Friday, December 12, 2008

leading people to give

Galatians 5:13 (nlt) --- For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters. But don't use your freedom to satisfy your sinful nature. Instead, use your freedom to serve one another in love.

Giving is also an act of serving, and I love to see people and hear about people serving.  Honestly, we have some awesome servants at The Community Fellowship .  Tomorrow is our clothes closet ministry (2nd Saturday of every month), and we've had lots of people helping us get ready.

Through watching, listening and sharing this week I have learned so much about how God leads people to serve.  Like the verse above, serving is how we do what God has called each of us to do.

But in ministry and in conversations with other ministry leaders I have heard negative comments about how people aren't serving and aren't motivated to give.  How do you lead people who don't serve to serve?  That is one tough question.  Plain and simple...some people are not gonna serve.  BUT many of those who are not serving simply need to catch the vision, see the passion and spend some time with other folks who are serving in big ways.

Here are some notes from a blog post  by Tim Stevens :

Why would someone volunteer to work with kids, take out the trash, park cars, change diapers, duplicate tapes, mow the lawn, feed the poor or counsel teenagers?

Three reasons people choose to serve...

  1. They see a real need. Someone has shared the vision of helping kids or serving others--and they caught the vision.
  2. They have confidence they can do it. It's in an area where they have a strength, a passion, or both. They aren't being asked to do something that will embarrass them or expose a weakness. It fits who they are.
  3. There's not someone already doing it. That means there are always roles available for new people to fill.

Those are huge thoughts.  What do we have to say?  As leaders, are we building people who serve?  Or, are we guilting people into serving?  Ouch.

I'm hoping some of you reading this today are thinking about getting up off your pew or chair and beginning to serve at your church or even here at The Community.  My heart is to let my passion and vision rub off on other people.  The more people we have serving and giving, the more people we are going to win to Jesus.  Would you agree?

Stevens said that the way we will lead people to serve, for that matter to give, is to make the vision clear (tell stories of lives being changed)Help people determine their strengths and gifts (serving where they are gifted will build passion and excitement), and always have open roles for people to fill (never say we don't need volunteers).  One of the best notes and thoughts I took from this post was that we have to train those who serve with us to look for the next level.  That is to be looking for people that they can encourage to serve and for people they can give their area to.

Where do we go from here?  I want to give you some verses that are consuming my heart as I prepare to preach this Sunday the 2nd message from our LOVE MORE ... EXPECT LESS. series.

1 John 4:19 (nasb) --- We love each other because He first loved us. 

1 John 3:17 (nlt) --- If someone has enough money to live well and sees a brother or sister in need but shows no compassion—how can God's love be in that person?

Mark 6:34 (nlt) --- Jesus saw the huge crowd as he stepped from the boat, and he had compassion on them because they were like sheep without a shepherd. So he began teaching them many things.

lead follower

I was reading an article from a pastor that was sharing his heart for his church family and impacting his community one person at a time...