Complementarity

I talked for a long time yesterday with someone who is very active in a nonprofit that runs an art exhibition for high school artists. He described the organization’s work as a “scout” for artists. Colleges pay to see the exhibit each year. It turns out art schools need what the nonprofit makes as much as the artists do.

My friend became enrolled in the nonprofit before he’d met anyone in it or even seen their exhibit. He just heard about it, and on the strength of their guiding idea, he took a day off work to attend a planning meeting. He’s a teacher, and he thought, “I want this idea to exist for my students.” Now, four years later, he’s in charge of a major piece of its operation. It’s almost like he was on board before he’d even started.

What’s the big idea behind what we’re doing in the church, in youth ministry? How do we share it in a way that makes people like my friend say, “I want that to exist for people I care about?” How do we invite people to become enrolled in our mission?

People aren’t blank slates who need convincing that a mission is worth their commitment. Most of us are already enrolled in a mission. Convince us, then, that, by joining you in the things you care about, we advance the things we care about.

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