Episode 006: Maximizing Ministry Offerings & Creating Discipleship Pathways

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June 11, 2018

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EPISODE 006: MAXIMIZING MINISTRY OFFERINGS & CREATING DISCIPLESHIP PATHWAYS

There are LOTS of resources your church has that can help minister to peoples needs at your microsite. Mingo and Esli draw the line between being a Savior and a vessel, and give some practical ideas for how to tether what already exists to your newly established microsite. Mingo also goes on a deep and personal rant on why we should NEVER “love on people” – but rather be very intentional about how we want to love people well. @micrositegirl & @micrositeguy

EPISODE RESOURCES

Check out the links & resources mentioned in this episode:

  1. Esli’s Instagram: @micrositegirl
  2. Mingo’s Instagram: @micrositeguy
  3. The Rock Church website: https://www.sdrock.com/

MEMORABLE QUOTES FROM THE EPISODE

DOWNLOAD THE TRANSCRIPT

Grab your reading glasses and download the PDF here.

EPISODE 006 FULL TEXT TRANSCRIPT

Mingo Palacios:

Welcome everybody to the Microsite Ministry Podcast. My name is Mingo and on this episode we’re going to talk about loving people well. Not loving on people. That’s the worst thing you can do, especially if you’re not in a church culture, and if I come to you and say, “You know what? You and your a eight year old daughter, I just want to -love on you.” You ruined it, right? That’s the worst thing you could say. So in this episode we’re going to talk about how to maximize your church’s major ministry offerings in a way that loves people well. We’re also going to talk about the best practices on how to grow the people that are at your microsite. That’s an intentional, purposeful way to love them well, not just generically love on them. My goal in this episode is for you to never say you’re going to love on people ever again. That’s my goal. Is everybody with me on this? Are you guys with me on this? I’m about to make a case. So, Esli, please tell me what are some of the ways in microsites currently that you know, how teams are maximizing their churches, major ministry offerings?

Esli Medrano:

So, the coolest thing about The Rock church in San Diego is that we have a lot of ministries. We have ministries that can help them with even a simple haircut.

Mingo Palacios:

Yes a haircut ministry, a thrift store, ministry counseling services, whether it’s like a pastor of the day where they just call for a prayer or it’s actually like a certified counselor that they can come and have scheduled time with.

Esli Medrano:

We have our thrift store, they can give us stuff for free for the people that come to microsites.

Mingo Palacios:

Or I even think of like worship gatherings, like special worship nights, membership classes. These are all ways that you can identify what your church has major ministry offerings are and then figure out ways that you can draw bridges to your micro-site, attendees, the members that are at your microsite.

Esli Medrano:

Yeah. And that’s one of the things that I always get that question from churches. They ask me, “So, you were thinking about keeping the people always at microsites and my answer is always no. Because I don’t want them to be on the street the whole time. As much as I love people coming to our microsites, I don’t want to have 1000, 3000 people come into microsites. I’d rather have less people and more people getting into to an actual campus. So I’d rather be the first experience they get in a church and then we take them into my office.

Mingo Palacios:

You could probably describe or you could imagine micro-sites as a gateway to the church. It’s an easy on-ramp to what the church has to offer programmatically and by membership. And don’t mind the noises. Just have the whole team eating lunch right now, which is OK.

Esli Medrano:

And I can smell it.

Mingo Palacios:

Yeah. No, I’m excited. Pass some nuggets.

Esli Medrano:

One of the people that I love, his name is Andrew, that’s all I’m going to say, but he came as a homeless to one of our microsites and he was fed at a microsite, which no longer we do, but he was fed there, he was cared for and people loved him well enough and now he goes to one of our campuses and now he’s one of the security team members there. So that’s what we want to see and incorporate the other ministries incorporate the people that the services that we can provide as a church.

Mingo Palacios:

I do think that people often short change how they serve people. People think that it’s all up to them at their microsite to figure out how to solve everyone’s problem, and I teach this often, if you’re taking notes, write this down. You’re called to be a conduit of ministry, not a person’s savior. I remember so many people who they collapsed under the burdens of the people that were coming to their microsite because they felt like they needed to be their savior.

Esli Medrano:

I think that’s one of the big, big things that happened in microsites. You get to see people who have been abused. Once you start getting into their personal life and you get to see what they bring from the past, it’s really easy for you to lose your step and lose where you are supposed to be and you start thinking of yourself as Jesus and you’re still getting stressed out because you can’t fulfill their needs- what you’re never going to do.

Mingo Palacios:

No. You’re not a savior.

Esli Medrano:

No. And so you start losing who you are-

Mingo Palacios:

And what you’re there to do.

Esli Medrano:

Yeah and who you should be asking people to be focusing on, not on you because you’re not good enough and focusing on Jesus.

Mingo Palacios:

Take this as a note inside of this statement, because people who don’t have Jesus will only see you as their potential savior.

Esli Medrano:

Yes.

Mingo Palacios:

Yeah. I need you to help me. I need you to move this. I need you to intervene. I need you to talk to my husband. I need you to talk to my family. I needed to get me a place to stay tonight, and I remember feeling the burden of that. There’s no way if you have a beating heart inside your chest, you can’t feel the burden, but you have to remember that you as a micro-site or there to give them an experience with Jesus not solve their problems, and I think that it’s a thin line because you have to address people’s problems. That’s what the church is there for, but if you burden yourself to death with solving every person’s problems, one, you’re not going to have an effective site. And two, you’re just never going to lead somebody. Remember the end goal is eternity for them. Not a place to stay tonight.

Esli Medrano:

And you’re not going to be effective at all. You’re not going to make a change.

Mingo Palacios:

Yeah, that sounds really harsh and I don’t want people to take that the wrong way, but you’ll never be able to meet every need of every person. That’s just the bottom line. That’s the only person that that promises that as Jesus himself.

Esli Medrano:

And you have the different people that come to a church knowing that they are broken, but is it different people that you’re going to encounter in a microsite? For sure. You’re going to encounter people who are completely broken, they’ve been mistreated by church somehow, someway, or in their mind they’ve been treated wrong in their mind they’ve been abused by a church. So when they come in here, they think that you’re going to get something different than a church. In reality it is going to be different, but at the same time you have to remember that you’re not going to meet their needs. That’s not the right way to love people.

Mingo Palacios:

That’s good. There’s a, there’s a book called, When Giving Hurts, When Loving Hurts.

Esli Medrano:

Oh, um, yes. When Giving Hurts?

Mingo Palacios:

Bring it up. What is it? Is it When Giving Hurts? Teammates, Google it. When it actually works in reverse, when you think that you’re helping, but you’re actually doing more damage.

Esli Medrano:

Yeah. You’re enabling people.

Mingo Palacios:

When Helping Hurts. Look that book up. That’s a phenomenal book for anybody doing this ministry.

Esli Medrano:

I have it. I can see the cover in my head.

Mingo Palacios:

That’s a good one and it’s a fine line. Like I said, so I don’t want to get hung up on that too much. When we talk about loving people, the difference between loving people and loving on people, loving on people is usually what people say when they don’t know specifically what they’re going to do for the people they’re hoping to love.

Esli Medrano:

That’s true.

Mingo Palacios:

They just go, “I have no plan. I just want to love on people.”

Esli Medrano:

You can’t just love people-

Mingo Palacios:

I remember volunteers will come to the table. I go, why do you want to serve in this miss you? “Oh I just want to love on people.” Yeah, I go, “Well, go back and tell me what you want to do specifically when you come back with a specific way you want to engage in this ministry, then we’ll talk.” You have to do your due diligence to figure out how God made you. We call that shape. Your spiritual gifts, your history, your abilities, your personality, right? Those things make you who you are and you have to bring that to Jesus and say, “How have You equipped me to love people who don’t know You yet?” And I think that serving at a microsite, it has to be personal. It can’t be institutional. You can’t say, “Well, this ministry does this. I just do what the ministry does.” You have to say, “This is who I am personally. I’m good at talking to people surface level. I can get you to feel welcome. I’m quick on microphone. I should be a host.” You have somebody who’s I think of like Anita, right? She will stare into your soul.

Esli Medrano:

Oh she’s amazing.

Mingo Palacios:

She knows how to ask the kind of questions that get you to kind of speak what’s really going on. She’s not afraid to pray for you and the person that you came with in a way that you have a real experience with Jesus. She needs to be on the prayer team. Right?

Esli Medrano:

Yeah and she goes for people too.

Mingo Palacios:

And she’s loving people well. She never came to the table and said, “I just want to love on people.” She understood who God made her to be and she was using it particularly inside the lane of microsites. I understand who God made me to be. I’m using it particularly in the lane of microsites. Esli, you know who God made you to be when you come to the table, you come color-coordinated binders for everybody. You come with a timetable of how we’re going to use our time, any remind us that we need to be on our time, right? That’s a great steward of your gifts in the trajectory of microsites. If you have somebody coming to the table and say, I just want to love on people, your job is to turn them away and say, “Come back to me when you understand who God made you to be. And then we’ll talk about what you can do in this ministry.” That’s my conviction.

Esli Medrano:

Loving people is as easy as knowing their names.

Mingo Palacios:

That’s a great call.

Esli Medrano:

Knowing people is knowing who their spouses are. Knowing if they have kids or not. I’m a kind that takes notes, “Oh, you have a kid, OK, what’s this one kid’s name?”

Mingo Palacios:

Their birthday.

Esli Medrano:

Birthdays. Loving people well enough to just be able to say, “Hey, I remember what I prayed for you. How did that go?

Mingo Palacios:

How is that going? So, so, so important.

Esli Medrano:

Oh I remember the story that you told me about how was that?

Mingo Palacios:

Everything you’re saying Esli is all about specificity. It’s all about being personal. It’s all about being dialed in, not generically saying, “I just want to love on people.” For some tangible notes, if you’re taking notes in this podcast, ways that you can connect people to your church, major ministry offerings, if you’re doing a worship night, consider streaming it for your worship for your microsite community.

Esli Medrano:

Better yet, just take them all.

Mingo Palacios:

Bring them with you. I love that idea for if it’s possible and you can coordinate the transportation for everybody. Make the announcement on Sunday at your microsite, “On Thursday we’re having a worship night. If you want to be on a caravan that goes to the site, we can meet at a particular location. Maybe we’ll pick you up.”

Esli Medrano:

Of course the logistics have to work in your church and your insurance.

Mingo Palacios:

That’s why you bring your logistics person, all of that stuff.

Esli Medrano:

That’s what I’m thinking, insurance.

Mingo Palacios:

But if you got together with a bunch of people and you just said, “Hey, I’m going to bring a bunch of my friends to worship night.” No insurance needed for that. Be insured on your car. I think of like ways that we can help people who were under the standard of living cost of living like poverty stuff. We partnered with our church’s thrift store. We had a thrift store. We had vouchers and in a specified amount of money that between all of our locations we could ride vouchers for specific needs that people could go to the thrift store. I loved when we could send a team member with a person to the thrift store because the conversation that happened from the location to the thrift store and then from the thrift store back to the location that was so rich. It was their personal connection that mattered. Not the things that they got.

Esli Medrano:

So really, an intimate way to bond to someone like what their needs are, how they’re going to get their needs. Oh, I need pants. Oh here.

Mingo Palacios:

I remember one time somebody showed up at microsites with no pants. That was rough and I was like, “Hey, how about we get you some pants?” It was that basic. The need was that real. I mean, you laugh afterwards, but it was a real need. People always ask about benevolence.

Esli Medrano:

Always.

Mingo Palacios:

Do we give money? Do we give money? Do we give money? And I say, you should probably default to your church’s has benevolence policy. You shouldn’t take a special route as a ministry. Oh, we deal with people with great needs, therefore we need a special clause. You don’t ever want to be out of sync with your church. So you follow the same principles that your church rolls out. A lot of times, benevolence is held for people who aren’t members. There’s no reason why somebody at a microsite can’t go through the process of becoming a member. Figure out how to stream those membership classes. Again, figure out how to get them to come to a location. Those are ways that you can maximize your churches, major offerings to the people attending microsites.

Esli Medrano:

And a way to love your people. This is something that I’ve been struggling with because it’s easier for me to just stream like the membership class or whatever. You can, if you could stream everything else, you could but how better way would be to love your people, to take him to where the big churches are for them to experience that, hey, churches, not just on a street. Actually, why don’t I love you enough to take you to take you to a big-

Mingo Palacios:

There’s a lot more people.

Esli Medrano:

Yeah, let me love you enough so you can experience what our church really is about.

Mingo Palacios:

Yeah that’s good.

Esli Medrano:

And how you can-

Mingo Palacios:

And give you a different view because a lot of churches that are engaging in microsites, they have a varied expression, different expressions of how the church gets together. You can love them by saying, “I want to show you a whole other whole new world of what this church has offered.” That’s a great segue as we wrap the last eight minutes of this conversation about best practices to grow the people who are serving at your microsite, right? So we have a commitment to shepherding the people that are volunteering to lead microsites. You love them well by discipling them. Well, there’s no other way around it. I mean, yes, you buy them, or yes, you get them starbucks card or yes, you carve out time in your schedule, but if you can disciple them to be better believers who eventually learn to disciple other people, you will have no better expression of love.

Esli Medrano:

It’s all about what Jesus did for us. Right? What did he do? He asks, come and see. Come and see what I’m doing. Come and eat. Let me, equip you. Let me feed you. Let me teach you. Let me educate you. Let me show you. Let me, let me introduce you to all this stuff, right? That was a common eat and then come and die. OK, now you do it.

Mingo Palacios:

Now it’s yours.

Esli Medrano:

Now it’s yours. I love you so much. Here, you go and have fun.

Mingo Palacios:

Yeah. This is critical, especially for the leaders who loved to lead. The ultimate expression of a mature leader is for them to move out of the ministry. That’s what happened with us.

Esli Medrano:

Yeah. oh hey, we’re working on.

Mingo Palacios:

We’re working on the trailer that we’re streaming from. It’s awesome.

Esli Medrano:

Can you hear that?

Mingo Palacios:

If you heard that. It sounds backwards because my insecurities would say, you have to have me here. I built this. I’m the one that brought this all together. If you lose me, you lose the ministry. That’s the carnal flesh in us as Christians. I think by way of Jesus’s example and by some phenomenal leaders that happen to be in front of me when I was leading microsites, they challenged me over and over and over again, “Mingo. Mature enough to move out of the way, mature enough to move out of the way.” And what that will do is it will allow others to come to the table-

Esli Medrano:

Experience what you experienced.

Mingo Palacios:

And take it beyond what you can take it to. That’s where we have found our overlap, is that there was a pastor brewing in you that was never going to come to surface unless I moved out of the way and let you do that.

Esli Medrano:

Thank you for moving out of the way.

Mingo Palacios:

I’m happy to.

Esli Medrano:

This is the best way you’ve ever loved me.

Mingo Palacios:

And that’s the way that people should be listening. They should be thinking, how do I get out of the way? Literally so that other people who are committed to serving, remember these people are volunteering their time. Esli, you’re volunteering your time.

Esli Medrano:

Oh yeah.

Mingo Palacios:

And now it’s your job to figure out how you get out of the way so that the people that are serving along side of you that you’re holding up, they can move into the fullness of God’s call in their life. It doesn’t always mean professional Christianity, right? Jumping onto a church staff, but the opportunities are usually what mature us and develop us, right? It’s those experiences where you could take the win and everyone go, “Yay, Esli, unbelievable job. We knew you could do it.” Or you go, “You know what? I got four or five volunteers, man I would love for them to experience that.”

Esli Medrano:

I go back to servant leadership because maybe because I’m teaching it at The Rock School of Ministry, I don’t know. Servant leadership is all about giving your life so that others can find theirs. So that’s what I am trying to get the-

Mingo Palacios:

Giving your life so others can find theirs. So good.

Esli Medrano:

Yeah. I didn’t come up with that by the way.

Mingo Palacios:

You can say about.

Esli Medrano:

I can say that.

Mingo Palacios:

If you’re launching a microsite and you do not have a plan for discipling your friends or volunteers well, do not launch a microsite. You cannot decide that you’re going to disciple people later after you start the ministry. My posture, my personal belief is you start with the discipleship process and you let microsites be the excuse; you let microsites be the thing you do while you’re discipling your people. That has to be the way you flow your ministry.

Esli Medrano:

And that’s the structure and you can hear about it in episode two I think.

Mingo Palacios:

And yeah, and I’ll tell you this much too, I had a leader that was so bold he would say, “Mingo, you know what? You’re a great people net-er, you can net people together. You’re a terrible pastor.” Don’t mind all that grinding on the airstream is just being worked on for the next conference.

Esli Medrano:

But that’s how microsite it.

Mingo Palacios:

We’re just in the mix.

Esli Medrano:

We’re just ghetto like that.

Mingo Palacios:

Which don’t miss that statement. You can be a great people person. You can be somebody who can gather a crowd and you can be a terrible pastor. Jesus calls us all to be disciples and then disciple makers. You can’t be a disciple and not be a disciple maker because in the DNA of being a disciple is the multiplicity, the reinvesting in somebody else. That is part definition of being a disciple is to make disciples, so I’m all fired up about it because people think, “Oh we’ll just use sites to get more people. We’ll grow our thing. Our church will have more people. I’ll have a ministry with a lot of people.” And you’re missing the point. The point is to disciple people well.

Esli Medrano:

And that’s what we get also often with the volunteers like, “Esli, I need more volunteers.” Then ah, ring ding ding ding, you haven’t loved than people enough to say, “Come.”

Mingo Palacios:

Well. You haven’t loved them well.

Esli Medrano:

Well. Well and enough to say, “Hey, come over and let me show you what this is about.”

Mingo Palacios:

Watch. Come to my home. Watch what we do. See how we’ve wrestled with what we’re going to do next. Be a part of the pain in dealing with people’s personal lives. As we’re raising up this site.

Esli Medrano:

And when I say enough is a big difference with well enough but when you don’t love people enough, you don’t give them the chance to say, “Hey, I know you might not look like me, but you can get to where I am. Let me love you enough to say I love you enough for you to, you might mess this up-

Mingo Palacios:

You might lead this different than me and you might not lead it as well. Oh my gosh. Actually, I guarantee you that your volunteers will never lead as well as you will lead, but that’s to be expected until they get enough opportunities to lead. Think about how many times you’ve been given an opportunity to lead something. Of course you’re going to be better at it than a volunteer, but that’s your job is to give them enough experience, shepherd it well. I think of the Good Shepherd. We should talk about the Good Shepherd in another episode.

Esli Medrano:

Ok

Mingo Palacios:

But the Good Shepherd anticipates the flock and prepares a place for the flock so that they will get the most out of their time where they’re at. That’s our role as leaders in a ministry is to anticipate the volunteers, not just the people coming to consume off of the ministry, but to say, how do I prepare a place where they’ll consume and grow and feel safe? That’s our job is to protect them as leaders, to protect volunteers, to create an environment of development and growth. That’s how we shepherd well like Jesus. Not, “I have needs. You need to do them. I have chairs. You need to move them. We have site goals. You need to launch them.” That’s the wrong posture.

Esli Medrano:

Right. No and how Jesus loved. He showed, he fed, which means he invested, he educated and then he let you go for it.

Mingo Palacios:

That’s good. I love it. Well, Esli, thanks for helping us define what it means to love people well. I pray that our listeners after this episode will never say, “I want to love on people. Let it never be said again that I just want to love on people. Go back to scripture, if Jesus ever said, “Love on people.” I’ll take it all back. I promise you he didn’t. He loved people well, very specifically.

Esli Medrano:

Yes.

Mingo Palacios:

Also, thanks for helping us understand what it means to invest in a team once you’ve got one, that you don’t use them as slaves, but you serve them as a leader so that their experiences would be even higher, even more rich than your own.

Esli Medrano:

Yeah. You give up your life so they can find theirs.

Mingo Palacios:

I love it. Esli, thank you so much for giving us that perspective. If you haven’t subscribed to the podcast, you better be a subscriber. If you’re running microsites, I’m proud of you. If you are thinking about microsites and this conversation is helping you, don’t hesitate to reach out to Esli or myself. You can find me at, @micrositeguy on instagram. Just direct message me. Esli?

Esli Medrano:

@micrositegirl. Direct message too.

Mingo Palacios:

Easy. We would love to hear what it is that you’re up to and figure out ways that we can encourage you, if not, just by having a conversation over the phone. We love you guys. Thanks so much for listening. We’ll talk to you soon.

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