Stop begging for workers! Jesus never begged for disciples. Imagine if He had…
Just after the Sermon on the Mount Jesus says,
“Oh, before everybody goes, I want you to know we are still three disciples short of our goal of twelve. So if anyone would like to be a disciple just sign-up with Pete. Stand up, Pete, and wave your hand. He’s the one holding the clipboard under the tree. Thank you.”
What would you think if Jesus had done that?
What do you think the people listening to Jesus would have thought if He had done that?
You probably would have thought that it must not be a big deal to be a disciple if all you have to do is sign-up with Peter.
And that’s the point.
The WAY you recruit workers tells people whether or not it is a big deal to be in children’s ministry.
If you believe it is a vital ministry, then act like it. Recruit like it.
Public begging will kill your children’s ministry. It puts the word out that you are desperate for workers and that there is no honor in working in children’s ministry.
When I first started traveling across America conducting Kidz Blitz Live events I would often serve as a consultant for children’s pastors.
One children’s pastor in a growing church in South Carolina told me she could not get workers to help in children’s church on Sundays.
I listened to her frustration and then offered a crazy strategy that worked for me in Tampa.
I told her that if she did exactly what I said, she would have a waiting list of workers in six weeks. (I was guessing about the six weeks.)
She followed my plan exactly. She called me in less than two weeks and told me she had a waiting list!
This is what I told her:
1. Make this announcement word-for-word in the bulletin and in front of the congregation:
“Some have asked why we no longer accept volunteers in children’s ministry. I appreciate that question. It is because working in children’s ministry is too important for us to accept just anyone. Our kids and our Lord deserve the best…
…From now on working in children’s ministry is BY INVITATION ONLY. Thank you for understanding.”
First of all, that announcement didn’t hurt anything because nobody was volunteering anyway.
And more importantly, you have just changed the landscape by making it an honor to be in children’s ministry.
2. Search out the best people in the church.
Do everything you can to identify quality people (adults and teens) who could fill a roll in children’s ministry.
Encourage workers to help you identify other potential workers.
Don’t be intimidated to go after the best in the church.
3. Invite them to join your team.
Avoid the word “volunteer.” Adults hate that word.
Explain your vision. Tell them you need people like them to make it happen.
Give them a three-month trial period after which they can leave if it doesn’t work for them.
The vast majority will accept your invitation and all will be honored you asked.
Why? Because you made it clear that you only invite the best to work in children’s ministry.
Someone once told me—as if it were a criticism—“You’re just trying to build an elite team.”
“You betcha!” I responded.