What’s Your Time Worth?

Leadership / Ministries / Time Management/Organization / Volunteers //

What’s your time worth?


Did you know that according to the Corporation for National and Community Service, about 63.4 million Americans, or 26.8% of the adult population, gave 8.1 billion hours of volunteer service worth $169 BILLION dollars? (


That is crazy – $169 billion dollars, with a B!


I would love to know how many of those 8.1 billion hours were given to local church children’s ministries.


The study suggests that a volunteer’s time is worth $20.85 per hour. I don’t know about you, but my first reaction was that seems high. Maybe it’s because I’m used to a church pay scale rather than a corporate one! When I really thought about it though, I had to admit $20 for an eternal investment is pretty cheap. One hour a week to change a child’s life forever, to introduce them to the Savior, and to plant in their heart seeds of faith – I’d pay a whole lot more than $20 for that opportunity.


If you’re a children’s ministry leader, understand the value of your volunteers and create environments where they can flourish in their ministry to the children.

  • Help them see the potential impact of that single hour…an eternal potential
  • Spend more time looking for praises, counting your blessings, and trusting that some are blessings in disguise
  • Encourage them in their own faith walk so that they are serving from strength rather than from spiritual exhaustion
  • To stretch the hour for greater spiritual impact, partner with the home so that the message of love, hope, salvation, and faith carries with the kids throughout the week
  • Remember that we often don’t get to see the results of our investment. Sometimes we plant seeds, sometimes we water, but we must always trust God for He alone brings growth – I Cor. 3:5-9.

If you’re a children’s ministry volunteer, THANK YOU! And please know that your value in the life of that child is worth a whole lot more than $20!


But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also (Matthew 6:20-21, NIV).


Wishing you a blessed New Year!


Dr. Colleen Derr

Associate Professor of Congregational Spiritual Formation and Christian Ministries

Wesley Seminary at IWU






About the Author

Colleen Derr serves as Professor of Christian Ministry and Congregational Formation at Wesley Seminary. She provides oversight to the M.Div. spiritual formation courses and the MA in Child, Youth and Family Ministry program. Prior to joining Wesley Seminary Dr. Derr has served as Director of Children’s Ministry for The Wesleyan Church and as Assistant Pastor of Fall Creek Wesleyan Church in Fishers, Indiana. She has been involved in local church Christian education for over 30 years. Colleen developed a children’s catechism program for The Wesleyan Church, Building Faith Kids, and a preteen discipleship tool, Explore. In addition, she developed a host of training materials for local church ministry leaders and has provided training and consultation for local churches across the country.