Thinking outside of the box has become another way to say “be creative”. How creative are you? What about your church members? If your members need to be more creative with ministry, there’s ways to properly communicate to them.
And, when referring to ministry, many only think of activities happening inside the walls of their church. That’s why we need to regularly remind those attending, to use their time “inside”, to prepare them to be the Church outside of the church box! Where real ministry happens! But how do you get their attention? And participation?
Whether it’s being the Church to those seeking pregnancy resources, those struggling with homelessness, or ministering to those with deep mental health issues, there are tremendous opportunities for your members to be light in the world that often feels very dark and hopeless.
Be careful though. When your members are not motivated to minister outside of the church, many will often focus inwardly; in spite of being directed to evangelize. Perhaps that’s why Jesus, in one of His final earthly talks, reminded His followers — one more time — to go and make disciples. To get out of our comfort zones and be the church outside of the (church) box.
Here are some communication ideas to get your church members interested in ministry opportunities outside of the church box:
- Make it scriptural. God has called us to be salt and light to the world. If church only happens inside the local church walls, we’re not fulfilling the great commission. There are many biblical passages that emphasize how ministry needs to happen outside of the church. Therefore, regularly share biblical references so that your members understand how following Christ is having Him lead us outside! If your communication is mainly inviting members to attend your events, you’re making it all about you. Instead, talk truth, prepare members, and be aware of “outside” ministry opportunities to encourage them to do on their own (or corporately with other church members).
- Make it personal. When sharing ministry opportunities, think about your members individually. Communicate to their needs and concerns. Connect ministry opportunities to them! Often, it’s easier to motivate someone to act by reminding them of the “why” behind ministry. This may feel counterintuitive but it’s surprisingly true: get people to look inwardly to motivate them to act externally.
- Make it valuable. Rarely will someone choose to do something unless they’re getting a value from it. That can be the value of helping others, sharing the gospel, or encouraging others to be salt and light in the community. As a church, help them understand their benefits. And use their outside ministry to help create your ministries inside. Prepare them for the mission, use them to prepare others, and tell their stories as testimonies. This isn’t about you, the local church, it’s about them being the Church.