We probably haven’t met, but here’s something I know about you: you need writing help. Specifically, you need to find the Emily of your church.
I first met Emily and her family 9 years ago in Moscow (Russia, not Kentucky. I know you probably were confused for a moment). Originally from Florida, they served as missionaries in the Russian capital. Through community events, English classes, and house churches, they worked to reach people with the good news of Jesus.
What’s interesting about Emily is her background: she’s been a high school English teacher for more than two decades. Her Facebook posts are usually related to her love of literature and the Florida Gators. She has a passion for literature shared by many but matched by few.
Her family transitioned back to the US last year, and she’s once again teaching high school English. It’s clear she has a gift for writing, but does she have a way to use it in the local church?
Probably not. I don’t know many churches actively recruiting and equipping volunteers to do writing. Yet it couldn’t be more critical in today’s church environment. Between social media posts, email newsletters, and blog posts, you need lots of words written each week. So why not build a writing team?
Here are 3 reasons why you should:
- We use volunteers for everything else. This sounds simple. But if it were so simple, we would already do it. If we use volunteers to lead worship, teach the Bible in small groups, and lead children, why wouldn’t we use volunteers for writing? We are more willing to let volunteers teach the Bible than write an email. Your job isn’t to do everything; your job is to make sure everything gets done. So do what every other ministry in your church does: find volunteers.
- People have gifts to serve the church. God gives people a variety of gifts. Your church probably has teachers, musicians, builders, communicators, and financial wizards. Oh, and you have writers too. The local church ought to be a picture of unity in diversity: a place where people leverage their unique gifts to serve God and reach people. Ministry is about finding and equipping God’s people to proclaim the story of Jesus and the work of his church. Your role isn’t to do all of the writing and creating; instead, find people in your congregation with unused gifts. Spend less time creating and more time equipping. Soon you’ll find more work getting done and more people serving in the church.
- You can’t do it all. I get it: you’re busy. As a church communications person, your list of responsibilities is both long and wide. You feel the pressure to be both the expert strategist and the one getting the work done. But as I said above, your role isn’t to do all of the work. Does your student pastor teach every class on Sunday morning? Does your pastor teach every adult in a small group setting? No. They equip volunteers to do work they can’t get done. It’s not about laziness; it’s about delegating things to people gifted to do those things well. Stop trying to do it all.
Is this approach different? Yes. Slightly creative? Yep. But isn’t creative part of your job description?