5 false assumptions that keep people from serving

5 false assumptions that keep people from serving
October 26, 2011 Sue Brage

“Ministry conversations can hold clues to false narratives about God that, with a little spiritual direction, can be gently revealed and corrected, creating space for spiritual awakening to a God full of grace and wonder.”  Andee Marks

I was rereading Andee Mark’s article, The Un-Interview* this morning. The article goes beyond a typical “interview” process for potential volunteers and challenges us to have meaningful conversations with them. Her thoughts on dealing with “false narratives” really hits the nail on the head, I think! All of us carry false assumptions with us; ideas and expectations about ourselves and about others.

As a leader, we need to recognize these wrong assumptions and start addressing them, in our own lives and in the lives of the people we serve with. Using  Andee’s article as a springboard, I came up with five false assumptions people may have about serving:

1. The church doesn’t need help.

2. They have nothing of value to offer.

3. There are other people more qualified to serve.

4. Serving will require time or skills they don’t possess.

5. They will be asked to serve in an area they don’t enjoy.

Talking about these openly and honestly will help others realize that God may have more in store for them than what they assumed!

What would you add to the list?? Share your thoughts on our blog…


*You can read Andee’s article in its entirety here.


  1. Kelly Stilwell 12 years ago

    I think we need to let potential volunteers know they can “try” a ministry to see if it is a good fit. They think they will get “stuck” in a job that isn’t a god fit. People will LEAVE a church just to get out of a volunteer job that is making them miserable.

  2. Jeff Harmon 12 years ago

    Great post Sue. “Myth Busting” in ministry is a critical conversation to have and we need to equip our leaders with the tool kit to have a powerful conversation where the leader isn’t just “telling” the volunteer the myth isn’t true but listening deeply and asking powerful questions to have them “bust the myth” themselves. It’s far more powerful and lasting of an experience that way.

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