I’m afraid that most of us in kidmin have amazingly little vision for volunteers.

  • When I began, I led kids 4 years through 5th grade at the little church a few miles form where I went to college. For nearly four years, I ran every Sunday with three volunteers (students I recruited from my dorm).
  • My first full-time gig required hundreds of volunteers that I had scheduled on a once a month rotation, other than the Sunday School teachers who had been teaching for 20 years or more.
  • My third church is where I began casting vision for every week volunteers. About four years later, about 90% of my volunteers served every week.

I recognize now that at every phase, my vision for engaging volunteers needed to be expanded. If I could go back in time, I’d tell “College Kenny” to recruit some adults to help. I’d got back to the early years and explain to myself, “People will do this every week if you just ask them.” At this point, I’d never go back to every other week or once a month schedules.

But I’ve been thinking…

How does my vision for volunteers need to be expanded?

Here’s what I’m thinking. Most of us have had a Volunteer Hero, right? Most of us didn’t ask for them, they just came along. They’re people who just said, “What do you need me to do?” and they did it. Even when it required 10-15 hours a week. They not only put in a lot of time and energy, some of them practically ran an entire ministry. Volunteer Heroes are amazing.

But why do we just wait for them to come along? Why don’t we anticipate them? Why don’t we recruit them?

I know that there are people sitting in our churches every week that have the capacity. They might even have the desire. All they need is an ask. I’m struck by this idea that there are retired CEO’s who are interested in volunteering and my small-mindedness might limit their options to a few weekly roles where they could do something really significant I have invited them.

So, let’s talk about expanding our vision.

  • For some of you, expanding your vision for volunteers might be letting go of some of the things you’re holding on to and letting someone else do it.
  • For some of you, expanding your vision for volunteers might be casting vision for every week volunteers.
  • For others, expanding your vision for volunteers might be going after a couple of Volunteer Heroes.

That’s where I am right now. I’m putting together role descriptions for 4-6 Volunteer Heroes. I’m planning to place some high capacity volunteers who have 10+ hours to give to ministry every week.

How are you going to expand your vision for volunteers this year?