Summary: How important is it to get the Gospel out? Is it important enough to use every available means? Join Pastor Steve as he shares how God led him into a radio ministry.
Radio has certainly given an opportunity for the spreading of the gospel of Jesus Christ. We have been able to go into places more quickly than traveling by land or sea. Having a radio ministry has proven effective in our outreach endeavors. It has given us an exposure to 75,000 people each time we broadcast.
A Word of Advice
Beginning any ministry should not be sought-after without prayer. This ministry as well as any other needs the direction, wisdom, and leading of the Holy Spirit. So before you begin a radio ministry, make sure the Holy Spirit is leading you to such a direction.
Our Purpose for this Ministry
When we launched into this ministry, it was for two reasons: (1) We wanted to broadcast the messages from our service to believers so that they might be encouraged by God’s word, and (2) We wanted to give our church the opportunity to reach out beyond our doors with the gospel of Jesus Christ. We have seen the benefits of both. People have requested tapes as well as have visited or joined our church as a result.
What Should We Do First?
I have already mentioned how important it is to pray. No ministry should start without first being saturated by prayer. At the church where I serve, I sought to do that and then when I sensed God’s leading in that direction, I asked my secretary to call a few radio stations to get some basic information. Some of the information that I was searching for was whether there was an availability for a program, the length of programming that was available (5, 15, or 30 minutes), and how much it would cost (The average cost for one program ranges from $75 - $100 per week). We received a callback from WROS AM-1050 in Jacksonville FL. The owner of the station asked if I could come in and talk with him. After scheduling an appointment, I was ready to see what God would do with this ministry. I was asked various questions about the type of program I wanted to air. Did we want to have a live church service? Or would we want to do the program live on the air? Our desire was to air the messages from our church, so in our discussion I was given several ideas of how we might achieve our goals. We also discussed prices for various program lengths and then we concluded our time with prayer. I left there with many things to consider. I knew that what we were looking into called for fervent prayer. I did not want to launch into such an area hesitant of God’s direction, so during the next few weeks I not only prayed, but I also talked with my father to see if there would be any interest of his company supporting this ministry. Because he had shared with me on various occasions of his desire to support our churches ministry, I wanted to explore those options.
After we secured a way to pay for the program, I arranged another meeting with the owner of the station. We had began with the idea of a 15 minute program but during our conversation we were given an opportunity to produce a 30 minute program. This program would be at 9:30 AM on Sunday mornings. We agreed to the cost and the programming and secured the time slot by signing a one year contract. It was during that time we were asked for a name for our program. We decided to call it "By Grace." We used that name for about 6 months and later added the word "changed" to the title to make it "Changed By Grace." By the next week we were airing our 30 minute program.
Producing the Program
We were given various ideas on how to produce our program. I could come to the radio station and produce it in their studio or I could produce it at our church. I chose to produce the opening and closing to the program at their studio. Since I was familiar with recording I used the music to a song I had written called "By Grace." From there they provided the needed guidance and instructed me on what to do next. Later that week I brought them a recording of one of my sermons with the requested length. It wasn’t until about three months later when I decided to produce our own opening and closing to the program from my home. Through time and experience, I have been able to produce the program on compact disc.
Nine Months Later
It has been nine months now since we began our program. We are broadcasting on Saturdays and Sundays for 30 minutes. We also broadcasted a 15 minute program for two months 5 days a week and another 30 minute program 7 days a week. We have received a good response to the program. We have had people call our church requesting tapes. We have also had people visit our church. The greatest joy that has come when one of the families decided to join our church.