I was listening to the Catalyst podcast yesterday as I was driving between the house and praise team practice. As always I’m a few weeks behind on my podcast listening, but I enjoy the interviews Catalyst presents.
This particular podcast was from sometime in July and one of the interviews was with Jud Wilhite who is a pastor in Las Vegas. There were two things they talked about that I thought were especially valuable.
The first was about volunteers. Due to the economic situation in Las Vegas, the church can’t afford to hire all the staff they would like to bring into a paid situation. So, they depend heavily on volunteers. Jud Wilhite shared how they treat their volunteers and seek to honor them. Some of their volunteers are treated just as if they were paid staff. He said they couldn’t do what they do without their volunteers. It was a good reminder of the importance and value of volunteers. I am fortunate to have some great volunteers and need to make sure they are cared for and honored.
He also talked about their approach, highlighting the Belong – Believe – Behave model they seek to follow. Many times in churches, we communicate that the first thing that needs to change is how we behave. Once we behave, then we can belong. In Las Vegas they seek to keep the order of belong – believe – behave. A person doesn’t have to it all together before they are welcome at church. People are invited to have their questions answered and experience the love of God. This leads to belief and then the change in how they behave comes as God works. It was another reminder of how the church should operate and welcome those far from God. It caused me to consider how we do as a church in this area and how I personally look at and treat those whose behavior is not like mine. Sometimes I need help to keep things in order.