! AUGHH! TOO HOT! TOO HOT!!! <on the typewriter> Too hot. That's what I think of Whit's End. Nooo...

Connie Kendall: Wow, I'm gonna be published in the paper! I'm gettin' to be as popular as Whit.