An Ever-Widening Circle
Sometimes an “aha moment” happens at the most unexpected time. I had one of those today during a live call in radio show.
Several years ago, our team concluded it was time to stop airing on WVCH, since it was an AM station and “not too many people listen to radio, let alone AM stations anymore.” Can you tell our team is young? When we looked at our budget, Chuck and I had to agree.
Everywhere Chuck and I went, we met people who listened to the broadcast and expressed gratitude for the messages. Listener stories encouraged us that the Lord was in this broadcast but we rarely received financial support from listeners. Our budget demanded that we cut the broadcast.
But God had other ideas. A listener heard our announcement that we would stop airing on WVCH within the month. She begged us to give listeners an opportunity to raise the necessary funds to keep In His Grip on the air. We reluctantly agreed to wait two months but we had low expectations. After all, very few listeners had responded to past appeals. But God had other plans. Within a month, all funds necessary to continue producing new broadcasts and airing In His Grip on WVCH for another year were raised. All of us shook our heads in shock, and wondered what the Lord was up to. For the past three years, In His Grip has been entirely underwritten by listeners. The number of supporters grows every year. Only God could do this!
Every fall we ask listeners to once more let us know if they want In His Grip to continue to air on WVCH. Today Chuck and I conducted a one hour long live call-in show to encourage listeners to give and to give a ministry update. Numerous supporters called to thank us for the broadcast, and to encourage other listeners to support MARKINC Ministries. We enjoyed getting to know our listeners a little better. That’s when the “aha moment” happened. As I was describing MARKINC as a “bread and fishes” ministry, i.e. that our team is tiny but mighty, I realized that the investment of WVCH listeners is making an impact way beyond the local listening audience. These supporters who listen to this little AM station are making a huge eternal impact. We produce a different half hour program for every day of the year because we are airing on WVCH three times a day. Each broadcast is a message designed to help turn hearts toward Jesus. So where is the ever widening circle of impact? Two other stations air those broadcasts at no charge to MARKINC. We also offer the broadcasts at minimal cost on Soundcloud where people who would never listen to an AM radio station find them. iDisciple, a worldwide internet ministry offers the half hour broadcasts on their site free of charge to us. (Because the staff of iDisciple appreciates the quality of the In His Grip broadcast, they will soon offer it at no additional cost to MARKINC), the Ask Dr. Betters videos (6-8 minute vides where Chuck answers hard questions about suffering), our Help and Hope audio library and our new Daily Treasure daily online devotional. Thousands of people subscribe to iDisicple, so the potential audience for these resources is massive.
The "aha" moment? When I realized that God was multiplying the investments of the WVCH listening audience! They are underwriting the cost of air time and the cost of producing these programs for WVCH. Each program they are underwriting is now offered on numerous internet platforms. Those programs on what some think is an outdated AM radio platform opened the door for other MARKINC resources to get wider exposure.
We love our WVCH listening audience! We have been getting to know them more personally, and their stories touch us deeply.
For example, there’s George, who is legally blind, but does wood working projects. He sends MARKINC a gift when he sells one of his woodworking pieces. Then there is Ernestine who “finally got a job” and wanted to send a gift to thank us for the messages. Then there is Leota, a woman in her 80’s, legally blind, unable to attend church any more. Leota says In His Grip is her church. There is one who wants to remain anonymous, whose love for Jesus and the Word compel her to help underwrite In His Grip, “so that others will hear the sound theology that has helped me walk by faith in very hard times.” These are just a few whose gifts humble us and make us more determined to make sure every dollar invested in MARKINC is used to offer the help and hope that only Jesus gives.
We are moved to tears as we see the ever-widening circle of MAKRINC Ministries grow bigger than we ever dreamed possible. Thanking Jesus today for the privilege of helping turn hearts toward Him through the outreach of MARKINC Ministries.
Treasured by Him,