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More Slots Than Workers?

Vacancies can alert you to a better way of doing ministry.

In most of the churches I work with I hear, "Every year we have trouble finding enough workers." Rarely do I hear anyone say, "We have too many positions to fill."

Whenever we have more slots than people to fill them, we automatically assume we're short on workers. Could it be that the root problem is not too few workers but too many slots?

Case 1: Cut the pieces bigger

With a growing Sunday school, children's church, and full-scale Wednesday night program, Carla struggled constantly to staff the children's ministries at her Church.

Carla needed 91 workers for the three major ministries. Or she would have, if she had found 91 people willing to work every week. She didn't. So Carla divided some of the jobs into once-a-month obligations. Now she needed 187 workers.

I asked Carla, "Do you have 187 people who feel called to work with children?" She rolled her eyes. Carla knew that some of her volunteers were helping with children only because of the worker shortage. Quite a few were mismatched ...

May/June
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