The United States Army has recently begun a new marketing campaign to help in both the retention of “mid-grade” NCO’s and in the recruitment of new soldiers. The Army is currently operating with a much depleted force of E-6 staff-sergeants, and the current recruiting quotas have been greatly reduced from last year’s ambitious 80,000 new soldiers. The Army is finding recruiting to be especially difficult in the 21st century, because the old tactics simply no longer work with the new generation. Earlier this year, the Army released its newest slogan “Warriors Wanted,” along with an enormous social media presence to help in possibly reaching the new generation of 18-24 year olds. The preliminary numbers are promising that the current push is working to find new recruits, and retention rates are at a historical high of 86%.
One of the Army’s greatest struggles with trying to attract new recruits is making them aware of the multiple occupations offered in the Army. To counteract the misunderstanding that everyone in the Army is in the infantry, the Army uses a new advertisement – “One Calling; 190 MOSs.” A solider’s MOS is his “military occupational speciality.” The wide range of these MOSs gives the new recruit the ability to show personal interest and find the spot that would best serve him and the overall goal of the Army. The slogan promotes unity among the ranks, while still offering each individual the opportunity to perform/work in an occupation that is best suited to his skills. This is one new tactic currently being used by the USAREC to attract new recruits to the service of their country.
While there are many differences between the recruitment processes of the United States Army and the evangelistic efforts put forth by the Church, there are also some similarities that can be used to the success of both entities. The Army’s advertisement “One Calling; 190 MOSs” can easily be applied to the work of the local congregation. We have all been called through the ONE gospel of Jesus Christ and added into the ONE body/Church. Each individual member of the Lord’s body will have different talents and responsibilities, but the success of a local congregation will be entirely depended upon the individuals working cohesively as ONE unit.
This diversity among the members of a local congregation is often used by the apostle Paul to promote the unity and work of the local church. Paul wrote the brethren in Ephesus –
19 So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints, and are of God’s household, 20 having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus Himself being the corner stone, 21 in whom the whole building, being fitted together, is growing into a holy temple in the Lord, 22 in whom you also are being built together into a dwelling of God in the Spirit (Ephesians 2:19-22; emphasis mine, bcj).
16 from whom the whole body, being fitted and held together by what every joint supplies, according to the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love (Ephesians 4:16; emphasis mine, bcj)
Paul wrote the church in Corinth –
19 If they were all one member, where would the body be? 20 But now there are many members, but one body…27 Now you are Christ’s body, and individually members of it.
The Church is not made up of only one part, but rather multiple parts, which are all able through faith and God’s providence, to become the One body as designed. We find unity in the diversity of talents, skills, and abilities of each individual who comprises the membership of the local congregation. One of the greatest displays of strength and unity in the local church is that there is always room for more participants and members in the body. Everyone who is faithfully submitting to the Father’s will has the capability of helping the overall success of the local church. If you are searching for a place or role to fulfill in the local congregation; ask, seek, knock, and go to work!
The United States Army uses the tactic of unity in diversity to help in the recruitment process of new soldiers. The Church can use this same tactic to help in the evangelism of the lost. There are so many in the world looking for a place to belong and feel wanted. Why can those things not be fulfilled in the Church? All we need to do is teach the gospel and manifest the biblical pattern for the local congregation; the Lord will give the increase. May God bless our efforts in evangelism and maintaining both the work and unity of the local congregation!