Painting a Bigger Picture for Your Ministry Partners


Painting a Bigger Picture

Do you offer your ministry partners a bigger picture of yours (and their) role in Cru? Does your regular communication consist of sending prayer letters about what you do and maybe a Worldwide Challenge subscription? With Cru’s magazine closing shop in December, you might wonder what you’ll do now to paint a larger ministry picture.

Mike and I have always been at Cru headquarters in tech ministry. Forty-plus years ago, that meant providing help for donations, paychecks, etc., like David’s men staying with the baggage behind the front lines of battle (I Samuel 30: 21-25). Now, our ministries have a closer connection to evangelism and discipleship, but still, we’ve cultivated a mindset and a habit to encourage and inform our team of what is happening outside of our little sphere.

This eighth post in the Byte-size series is meant to help you brainstorm about some simple ideas that you could start doing to help your ministry partners have a larger view of Cru ministry.

Why? Isn’t This More Work?

I understand. You may feel hard-pressed to just get out the prayer letters you’re doing now. Hopefully, I’ll provide enough ideas so you could pick one or two that you’d consider trying. You’ll bless your team and help them grow spiritually.

As a Cru staff member, you should desire to connect your team to the ministry as a whole. They should feel a part of Cru as much as you do. If they were challenged by another staff member, would your ministry partners want to also be a part of their ministry? (Statistically, people who invest in multiple ministries actually invest at a higher rate.) If you left staff, would your team be interested in another Cru ministry to invest in?

Helst,_Peace_of_Münster 750

Gathering the Paints

Of course, you need to know where to find information to share. The quickest thing to do is to follow Cru.org, FamilyLife, AIA, and others, on their ministry’s social media platforms. (Don’t forget Steve Douglass’ new site for Making Your Life Count radio.)

Additionally, go to one of my social media accounts to find a large variety of Cru ministry and staff social media sites to follow:

Painting the Picture

I’m sure many of you have invited ministry partners to join you on campus or to meet at an event. Here’s my additional ideas. They’re not exhaustive…. add your comments of what you’ve done to inform and equip your donor team.

Prayer Letters and eMail

Thank You Notes

  • I’ve created a half sheet with a ministry story, including a closing paragraph of how we are a part of that story as well. This is inserted in every thank you note I write. I change the story in January. Since all our financial partners receive at least one thank you note annually, everyone receives a new changed-life story each year. You could do this more often, perhaps to your top donors.

Social Media

  • I follow over 200 ministry partners on social media. I mainly use Facebook to exchange news and prayer requests. If you don’t like Facebook, but your ministry partners do, prayerfully consider being on Facebook just for them.
  • Share ministry news and posts from
  • Depending on your other social media accounts, tailor what you post and share according to the social site. For instance, Pinterest users are mostly women; LinkedIn has a business feel.

A Not-So-Byte-Size Tip

Consider a blog for keeping your team informed. For ideas on what to post, this link shows you all the Cru topics on our ministry blog, MikeandSus.org. About half of these were also prayer letters.

Don’t forget to invite guest Cru bloggers to write for your site.

(I will be focusing on more blogging help for you in the months ahead.)

The Big Picture

I enjoyed this huge painting, Peace of Münster, when we were in Amsterdam in 2014. I’d take in the whole scene or get up close and imagine the conversation between two of the subjects. Looking today, I might even picture a ministry partner in this painting, like the man with poised pen, who is obviously very engaged with the peace agreement, but just one person in the larger scene.

The big picture you paint for your ministry partners may generate more fervent prayers and more enthusiasm for God’s Kingdom as they learn of all the creative ways He’s working in our world today.

Byte-size series icon

The Byte-size Series:

Each byte-size series post is meant to be easy for you to do.

  1. Priority Inbox for Gmail and using lists in Facebook
  2. Your web presence and your online MO
  3. Email subject lines
  4. Google Apps and search tips
  5. You could afford a tablet
  6. 5 Easy Tech Ideas You Didn’t Know You Needed
  7. Saving Facebook Posts… for Bloggers, Too
  8. Painting a Bigger Picture for Your Ministry Partners
  9. Easy Tips for Cropping Photos with Paint.net
  10. Your eTools for Your Myers-Briggs Type
  11. Facebook Live Is an Easy Ministry Tool

Public Domain Mark
This work (Peace of Münster, by Bartholomeus van der Helst), identified by Sus Schmitt, is free of known copyright restrictions.

NOTES:

  • The Peace of Münster by  van der Helst is on display at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. The painting is over 7.5 feet tall and almost 18 feet wide. This image is available on Wikimedia Commons.
  • The Byte-size series photo is of a 28-pin integrated circuit, CP2102 (USB to Serial chip).

2 thoughts on “Painting a Bigger Picture for Your Ministry Partners

  1. So much wonderful information, my friend. Well done. All in one place. So needed. God has gifted you with ideas of how to truly help us be more interactive with our partners. Thanks, Sus.

    Like

    1. You’re welcome, Dayle! I was hoping this would not be overwhelming, but more of a potluck where readers could pick what they’d like to try… ‘course I’ve overfilled my plate at a potluck more times than I can count. 🙂

      Like

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