Steve Marr Blog

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Category >> Ministry
Jan 01

Public Speaking Opportunities

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Public speaking is an important opportunity for many to demonstrate leadership, professional credentials, and connect with potential clients or customers. Not every speaking invitation is a good opportunity. I evaluate each opportunity to determine what the Lord would have me do. James wrote, “Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead, you ought to say, ‘If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.’” (James 4:14-15, NIV) The key is to determine the Lord’s will.

Sep 19

Demonstrate Past Success When Fundraising

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Every ministry organization finds raising funds challenging.  While there are predictable down times during the summer, other economic influences also drain our constituents.

I work with several ministries that ask for help with fundraising.  They express their financial pressures in several ways.  “We have a budget shortfall.” “Our support does not allow us to meet our families’ needs.”  “We are a vital ministry.” “We have a dire need.”

Unfortunately, donors do not respond to these messages. They have been giving and are tired of hearing that it isn’t enough.  They may like the ministry concept, but they don’t see much effective change. Many people don’t care about what the ministry “needs;” they need to see transformational change.

Sep 12

Connecting Radio With Your Business Community

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All radio stations, both noncommercial and commercial desire and need to connect with the business community, but most fail. A key reason for failure to fully connect is most stations define connecting with business only on the basis of donations or advertising revenue. A true connection is multifaceted, consistent, and formed with a true spirit of cooperation.

Many business people feel that the only time they hear from your station is when you want advertising or financial support. I believe there are reasons why Christian media fails to connect with business. First, some feel business people are unclean, that they somehow have obtained wealth improperly. Scripture teaches “Both riches and honor come from thee…and it lies in Thy hand to make great, and strengthen everyone.” 1 Chronicles 29:12 NAS). In today’s society there is a lot of “we” vrs “they” attitudes regarding those with financial means. Christ taught that the only dividing line was obedience to Him.

Next, many Christian leaders have wrong motives and miss the perspective that there first priority is to minister to whoever is in front of them at a given time. This must include business people, even when the person is being solicited for support. Often, a business person has needs, genuine friendship, hurts, and spiritual guidance. Look at business persons first as ministry opportunities, and minister to those needs, and blessing will follow your obedience. God can never bless wrong motives.   

Jul 27

Churches Need an Emergency Plan

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Last Sunday a lady passed out at church during announcements. One person thought she merely fainted, while another stood up and started waving to get the pastor’s attention.  A church member called 911; the fire department arrived and transported the woman to the hospital where she received the care she needed.

A life threatening emergency can strike without warning at church.  Leaders should think in advance what action to take. Ushers are an excellent first line response for any emergency during a service. They are in position to assess the situation and connect with medical personnel in the service. Then, these professionals can help determine the next step.

Of course, when in doubt, call for help. Once, a lady collapsed in our home. Two people said, “She just fainted and should be okay.”  However, since she was unconscious and I am not a doctor, I called for an ambulance, which arrived quickly. A neighbor, who was a medical doctor, rushed over when he saw the ambulance pull up. The doctor worked with the EMS crew as they tried to save the woman. Unfortunately, she suffered a brain hemorrhage and died.  While tragic, by acting immediately; we knew that nothing else could have been done. 

On another occasion, a young, 38-year-old man suffered a massive heart attack at work. Several staff had been trained in first aid and administered it while someone else called the EMS. Tragically, this person also died. However, having procedures in place insured that response was as rapid and competent as possible.

Businesses have known they need emergency procedures.  However, churches need to make this a priority as well.  Begin by Identifying members with medical backgrounds.  Make sure that ushers know who these people are.  Also, inform ushers and others in authority where first aid supplies are stored. Be sure to inventory these supplies regularly and update and refresh them as needed.

Simple, basic planning may save a life one day.  Make those plans now.

Jun 07

Presenting Christ Takes Work

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Most things require effort; that’s why we call our jobs, work. When we sit idly by, nothing happens. The house isn’t clean, dinner isn’t prepared, and we can be fired from our paying jobs. We understand that work is necessary to accomplish something.