I am constantly encouraged by our church members. Your generosity, your love, your faithfulness...the list goes on and on. In this recent challenging season, one of the things that I am very grateful for is your willingness to jump in and help. Many people have asked me and the other staff members what they can do to help. This is very encouraging.
Since Shane leads as one of the pastors, there are many things that can’t simply be handed off to a member or volunteer. This means that I, the other elders, and the staff members need to find ways to clear our schedules so that we can take on some of the leadership elements that Shane has so faithfully done.
For me personally, I believe that I need to focus on two things right now: preaching and member care. That’s it. What this means, however, is that I need to ask for help from people with some of the more “practical” tasks that are important, but can be done by someone else. This principle is true for all the elders and staff members.
So, with that in mind, here are some ways that you can get involved to help and serve. Many of these things may seem simple, but the primary idea is that it frees me and other leaders up to focus on leadership, care, and other church-wide priorities. I know that Shane and Stephanie will feel supported and encouraged to know that people from the church body are rallying to serve each other in love!
1. Prepare the Sermon Slides
As part of my sermon prep each week, I prepare the slides. I do this because I am not a visual learner, and this helps me to think through the sermon from the perspective of those who are. This usually only takes me an hour each week, but right now that’s an hour that I need to make sure is available to the people of the church.
We use Keynote, so the volunteer must either have a Mac, or be able to come in to the office and use one of ours.
This is a time-specific volunteer role. I will send an outline of what should go on the slides by Friday morning, the volunteer must be able to have the slides done and uploaded to Google Drive by Saturday evening at 9pm.
This could be shared between multiple volunteers, so that one person does not have to do it every week.
2. Clean the Office
Each week, Hannah spends time vacuuming, taking out trashes, cleaning out the fridge, and other office cleaning. This usually only takes her an hour or so, but again, that is an hour that she could spend on church admin tasks or kids ministry lesson prep.
Most any time during our weekly office hours would work. However, because our Student Ministry meets on Wednesday nights, an ideal time for a volunteer to help clean is Thursday morning. I’m not saying the students are messy, but…
3. Volunteer in Kids Ministry
We have an amazing team of volunteer leaders who run our Kids Ministry, and Pastor Shane provides elder oversight. However, his wife, Stephanie, is one of the key leaders who serves faithful every Sunday. Obviously, she will not be able to serve or lead for a while. We have other leaders who can fill her shoes, but this leaves less margin with volunteers. I also recently learned two things. First, our average weekly kids attendance is the highest it has ever been in the history of Sound City: 130 kids each week! And second, our volunteer pool is the lowest it has been in at least two years. One factor at play here is that lots of people are having babies, which means more kids and fewer volunteers. This is a wonderful problem to have! But in this season, we could really use your help to love and disciple our children.
4. Drive the Truck and Trailer on Sunday
Pastor Jamin faithfully oversees our marriage ministry, and he spends the majority of his pastoral time meeting with couples of all types: dating, engaged, struggling, wanting to grow, etc. He also faithfully drives the trailer on Sundays so that we can host worship services at Lynnwood High. As a volunteer pastor, however, Jamin has limited time to meet with people. If we can put together a team to drive the trailer on Sunday mornings and/or afternoon, that will free up his time to be able to meet with people that need pastoral care.
5. Lead a Community Group
If you have already been thinking about leading a small group, now is the time to do so. Yes, pastors like Shane care for the church, but Ephesians 4 teaches that the members are to be equipped for the work of the ministry, including care. Right now, we are having multiple new families and individuals showing up and joining our church each week. This is a wonderful thing, but we don’t currently have enough room in our existing groups to place them all! This is a perfect season to work with Myeong on how to lead a group so that people can be known, loved, and equipped for mission.
There will be other ways to help out practically in the weeks and months ahead, even specific service opportunities for the Patrick family. But for now, these are some simple ways that you can serve and help to give some margin to other leaders who will be carrying additional responsibilities in the future.
Love you, church.