ALBUQUERQUE (BNM) –The "Jolt" podcast emerged from and continues to be fueled by the vision of several Awaken Church members. They also work to keep it going and keep it relevant.
The one-year-old Rio Rancho congregation is a Baptist Convention of New Mexico church plant. About 300 people attend Awaken.
The church’s pastors did not start the podcast. Instead, congregation members launched it. They still develop and maintain the weekly podcast. Kristi, Kyle, and Casey discuss Scripture, the previous Sunday’s sermon and how those things relate to their daily lives. They avoid using their last names so the podcast’s focus never drifts to them.
Zach had the idea to begin Jolt. Then, he handed it off to Kyle, who has continued producing it. Kyle's wife Kristi joined him in some podcasts; and, listeners commented that they "played well off each other." Kristi was unsure that doing a podcast was something she wanted to do. But, after hesitating, praying and seeking God's will, she continued as a co-host.
Kyle works as a firefighter, and Kristi is a full-time, stay-at-home mother with young children. They invited Casey to join them because they had busy schedules. Kyle and Kristi wanted to have additional people involved to ensure the podcast’s consistency. Casey has served on the team for three months and edits Jolt.
Depending on the sermon topic under discussion, other congregation members and the pastors join the the podcast as guests. Congregational involvement increases awareness and interest in Jolt across the church. It advances the team’s purpose "to not let the sermon end on Sunday, [but] rather [to help it] continue in people's minds throughout the week." Although Jolt's hosts are young working adults, their target audience includes everybody. The discussions deal with issues relevant for young adults, older adults, and even children. The broad audience mirrors the congregation’s diverse Sunday atttendence.
Although based on recent sermons, Jolt’s topics intentionally engage non-attenders, too. The church records sermons so people who missed them can still hear the sermon before listening to the podcast. But, Jolt stands on its own, as well.
When asked to describe the team’s vision for Jolt, Casey answered, "[We want] to see it grow and become more. But, I don't know what that will be. The Holy Spirit will control the direction and future of Jolt." Kristi answered, "[We want] to glorify God and see where He leads us with the podcast. God has the plan. And, we want to follow His plan. Perhaps, He will bring other people to continue Jolt. Or, perhaps, He will keep us here. We are along for the ride." When asked how many people listen to Jolt, neither Casey nor Kristi could answer. Kristi explained, "Our intention is to glorify God, not-self. To be concerned with numbers creates a temptation to glorify the flesh. So, we don't look at the numbers."
To listen to the Jolt podcast; navigate online to awakennm.church/media.