by Ted Lowe

If you have been following MarriedPeople, then you are probably familiar with our mission statement/tagline: Helping Churches Help Marriages. We say all the time that we want to make the church the hero. Why? Because we believe that the church has to own marriage——meaning marriage has to be part of the overall church strategy.

As we create resources, we want to make them as plug and play as possible, yet in a way that church leaders can make it their own. This is certainly true as we create resources to help you pull off what we call Larger Group Experiences. These Larger Group Experiences can be one-night events, worship services, and/or retreats.

When we initially created Larger Group Experience resources, we provided a message outline and a message written out word for word. We wanted to make the message preparation as easy as possible for the communicator, yet, once again, giving them full freedom to make it their own.

We didn’’t care if the communicator used 10% or 95% of what we provided, as long as it was helpful. We still provide message outlines and written messages as part of our Larger Group Experiences, and church partners let us know it is very helpful.

BUT, a couple of years ago, some church leaders let us know an outline and written message weren’’t enough. Their staff and volunteers simply didn’’t have the bandwidth to prepare and give messages. So, now we provide not only the message outlines and written messages, but also a video message. This allows churches to simply show the message as a part of their program. This has made it much more doable and works well for many churches.

So if you are wondering if you should show the message or have one of your leaders give it live at your event, we say, “Yes.” We say “yes” to what works for the reality of your church.

We believe ultimately your church leaders have the most influence and credibility with your audience. We also believe that it is okay for your people to occasionally hear from someone outside your church, yet someone your church leader endorses.

The video needs a leader of your church to say, ““Tonight I want you to hear from Ted Cunningham, a pastor/speaker/author. What he has to say was powerful for our marriage, and we think it will be powerful for yours too.”” It’’s as easy, yet as essential as that.

So, should you show a video communicator at your Larger Group Experience for married people? Ultimately, only you can make that decision.

Just remember, if you’’re reluctant to do a Larger Group Experience because you don’’t have a communicator, use the video. It’’s better to invest in marriages by using a video, than to make no investment at all.

And most of all, trust yourself. You know your audience better than we do.