You Are A Light

Dear Christian Radio,

Are you a light?  As a member of the Christian radio community, you probably didn’t hesitate to answer with a resounding, “Yes!”  Of course, most of us in and around Christian radio feel this way; it’s understandable.  We see the light that Christian radio provides and find our worth within that light.  Answering yes to such a question isn’t wrong, but when is the last time you thought about yourself as a light outside of your radio ministry?  

Choosing to only serve inside the radio bubble can drain one’s own personal passion tank.  That’s not to say that Christian radio isn’t a worthy endeavor, but it can be an exhausting one.  Think about it…as radio professionals, we are in high demand and always expected to be ‘on’ for our listeners.  Eventually, we all need a way to refill our buckets.

It is a necessity that we find and do things outside of radio that help us replenish our spirits.  PAR has implemented Impact Days to meet this need for its employees.  These service days are available to any staff member who wishes to serve in ministry outside of the radio bubble.  Impact Days are paid days.  They give staff members the ability to go and serve two times per year in a way that is fulfilling to them.  There is only one stipulation: those who serve must share their experiences with their team.  There are two key benefits to this expectation:

  1. The team member gets to share his or her passion with others.  This helps build the individual’s confidence, personal identity, and rapport with other likeminded team members.

2. Teammates receive inspiration to exercise their own passions.  Learning why someone else chose to serve is motivating.  Learning exactly what someone did offers others a template for their own success. 

This simple expectation doesn’t have to be tedious, either.  Devoting five or ten minutes of your staff meeting to this exercise is all you need.

Recently, I used one of my days to serve at my son’s school during its science day.  This was a perfect vehicle for me, because I am passionate about making a difference in the lives of my kids and their friends.  It was unbelievably refreshing to just go serve as ‘Dad.’  I came back the next day ready to change the world.

Christian radio is frequently given opportunities to work with amazing ministries and organizations that count on us to share their light.  Couple that with your own station’s needs—especially fundraising—and you can quickly become reluctant to take a moment to help anyone else.  But here’s the thing…helping ministries outside of the radio bubble makes you that much more effective when you’re ready to step back in.

Case and point: My experience working with kids from within my own community fueled my desire to help kids who live beyond its borders.  So when PAR partnered with World Concern—an organization that cures children of parasites for a meager .44 cents—I was hooked!  What’s more, our team bought in, too…they loved it!

Renewing your passion outside of the radio bubble will strengthen your light and kindle a fire in others.  As a result, both you and your team will be better prepared to champion the causes of your radio partners and communicate a brilliant message of hope through your station.

Dear Christian Radio…

  1. Remember that you are a light, beyond your radio ministry.  You are a light because God has gifted you and made you passionate about life.  As a leader, you need to serve outside of your station and encourage those around you to serve.

    2. Create opportunities for your station to serve other ministries.  Help them meet their needs. Remind them that they are making a difference and changing lives.  Show them how this gift allows others to continue serving in their own respective ministries.

    3. Love your team well.  Support their passions and remind them that their ministry matters.  Tell them that they are beacons of hope and lights in the darkness.  Encourage them to let their lights shine, and then, have them return from their respite with lessons that are contagious.



Derek Withrow
Director of Impact Services
Positive Alternative Radio

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