Called vs. Volunteer

This was passed along to me from the Kentucky Baptist Convention Worship/Music Department:


In Rory Noland’s book The Heart of the Artist, Rory lists 10 characteristics specifically aimed at comparing the volunteer worship team member to the called worship team member.

1. Volunteers see their involvement at the church as community service, but people called of God see it as a ministry.

2. Volunteers whine about what it is going to cost them, but people called of God are committed to serving God, period.

3. Volunteers shrink back from resolving relational conflict, but people called of God seek to resolve relational conflict for the sake of unity in the church.

4. Volunteers look at rehearsal as another commitment they are obligated to fulfill, but people called of God look forward to another opportunity to be used by God.

5. Volunteers do little outside practicing or preparation, but people called of God come to rehearsals and worship as prepared as possible, on time and ready to serve Him.

6. Volunteers are not open to constructive criticism; they get defensive about it, but people called of God are grateful for the feedback because they want to be the best they can be for God.

7. Volunteers feel threatened by the talents of others, but people called of God praise Him for distributing gifts and talents as He chooses.

8. Volunteers want to quit at the first sign of adversity or discouragement, but people called of God dig in and persevere.

9. Volunteers find their main source of fulfillment in their talents and abilities, but people called of God know that being used of God is the most fulfilling thing you can do with your life.

10. Volunteers cannot handle being put into situations in which they are going to be stretched, but people called of God respond to God’s call with humble dependence on Him.”

As ministry leaders, we are called by God to equip the people to serve. We need to understand the congregation’s viewpoint as they agree to lead and serve in the ministries of the church.  I’ve been in the ministry since 1997 and I am still learning the best way to interact and lead people in a ministry setting.  I pray I continue to stay in the “learning” mindset as the years go on.

On the other hand, congregations must see the called ministers as those called to equip, not called to do all of the ministry work.  I believe it is time to stop thinking of our church people as “volunteers” and begin referring to them as “called ministry leaders”.  And, finally, we, as leaders, should pray heavily that the ones we place into a ministry leadership position are truly gifted and called by God to serve in that area.  Ministries suffer when we fill positions just to fill them, instead of equip gifted leaders into those positions.

Do you agree with the points made in this article?…why or why not?


One thought on “Called vs. Volunteer

  1. Pingback: …a voice crying out in the wilderness… « FBC Picayune Worship

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