The last few months have been some of the most difficult, disheartening, disappointing, frustrating, stressful, and altogether challenging times for individuals who work in the digital communication space. More specifically, this has been true for those of us in church and/or ministry leadership positions. Pastors, elders, teachers, volunteers...everyone has been affected at one level or another. Everyone.
I know what you're thinking. "Gee, that's not exactly breaking news, Josh."
You're right. It's not. And don't panic, I'm not going to waste endless hours dredging up old memories or rehashing past stories about the nightmare of the COVID pandemic and its effect on the Local Church. Besides, most churches have been forced to adapt in new and innovative ways like never before. Others have undergone transformations they couldn't have predicted and are still trying to sail the treacherous waters of confusion, uncertainty, and change.
But whichever the situation, the simple reality is that pressures and tensions have been high for those of us tasked with managing our church's communications, public relations, marketing, and media. We're juggling all of our usual deadlines, design projects, meetings, and answering to our superiors, while simultaneously engaging in crisis management. No wonder we're utterly exhausted.
Under the weight of potential burnout, it can be easy to want to throw in the towel and quit. But take heart! We are literally "surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses" and through God's grace and help can "run with endurance the race that is set before us." (Hebrews 12:1 ESV)
I want you to close your eyes for a moment and summon up your imagination's superpowers. You're a Church Communicator with top-level design skills, right? Using your imagination shouldn't be asking too much. Feeling charged and ready? Alright. Now I want you to picture in your mind's eye the champions of the Christian faith standing as spectators in Heaven. All of the biblical greats are there: Moses, Elijah, Abraham, King David, Ruth, Noah, Jonah, Esther, the Apostle Paul, John the Baptist, Barnabas, Timothy. Of course they're standing shoulder-to-shoulder with guys like Billy Graham, A.W. Tozer, C.S. Lewis, Charles Spurgeon, Martin Luther, and others. If ever there was a Hall of Faith moment in one succinct line-up, this is it.
But, they're not just standing motionless and stoic. David isn't moseying around with his hands in pockets. Paul isn't moping down the streets of gold. Do you know what these amazing men and women of God are doing? They are cheering at the top of their lungs — like an audience at an athletic competition — for you. Yes, you. They are shaking the realms of Heaven with deafening, thunderous applause as you emerge victorious over discouragement, stress, doubt, and defeat! You are an overcomer (1 John 5:4) and you have supporters in the spiritual realm. I won't get bogged down in the theological debate over whether or not people in Heaven can physically see what is happening on Earth, but I believe that we should — at the very least — be encouraged to know we are surrounded by those who have gone on before us in the faith!
Above all else, never forget that, though many here on Earth may not notice you or your efforts for the Kingdom — even people in your own church — God does notice. You are seen by Him and He will continue to use your faithfulness, dedication, and work to affect people for eternity. Your labor is not in vain. (1 Corinthians 15:58)
Everything you do is a blessing. From the endless hours of graphic design to the late night audio/video editing sessions, you are a blessing. For all the research, marketing, analyzing, and community outreach/relations strategizing, you are a blessing.
You are truly a blessing to the very Bride of Christ — The Local Church At Large.
I know some days are harder than others. And some days the temptation to quit is more real than you care to admit. But don't quit. You're far more needed and far more valuable than you realize. And if even just one soul comes to know Christ through your tireless efforts, it was and is worth it in the end.
I'm Here For You.
Need help overhauling your church website? Stuck on how to design or develop better social media graphics? Need help establishing your social media presence? Want some effective strategies on church marketing? Community relations? Book me for a coaching session or request me to come speak at your church about these issues.