First of all, this is not a post downplaying the importance of women serving in ministry. The truth of the matter is that without all the women that serve faithfully our churches would have a hard time existing. Women have been playing a vital role in ministry since the time of Jesus.
This post is about the fact that many churches have a difficult time getting men to step up to the plate. We often blame men for being slack, unwilling to serve, or even unspiritual. However, I think the reasons men don’t volunteer has more to do with the way we recruit them then the men themselves.
I’m seen far too many volunteer recruiting campaigns go something like this: Someone stands in front of the congregation and talks about how much they need people to serve. The bulletin lists all the positions needing to be filled. The pastor threatens to shut down the 2 year old class if they don’t get enough workers. They dumb down the responsibilities and make it clear that anyone in the pew with a pulse is capable of helping out. Heck, I’ve seen churches dress the staff in crazy outfits to attract adults to serve. Throw in a little guilt, a splash of desperation, a gimmick or two and…Voila!…you’ve just created the romantic comedy of volunteer recruiting campaigns.
Men typically don’t respond when they are asked to join “The Help”. Sure, some men will do it…they may even enjoy it…but the majority of them won’t even give it a shot.
Men are attracted when they are challenged to give their lives to be one of the “300”. Instead of recruiting to a need…call men to action. Instead of inviting them to fill a spot…inspire them to leave a legacy. Instead of asking for less commitment…cast a vision for something beyond the moment and bigger then themselves.
If you want to recruit more men to volunteer at your church…think action movie; not drama or romantic comedy. So, are you recruiting men to join “the Help” or to become one of the “300”? The answer is probably found in the number of men volunteering at your church.