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How to Know When a Volunteer is Called to Serve

Posted by Linda Cochrane on Mar 25, 2019 6:00:00 AM

April 7-13, 2019 is National Volunteer Week! This is a great opportunity to not only honor your current volunteers, but also re-evaluate how you interview potential volunteers and discern who is truly called to serve at your center. 

Take a moment to imagine with me: 

You just had a successful event. The vision for your center was communicated with passion. Passion is contagious and now you have twenty people who “want to do something.” How do you discern who is really being called? The first sign is when they are willing to go through the rigorous onboarding process.

Many will be surprised that you actually have a process and are disappointed when they can’t start the next day. So when a potential volunteer is willing to complete the application, be interviewed, submit to a background check, sign the statement of faith, agree to the code of conduct, and sign up for training you know they are ready to give you a season of their life. But besides willingness to go through the application and approval process, how do you know if a volunteer is truly called to your center? Here are four steps to help you answer that question.

1)   They willingly acknowledge they are being called. People who acknowledge a calling have heard from God. This is no small thing and action is required to obey this call. In the interview process you may hear, “I think God is calling me” and sometimes He has been drawing them for years. Others will hear the call and answer in obedience to His calling the very first time....

2)   They are willing to sacrifice. There will be sacrifice in order to respond to the calling. Saying yes to something always means saying no to something else. Discern if they will say no to the pleasures of this world in order to fulfill their commitment....

3)   They are willing to suffer. Saying yes to the Lord means they will have fellowship with His suffering. It will mean spiritual battle. All those they love dearly will take some hits because they said yes.  They will become well acquainted with grief....

4)    They are willing to show compassion. Working in pregnancy center ministry means working with those in crisis. Those in crisis are stressed and need someone who cares and who will listen. No one plans to be in a crisis. Extra compassion and mercy is needed. You want your volunteers to be willing to show compassion....

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