Fall is the best time of the year to rekindle your volunteer’s first love of children’s ministry. Here’s how to help your team stay motivated for the new school calendar:
Cast the Vision. Proverbs 29: 18 tells us: “Where there is no vision the people perish”. It’s not uncommon for long-term volunteers to serve without realizing how their service contributes to the vision of the church. Every volunteer role should tie to the greater vision of your ministry. Bill Hybels in his book, The Volunteer Revolution, states, “Volunteers should be reminded again and again that…the role they’re playing is not insignificant. God treasures every task they perform, every hour of service they render”. Reinforce that message at every meeting, training session, devotion, and written communication that you have with your volunteers.
Transfer the Purpose. Now that the ministry vision has been cast, you need to transfer the vision to every volunteer on the team. A recent survey by Pioneer Clubs—a Christian ministry program—revealed that 75 percent of churches struggle with leader recruitment. “Adults have time. However, they won’t invest that time in children’s programs unless they believe that children’s ministry is a priority with eternal significance,” says Judy Bryson, president of Pioneer Clubs. Each volunteer needs to see how his or her role supports the purpose of the ministry. Connecting outcome to task can make this connection. An elderly woman who assisted with record keeping told me her real motivation was that she prayed over each child’s name as she marked the attendance.
Embrace Your Role. The challenge of this step is to help each volunteer embrace their role as part of the plan to fulfill the vision. When you first build a team your initial role is vision casting—you drive the team to where it needs to go. Once your team is formed you transition your role to that of a coach—and equip the people to successfully take over. If you don’t make that transition you’ll find yourself driving every ministry team which decreases ministry involvement and quickly tends to burnout. Your role is to equip—and your volunteers have the role to be the ministers. When each embraces their unique role you move forward as a team to accomplish the mission.
Recast the vision for serving and help everyone see their unique part for a fresh love for children’s ministry this fall.