The Good Samaritan, the prodigal son, The Pharisee, and the Tax Collector, The Parable of the Weeds, The Parable of the Shrewd Manager. What do all these examples have in common? They are all stories that Jesus told!
Jesus was a big storyteller. He seemed to love using stories to illustrate a point.
So how do we use this idea in our churches, or even more specifically our video announcements?
We should have a goal or a reason for doing everything we do. Otherwise, we are simply wasting time. The goal of our announcement time is to inspire our visitors and our established congregation to take action and get involved with the things going on at your church. Some of the most effective elements of your announcements are not just the details of an event but instead explaining why people should care.
There’s a food drive going on? Great. Why should I care?
There’s an easter play coming up and you’re asking for volunteer cast? Why would I want to do that?
Now you may be saying “I don’t think people are asking such questions like “Why should I care about a food drive? It’s obvious why they should care! To help the poor get food!”
Actually, people ARE asking that question. Firstly it might be in their subconscious, but secondly, they may already know the value of the food drive and don’t need that question answered for them. These are the people that were going to donate food anyway.
Well, what about the people that wouldn’t have donated food anyway? How do we inspire them to get involved in this great charity event?
Using stories are a great way of doing this and explaining the value in something. Stories not only tend to hold a deeper meaning that triggers an emotion in people, but it also holds people’s attention much better than just facts and details.
We see Jesus using stories all the time. Many of which are just called Parables. Of course, parables are not just stories, these were stories inspired by God to have more of a heavenly meaning behind them. While you may not be preaching a brand new God-given parable in your announcements you can at least use the God-given experiences of your church as a testimony to why people should care and why they should get involved.
See the difference?
Hey, we got our big food drive coming up in a couple weeks and we are asking you to get involved to make a difference in the lives of someone who is struggling to afford their own meals. To drop off your donations in the large donation box just outside the auditorium by February 10th. We ask that you only bring non-perishable or canned goods.
Okay now here is an example where story is included.
Hey, we’ve got our big food drive coming up in a couple weeks. Our church has been putting on this Food drive for the last 50 years and we’ve seen big impacts in the lives of the people we strive to serve. 8 years ago a young family came in need of some food because while both parents had full-time jobs they were unable to keep their pantry full. When they came to our church to see how we could help them, we not only helped provide food for their family but we made it a point to share the gospel with them. We wanted them to understand that God loves them and is looking over them to provide for their needs. Right then and there the mom and Dad, Cindy and Johnathan gave their lives to Christ. 8 years later, Johnathan is not only is able to provide for his family but he is the pastor of a small church plant in St. Louis. It may just be a couple of cans of food, but those cans can change the life of someone in need, not to mention all the people Johnathan get to minister to as a pastor. To drop off your donations, donate in large donation box just outside the auditorium by February 10th. We ask that you only bring non-perishable or canned goods.
See the effect of what a story can do to your announcements? I’d encourage you to take some of the stories and the testimonials of how God is and has been, moving in your church to inspire others to get involved and take action.
A story is clearly a hugely important part of our announcements. It forces us to dig a little deeper within ourselves when writing the announcements, but it’s so worth it. Story, however, is just one ingredient in the grand scheme of your announcements. Click here to watch the Church Video Announcements Formula where I breakdown the necessary elements to every announcement time. And if you’re looking increase the quality of your video announcements, a great way to do that is with B-Roll! What is B-Roll and how do you get it? Allow me to answer all of your questions by clicking this video right here.