Are you a worker or a volunteer

wowjamI had the privilege of attending a WoW Jam this weekend. I’m not going to go into detail about what that is, you can visit their website for more info. Suffice to say it’s an outreach event where, on Saturday, 240 people gave their lives to Christ and 75 of those were baptized the next day.

The night before the event there was a kick-off rally to get the local workers pumped up and ready for a hard day’s work and Steve Tavani gave a rousing message. As part of that message he said something that will stick with me for a long time to come:

“We don’t want volunteers, we want workers.”

He went on to explain that statement like this:

“Volunteers come when they want, do what they want and leave when they want. Workers come on time, do what they are told and stay until the end.”

That statement is so incredibly true and I started to think how it applies to our attitude toward our local churches and even our personal ministry for Christ.

When you are given a job to do for your church, do you treat that job like a volunteer or a worker? 

Do you do what you can spare the time for or do you treat it as your job and put into it all the time, commitment and priority that you give to any paid job you have?

All too often we treat what we do at church as something we are volunteering for – and therefore they should be grateful that we give them any time at all.

  • If we arrive late, well at least we came, right? 
  • If we don’t want to do something we are asked to do, at least we’re prepared to do something else, right? 
  • If we have to leave early to go watch the game or something, at least we stayed for a while, right?

Is that really the attitude we should have for the valuable work of the Church.

Let’s get even more personal and put it into terms of your personal calling.

We all have something that God is calling us to do, our own personal ministry. Let me ask you this:

Are you a volunteer for God or a worker?

The apostle Paul calls us ‘slaves to God’ (Romans 6:22). Why? Simply because slaves do their master’s bidding without questioning, grumbling, or saying they are ‘too busy’. Jesus told us that when we have done what God tells us to do, we should say “We have only done our duty” (Luke 17:10).

Is that the attitude that you have? Do you treat what God is calling you to do as your duty, your work? Or do you treat it as something you volunteer for and fit in to your schedule when you remember and have the time?

Volunteers find a little time occasionally to ‘help out’ and ‘do their part’ to make themselves feel better.

Workers do what they are called to do because it is their job and they treat it as such, giving it all the time and attention it needs.

So which are you, a worker or a volunteer?