Community Wide Outreach Ministry Course
Robert M. Service Ministries
Introduction and lesson plans 3
Prayer and outreach ministry network activity flow chart 6
Volunteer job descriptions for the prayer & outreach ministry network 7
Initial tasks to complete for jump starting this ministry 8
Sample form for your ministry’s prayer request card creation 9
Prayer and outreach network prayer request intake form 11
Intercessory prayer results record 12
Prayer petition strategies from God’s Word 13
Sample prayer and outreach ministry network volunteer covenant 14
Sample community prayer & outreach network operations guidelines 15
Sample prayer request card stand drawing 16
Some victory scriptures for praying 17
If we have chosen to become a disciple of our Lord Jesus Christ and learn to minister to those around us with our skills, insight, and the knowledge of God’s Word that we have, we are positioned to join with others in our community or rural area and make a difference as doers of God’s Word. Our Father has already given each of us commands, such as Titus 3:14, to minister to people around us, so we should not expect a new and special directive form Him before we minister to every new human need that we find or that comes our way.
There are ways or strategies people have used to reach out effectively in outreach and minimize any obstacles that can occur. By taking only local prayer requests, a new prayer and outreach ministry initiative can go beyond the prayer ministry as they learn to and so choose to do so, without feeling pressured to meet needs beyond their own resources and expertise.
Lesson Plan One
We should begin by studying the prayer and outreach network activity flow chart and the network’s jobs descriptions given on pages 6 and 7 of this course instructions manual. Besides prayer and outreach volunteers, your network will need from three to five core network volunteer administrators. The Certification Coordinator can also serve as the Church Liaison Worker, and the Network Dispatcher could be the Network Records Manager as well. All volunteers can rotate to learn those positions they wish to learn and are comfortable with doing.
Start recruiting members of your own local community prayer and outreach network ministry form your local Christian churches, small groups such as Bible studies, and Christian friends using disciples as much as possible. Page 8 shows the initial tasks we need to do in getting this ministry operating. Once you have enough volunteers to start, vote among yourselves on all the main issues including naming your ministry, the size geographic area you will cover, the ministry’s operating guidelines to be used (see sample on page 15), the types of prayer requests to be taken (phone, mail, e-mail, and drop-box), the first places for placing prayer request card stands, type phone services to use, and the initial network administrators and any advisors. Now form two and three person intercessory prayer teams to handle the incoming prayer requests.
Each student needs to keep their own personal class journal. Record in your journal the decisions about your network that have been made and as they are made in the future along with each network volunteer’s full name, phone number, and personal contact information. Now have each volunteer sign two copies of the network volunteer covenant provided on page 14. One copy goes to the network file, the other copy to the signer. Take volunteers for making prayer request card stands as shown on page 16 from wood, metal, or plastic, and solicit the donation of such materials until found. Decide on a weekly time to meet as a group, or daily if this course is being completed in a full time effort of six daily sessions.
Lesson Plan Two
Your group may fill in your local information and your ministry’s contact details on the sample prayer card provided on pages 9 & 10, and reproduce two sided copies ready to use. Now go in groups of two or three people to public places like cafes, stores, and offices to explain your community ministry effort and ask permission to place the prayer card stands in strategic locations. Share results of your search with all other volunteers at your group meeting and record in your personal class journal. Each intercessory prayer team can distribute 50 prayer request cards per week to their own designated prayer card stand locations.
Go to your pastor, Christian friends, and relatives asking for their ongoing prayer support for this student led prayer and outreach ministry. Record your prayer supporters in your personal class journal. Study the network prayer request intake form on page 11 thoroughly, because it needs to be filled out for each prayer request received by any volunteers functioning as a request taker to then be placed in a secure network file after assigned for intercession. Discuss this intake form at your meetings as necessary, and decide how many levels of confidentiality for the ministry to incorporate in this form’s use.
A level one confidentiality requires keeping the identity of the party needing prayer or help unknown and coded at their own request or that of whoever makes this request. The level nine request would fully publicize the subject person’s identity to appropriate ministry network volunteers when requested by the subject or their parent or spouse. Level five could release first name and location only. Define any other levels of confidentiality you feel necessary and wish to employ at your group meetings, and then record the level descriptions in your own personal class journal.
Lesson Plan Three
If possible, get in the habit of communicating with other volunteers about this ministry on a daily basis, especially for praying with your intercessory prayer team members for assigned requested needs. Also share your questions, understanding, and vision with one another. Whenever a prayer request is made for another person besides the requesting person, their spouse or parent, handle this request as a level one anonymous request unless the subject person personally requests otherwise.
Someone needs to volunteer to identify and record the interests and expertise of each network volunteer as well as of Christians in your network’s service area who have expertise they have volunteered to make available on some basis such as counselors, professionals, skilled trades members, and transportation providers. Another person needs to write a news release about your new community ministry network and get it to all the newspapers and radio stations in your region served, plus to all the volunteers who can then share copies with friends and family.
Consider having a teen prayer line manned by Christian teen volunteers and a network link with a Christian crisis phone line ministry you can locate. Each volunteer needs to study and know both the network’s covenant and its operations guidelines and follow what you have agreed upon to practice in this ministry. Violators of the covenant that break confidentiality or idly gossip need to be suspended from ministry participation for perhaps 90 days on the first offense, and reinstated only after personal repentance. Write your thoughts on the importance of keeping people’s confidence in place along with your own definitions of gossip, pride, and compulsive control in your class journal.
Lesson Plan Four
Another especially important element of this kind of ministry, when personal outreach beyond prayer is done, is for each volunteer is minister only within their own area of and level of expertise. For example, if you can help families in setting up a personal financial budget, don’t try to do the tax planning work of a Certified Public Accountant. The Holy Spirit within you will guide you in how to help in the Biblical counseling with scripture to share just as He leads you in how to pray.
Every volunteer needs to spend time in praying over each prayer request assigned to them doing so both independently and in their small intercessory prayer team. Beyond this, you may also volunteer to give special prayer attention to ministry network shared requests that the Holy Spirit places on your heart and soul, notifying the Network Dispatcher and entering that party’s name or code on your own intercessory prayer record provided on page 12 that can be kept in your personal class journal.
Study the prayer petition strategies given on page 13 and record those you want to incorporate within your own prayer time within your personal class journal. The New Testament apostles generally made prayer declarations instead of prayer requests for healing or deliverance. Remember, however, that the Holy Spirit (according to Lamentations 3:37) is the only one that can declare or bring into being those things that are not, through us. We are always safe to proclaim the Father’s will for someone’s life even when we may not personally know what that is in certain circumstances, and also to ask the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ for our request subject to His will. We do know from scriptures, such as 1 Timothy 2:4, that He desires all people to be saved through His Son, Jesus Christ.
Lesson Plan Five
We learn to minister to human needs by working along side someone with some talent and expertise in specific areas of work or types of ministry, such as marriage counseling or even just learning to give encouragement.
Write down in your own personal class journal the areas of ministry and helping others you feel both an interest in and some ability in. Note your comfort level with each area as well in your journal, and share this with the Network Dispatcher making yourself available for whatever such outreach activity that your network may venture into beyond the prayer ministry.
Your community help network may choose to stay within the prayer only arena for an extended learning period, and only venture into more outreach when there exists a majority of volunteers desiring to do so. Publicly taking ongoing prayer requests will definitely create numerous opportunities to discover and reach out to a wide variety of human needs beyond the prayer. Record in your personal class journal your own ideas about and your willingness about the aspects of outreach to diverse human need in your community.
Lesson Plan Six
Where outreach beyond prayer is to be practiced in this community wide outreach ministry network, using one local church or many local Christian groups, the meeting of physical human needs especially pressing or critical needs often opens up doors to minister to people’s spiritual needs. And most people like to know more about people they can tell actually care for them when there is no personal gain in that caring for them for the helping person. Learn and practice how to pray scripture and record key scriptures to pray such as Psalm 91 and Psalm 103:3 in your journal, writing “I” where the scripture refers to you and “Lord” where it refers to Him. Page 17 has some scriptures to pray and the Beginning Discipleship course does as well.
Seeing answers to our prayers over time is a genuine boost to our faith in God, ministry, and ourselves. We will see some prayers answered immediately, some in days or months, others longer. Expect to be tested in those things you are called by our Father in heaven to learn and to do. Learn to pray for those who have insulted, persecuted, or harmed you in any way asking God for help in forgiving when you can not find it in yourself to forgive someone and for help in assisting someone that is unlikeable.
Record in your journal how God helps you in getting through times of trials and times of challenge. Always guard your own network against personal pride and against any individual or group trying to take complete control of your network as their own, since your network should represent all committed Christians in your community. Remember that the greater the number of volunteer participants within your community wide outreach ministry network, the more extensive the number and kinds of needs that can be ministered to. And these talents and skills are normally sprinkled among the different Christian churches within any given community.
In your own words, write in your class journal how you believe your network could be used as a local platform to do community development work such as building a community supported greenhouse farm to produce food for direct human consumption for your own community.