I love having so many tools at my disposal. Here are 5 tools that I depend on regularly to build our ministry to kids and their families.
1. Social Media: this one to me is a NO BRAINER. Yet, I'm astonished when I talk to other ministry leaders that they don't see the value in creating a social media presence for their ministry. We use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and now Periscope. How it benefits ministry: First it allows us to communicate important information. Perhaps more importantly, is the interaction on a relational/personal level with families. Posting pics of kids, helpful parenting advice, or celebrating our ministry wins gives me instant contact with families many times a week. This then, wracks up a ton of relational currency. (I haven't even mentioned all of the social media chat/support for leaders)
2. Evernote: I could not function without this bad boy. My Post-It Note obsession still exists, however it has been tamed. I have Evernote files running on everything from those who are working in our Sunday morning service as crowd control, to mid-week theme night games. Evernote syncs between your devices enabling me to have the ability to access whatever I need wherever I am. How it benefits ministry: the search is amazing on this thing. I don't even have to remember what I call something. If I want to find Spiritually Significant Happenings 2015 I only have to type in spiritual. Being able to find things at a moments notice and not hunt down literal files is priceless in my "I'd lose my head if it weren't attached" A.D.D. world.
3. MacBook: Let's just get this out there: I. Am. An. Apple. Snob. (I'm also a donut snob. Don't be a hater.) I seriously hang my head in shame when I try to remember life/ministry before my Macbook. To have apps like iMovie, iMessage and countless others, saves me countless hours. How it benefits ministry: it creates amazing, quality images and videos. So much of what we do is media/marketing. The visuals matter. Seriously.
4. Text Messaging System: I am a fan of Remind.com. I know there are better, more advanced systems out there but as of now, I am still using Remind for free. They continue to upgrade their system and options. I can now receive messages back from people that I've group messaged and the reply only comes to me without revealing my real phone number. How it benefits ministry. I am able to send reminders to a ton of people at once. People are way more likely to read my text than they are my Facebook message or email.
5. Word Swag: I am not an artist. My stick figures leave something to be desired. I need all of the help I can get. While I am tempted to drool over those of you who have full time graphic designers as part of your staff, that is not my current reality. So, I have taught myself some things using apps like Word Swag. Word Swag is super easy to use. It was only a few dollars and I'm able to use a ton of their stock images or to import my own. How it benefits ministry. See #3. :) It's graphic design for dummies. What are your "go to" ministry tools right now? I'd love to hear yours.