One of the challenges to my job is finding good help. OK, to be honest the real challenge is to just find ANY help. On any given Sunday morning, I will rely on close to 90 people to make the magic happen. Some of these 90 are major players and many others make up a valuable support team system. Many of these leaders have worked with children for years, yet every week there are a few workers that are experiencing their first look at working with children. It’s a diverse group of people; ranging in age from the 60′s to the 20′s, backgrounds that vary from cotton farmers to college students, and many, many more varieties of jobs, families, and every imaginable difference. In fact the only two things many of my workers have in common is the desire to serve children, and that they love Jesus (and to some these may be debatable facts…).
The real kicker and challenge to working with this many people is that NONE of them are paid. They are an entire volunteer team, and that brings challenges all on it’s own. The other challenge is that I can never have enough of these wonderful people. Every day and every hour another worker is needed somewhere, so I can’t ever stop adding to the team.
While many in my profession and position dread these scenarios I have adopted a different philosophy. I often hear from my main leaders that they wish Pastor so and so would just tell the church we need more help in certain areas. I despise the calls from the stage, mostly out of a fear that people will think the ‘ship is sinking’ and only volunteer to help because they don’t want us all to suffer. I want workers and volunteers that love children, and love their church. I want workers that desire to serve. Workers that simply want to serve those around them. I’ve also found that my attitude towards perceived notions about working with kids can help. I never tell someone we desperately need them, I just ask if they’re involved somewhere else in the church. If not, then I ask them to come observe what we do and maybe share they’re ideas and thoughts on what they see. I guess I’m confident that if they simply see what we do; they’ll want to be a part of our team. And believe it or not, it actually works.
The final thing I’ve come to adopt into my ‘ministry philosophy’ is that while I need workers for my kids; the adults in my church need the kids to serve. Does this make sense? While I need someone to teach classes and setup events, more than that I believe that the gift given to those that serve in my area of ministry is GREAT. It’s life-changing to give your time to someone who needs you. I hear testimonies all the time from those that work for me, and they’re almost always about what they are receiving out of their service.