One of the biggest things I realized was vastly important when I was in youth ministry was that telling a story was important. Whether to teenagers, parents, or community partners, they were seeing my ministry at some capacity, even when I was not intentionally crafting it. Further, as a social media and blogging manager, this became the primary focus of my job.
The ultimate question was, who is defining what the story is: You or others?
This article helps you to improve how to tell your story better.
None of the ideas below should be done independently, but instead stick with the process as a whole as you tell your church’s story and the story of your congregation members together.
1) Start with a Unique Vision
There is the general aspect of what Christians are expected to do and then there is callings that are given to individuals. It is my own belief that churches (little c) are also given specific callings within communities. We should all be evangelizing, discipling, and worshipping, but within our faith are specific pieces that may raise to the top. For instance, my church wants to serve all of the poverty members of our community in our church service. It is in this uniqueness that the whole body of Christ can be effectively served but also how we can thrive within the Church. What is unique about your church?
2) Set Expectations
Vision without expectations are simply words and when we can highlight an expectation, more people can jump on board with the motivation and passion of your church. Expectations may be very formal in job descriptions for staff or volunteers or they may be flexible from week to week depending upon the needs of the church at that time. What is important is that they are defined and clearly communicated. What are your expectations of members and teams?
3) Highlight Partnerships
We coordinate with local charities, other churches, and even Habitat for Humanity to serve our community well. In these partnerships, we are interacting with the community in very specific ways that is telling our story. Being able to not only communicate that story to our partners in ministry, but also knowing and understanding that these partnerships continue to craft the story. What is being added to your story or should you be added with specific partnerships?
4) Note Experiences
By no means does it have to be a grand production, but share the little things that happen in your church as they happen, including someone who has touched by a sermon, how someone was blessed during worship, or how parents have been uniquely served by the church’s youth group. A good story certainly is well crafted and defined, but it is in the little details that can truly take a story from good to amazing. Do you know the little experiences and details within your church?
5) Share Struggles
I don’t mean to share your complaints or whining but what is truly on your heart. These struggles can be with areas of growth, reaching a specific population within your community, or simply helping a family that is struggling. It is in our humanity that we actually get to be a beacon for the Gospel and so if all we do is pretend to be perfect, we lose that witness to others. What unique struggles does your church and leadership deal with?
6) Have Fun
This is a unique one that gets lost in the seriousness of ministry when we need to do hospital visits or balancing budgets for end-of-fiscal-year. Shooting water guns, flying drones, or playing pranks is always a great moment. No one is going to remember that extra meeting to go over costs and income, but that time we all had a good time over a fun prank war may live in infamy. Not everything is about theology sometimes its about community. When was the last time your team laughed?
7) Share the Win
When someone says yes to Jesus, we should be having a party and sharing it with everybody. Whether video, blogging, or an image, share these stories of your congregation members and add it to the story of your church. When was the last time you shared you were able to share a win and did you share it well?