VOLUNTEERS ARE VALUABLE

Recently, I was searching the Internet, looking at different church’s worship/tech ministry webpages. While exploring, I came across a church website whose views on worship and technology greatly frustrated me. 

The webpage started out with many lines dedicated to the importance of worship and how music plays a vital role in the worship experience, but as I continued to read, it became obvious that their Worship Ministry (vocal team, choir, and band) was absolutely important. It almost felt like these were the idolized roles in the overall church ministry. As I scrolled to the very end of the page, my frustration turned into raw anger. Without directly quoting the church’s website, it basically said, and I paraphrase, “It’s fine if you aren’t good enough to make the cut for a singing or band position. We have the tech ministry to stick you in. You don’t have to have any experience or any kind of talent for this ministry. We will teach anyone.”

It was at this point that I kind of lost it. Did I really just read that? Did they really just belittle anyone who doesn’t sing or play an instrument and pawn them off on the tech ministry? Do they really view the behind-the-scenes ministries with less value than those that appear on the stage? I quickly asked some close friends and family members if I was overreacting. They each passionately agreed with me that, due to the literary structure of the webpage, they also interpreted that the church put way too much emphasis on their vocal team and band, and completely disregarded the importance of the tech team. To all of us, it felt wrong.

ALL VOLUNTEERS HAVE VALUE

Never once in the Bible does it talk about volunteers in one ministry being greater than another. In fact, quite the opposite! We all serve together. Those that serve in any capacity: door greeters, Bible class teachers, hospitality attendants, facility volunteers, and any other person volunteering his or her time ALL have exceeding value. All volunteers are important in the local church. Without each person doing their part, a church would soon have to close their doors. Volunteers are the true life-blood of the church. There is no telling how many volunteers will be encountered on any given Sunday morning, before anyone ever sees the (also important) volunteer singers on stage!

THE WIDOW’S OFFERING

This reminded me of Mark 12:41-44.

Jesus sat down near the collection box in the Temple and watched as the crowds dropped in their money. Many rich people put in large amounts. Then a poor widow came and dropped in two small coins. Jesus called his disciples to him and said, “I tell you the truth, this poor widow has given more than all the others who are making contributions. For they gave a tiny part of their surplus, but she, poor as she is, has given everything she had to live on.” (NLT)

I realized that this widow had greater favor in the Lord’s eyes than all of the rich put together. To many, she was a nobody, just a poor widow, but to Jesus this unnamed woman was looked favorably upon. How often do we look down upon or overlook ministries that we don’t think are as important?

Do you ever to stop to thank volunteers on Sunday morning? Do you ever encourage them and tell them you appreciate them? This Sunday, I challenge you to thank a volunteer or encourage them. Just because they are not on stage, doesn’t mean that they are not incredibly necessary or valued! ALL VOLUNTEERS ARE VALUABLE!