February 2
Networking Recommenders: Missionary Magnets, Candidate Curators

We need more workersBecause there are not enough workers in the harvest.In an interview with a long-term worker laboring among an unreached people group in East Asia today, I asked: "What are the obstacles to the Gospel getting out among this people group?" His answer: "Not enough workers. They are receptive, but they have too little contact with Christians. Especially Christians of their own culture." (But you need workers of any kind--foreign or local--to see those first believers discipled.) Workers aren't that common. And some argue churches should send fewer workers, not more (largely because sending more workers results in quantity at a loss of quality). There are 100 cities in America with populations of over 100,000. (I use America as an example; this can work anywhere else.) If 100 churches in each of these cities each sent one worker to the unreached--that would be 10,000 workers. Double the size of the IMB (and larger than Wycliffe). Yet just one worker per church. and for a city of 100,000, 100 workers represents 0.1% of the population. These are needles in the haystack. How will mobilizers are to find people who are essentially 1-in-10,000? To find needles, you need magnets. So if you are a city-wide mobilizer seeking more workers for the harvest, may I suggest one of your first goals should be to build a network of magnets in the individual churches. You need recommenders. People who are not full-time mobilizers, but who are mission-passionate and regularly around other Christians. People who are can see potential candidates and take them out for a cup of coffee. Curators of candidates. Rather than constantly trying to do things that attract candidates or argue with people about becoming candidates - why not focus on building a network of "candidate radar stations"? Get yourself a list of the churches in your city, and ask yourself: how might I find the mission magnets in each church? The people who will be there for years and will be watching, waiting, praying for potential candidates?