3 Ways to Encourage Your Church Family to Serve

No matter its context, attendance, or location, every church faces the same challenge:  How do we mobilize our church family to serve? As churches seek to fulfill the Great Commission and effectively minister to the needs in their congregation and the community, there will always be a need for people to serve.

Consider the following key areas as part of your church’s strategy to equip and encourage serving:

The Pulpit

When the church is gathered on Sunday, they need to hear about the Biblical mandate to serve. Jesus said that He “did not come to be served, but to serve” (Matthew 20:28). God’s people need to be consistently encouraged to use the gifts God has given them to serve others. Sermons, missionary testimonies, and highlighting opportunities to serve are all effective methods to use.

Sunday School / Small Groups

Every Sunday school class or small group has opportunities to serve:

  • Class:  What needs are there in the class or group? If a church is going to grow, it will need a new Sunday school or small group leaders.  Does the leader of the group consistently talk about that need? Or are they content with teaching a lesson and never challenging their group members to step up and serve?
  • Campus:  There are many needs in the life of the church. Adult Sunday school and Small groups are typically where new leaders are discovered for other areas of the church. Each group has an opportunity to make an impact at their church by serving.  For example, a Preschool Director will need help checking in children on Sunday mornings. An Adult, Sunday school leader heard of the need and challenged his class to help meet that need. They set up a rotation to help check in the children, making a big difference in the Preschool Ministry of that church. Make a list of opportunities to serve and make it available.
  • Community:  Each Sunday school class or small group can help meet needs in the community. We can get overwhelmed by the number of needs in our community. I encourage you to remember the saying, “Do for one what you wish you could do for everyone.” You can’t meet every need in your community, but there are needs that Sunday school classes and small groups can meet.

New Member Class / Discovery Class

These classes are a great place to begin to teach members about your church’s disciple-making strategy, which includes serving. As part of this class, new members can take a spiritual gifts inventory to identify where they can serve. Make available the listing of volunteer opportunities as well.

These areas are vital to helping church members go from consumers to co-laborers.  The Discipleship Team would love to continue the conversation with you! For more information, please contact the Discipleship team of the Georgia Baptist Mission Board and schedule a consultation. You can also join the conversation on Facebook!

Published February 24, 2021