Why building volunteers is so important

One of my biggest beliefs for Worship Ministry in the local church is that we build up the members of our churches to do the work of the ministry. I truly believe that we are called, as members of the body of Christ to be doing the work were commissioned to do by Jesus. The great commission wasn’t directed at professional ministers.

Jesus didn’t even pick trained ministers to do the work of building his Kingdom on the earth. He could have. I don’t see any reason why a Rabbi or Pharisee couldn’t have been drawn to Christ in the same magical way that the disciples were. I believe if Jesus had wanted to, he could have called a teacher of the law to be one of his followers, and he too would have dropped his scroll and followed wherever Jesus led.

But Jesus chose 12 men who did normal things. Ordinary men with ordinary jobs. Sure they were connected and had family, but Jesus chose fishermen and tax collectors.

Then…after he conquered death, hell and the grave…he came back to those same ordinary men who had gone back to living their ordinary lives and commissioned them to go into all the world and make disciples. Jesus told them to go into all the world and find people to train in the same way Jesus had trained them.

This is one of the reasons I believe we have the responsibility of building up and equipping the saints to do the work of ministry.

As Bill Hybels says: “The Local church is the Hope of the world.

It’s not the local church staff that is the hope of the world. It’s the local church. Every light turned on and shining brightly for the world to see.

Why do you think it’s so imperative for volunteers within the church to be doing the work? The reason is really pretty simple. The owners live in the house.

Those who own what they do, live in what they do. Those who know that what they do is a part of something bigger than themselves – have been trained and get to do that work – make it a part of their day to day life. They talk to their families, friends and co-workers about it. They live and breath it. What they do when they serve in ministry in the local church is a part of who they are. They live in the house.

I also believe that a part of doing ministry is doing it in the context of relationship. When we are serving alongside members of a local church, we get to know them and fellowship with them in ways that are only possible within the context of ministry. To make the same inroads in other ways would take twice as long.

But when ministry is done in relationship, the body becomes stronger. When we take that aspect of ministry away, we isolate members of the body, effectively cutting them off from the life-blood of the organization.

Let me encourage you as you go into another week of doing ministry, especially when you may feel frustrated about “having” to use volunteers. (I’ll be the first to admit that it can be quite a challenge at times to manage the personal, family and work schedules of many volunteers.) This is what it’s all about. We do ministry together, we worship together, we proclaim the name together, we share the gospel together. It’s all about loving Jesus together. When we do that, the world notices. When we live in that kind of community, the world wants a taste.

Even better, when we are living that way, we want to share. We want to go into all the world, starting within our sphere of influence, and make disciples.

That’s why building up your volunteers is so important!