An Exploration Into Slurping the Volunteers

12 Oct

This blog was written for my church’s blog.

It is quite possible that I spend too much time on social media. Yet, this week, something extraordinary happened on Facebook. I was sitting by my computer when I saw that Scott Devor wanted to get volunteers for the parking outreach. Oddly, the very next item on my facebook timeline feed led me to an interesting blog about getting people to volunteer for things at church.

The juxtaposition of these two items could not have been completely random, could it? Therefore, I will try to persuade everyone to help with this ministry opportunity. First, you should help because it is an amazing opportunity. It is a real way to show the gospel to people in an everyday environment. There are very seldom times where we get to bless someone with something that they “should” and could pay for and then inform them that they do not have to do so. Occasionally, some might get to do something for free in their jobs, but the reality is most of us need the money enough that we cannot afford to do something kind that often. This represents such an opportunity.

That opportunity frequently leads to the question about why a church would ever want to do such a thing, which led to several encounters of testimony sharing last year. It also has led to our good name in the community. In a completely unrelated business deal, someone was talking to me and upon realizing that I went to church asked where I attended. Upon answering Orlando Grace, the first response was, “Is that the church that gave away free parking last year?” When I replied that it was, he immediately asked me to share why my life was so altered that I would go to a church that would do such a thing. Having a good reputation in the community is not only our call and goal, but it is also something we can achieve through this event.

Next, you can realize that the event takes very little skill. Not only can I participate (that means it is easy), but my 8-year-old (last year) son assisted, and his (now) five-year-old sister wants to help this year. There is little skill involved in moving your arms, waving, and throwing out the occasional smile. We have some opportunities where you have to posses some small skill, but this is not one of those. This is a skill that virtually anyone can do, and I think almost everyone should. However, I was moved by Ron Edmondson’s blog, so I want to answer those concerns.

First, I want to ask as clearly and as blatantly as possible. Please sign up for at least one three-hour shift. It will be fun, rewarding, and if you come during my shift, you can go out for steak n shake with Jake and me afterward! If that is not the proper way to ask, please send me a way to augment my request so that it is more “correct.” We have made it as easy as we know to sign up. Go to the spreadsheet linked above and type in your name, or email Scott Devor, or find anyone remotely in leadership and they’ll make it happen for you.

To be clear, your job will be directing people as to where to park. Dependent upon your introversion/extroversion placement, you will be able to talk to people or completely avoid them. It really is not difficult, I promise. The only concern I have not answered from his blog is the saying thank you factor. So, I will personally thank you on the blog, write you a thank you note, and do whatever I can to make your thanks feel authentic. Since no one is as exited about my prop-giving, I’ll try to get PC to say cool things about you when he returns from vacation.

More than anything, however, you’ll hopefully get someone to say something about how great your God must be, and that is super cool!

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