I love our volunteers. We couldn’t do what we do without them. Honestly. They bring so much to the table when it comes to raising and challenging students to grow in the Gospel of Jesus. I think the role of the pastor has a lot to do with growth, yes, but when volunteers share some insights, it’s important. Here is why we need to listen:
They don’t think about the ministry as much as you – When you think about something for a long time, you get blocked. You get stuck. If you are anything like me, you are constantly thinking about your ministry and wondering, dreaming, and scheming on what to do next and sometimes… I don’t know what to do. Volunteers (mostly) don’t think about the ministry as often as you do because they have jobs or class. They have wonderful ideas. They are in the trenches. They are the ones who know students (not saying we don’t) but they know the ebbs and flow of ministry that we miss out on sometimes. Listen.
They don’t see the dirt like you do – Because we think about our ministries a lot, we know the ins and outs of every little thing. Sometimes we get caught up in things that, in the end, don’t really matter. We get caught on the dirt no one else sees and because of this, volunteers can be better relational on days we have services because they don’t sweat the small stuff.
They see things you have become blind to – Because the ministry is something we get paid to run (which is one of the greatest blessings because I can’t believe I get paid to do what I love) we are in it daily. We are in it all day everyday. Because we see certain things a lot, we can become blind to problems. We can be unaware of something happening in our ministry and have no idea. Volunteers are not in it daily. They are in it weekly at least. They have fresher eyes and are able to see things we can’t. Sometimes we need to stop and ask them some questions about what they see.
They come because they choose to be there – If we are honest, because ministry is something we get paid to do, there are moments where I don’t want to do certain things. Just like any job. Something that I am always convicted of is the thought of, “Our volunteers choose to be there, do that event, play that game etc because they choose to be there.” They could be doing any other thing on weekend or midweek but they choose to be there in your ministry and pour their lives into students. This is why they are amazing and crazy effective.
Like I said, I love our volunteers. They teach me a lot of things. I’m grateful for the conversations we have with them and what they teach me about leadership.