Over a century ago, a young leader of the Church in India, the Rev. V. S. Azaria...
Throughout the Gospels, Jesus often uses questions to engage those around Him. As someone who truly delights in questions, it is encouraging to see that Jesus values them as well. Intentional questions have a way of gently unearthing that which is settled beneath the surface, creating connections, and developing great purpose. Additionally, when questions are coupled with prayer as a way of understanding God’s plan for our lives, the outcome can be of cosmic proportions. This process has engendered a love of coaching in me. Coaching, in a Christian setting, creates space to ask questions like Jesus did, to pray with another, to demonstrate the love of Jesus, and to glorify Him in the process.
I remember feeling pleasantly surprised after my first coaching session. I did not expect our time to open with prayer, nor did I expect much to come out of it.
However, within minutes of beginning, I knew I had miscalculated. After a powerful moment of prayer, I was asked insightful questions. These questions were so thought-provoking that I began creating solutions to problems that had danced around in my mind. This interaction enabled me to be responsible for my own actions, while being given encouragement to do so. It also provided the confidence I needed to boldly step in the direction God had for me.
A Great Start
The first session ignited a passion within me to work on my certification as a coach. My journey to become a coach began ten months ago. At my initial coach training, I was blessed to learn alongside a handful of other passionate representatives from ECO churches around the country. It exhilarated me to see others who had been similarly impacted by coaching, and wanted to utilize coaching as a means for impacting their ministries for Jesus. I truly treasured the experience.
Entrusted with the tools of my three-day training program, I began to pray about potential individuals to coach under the careful supervision of my coach mentor. While I was in the process of prayerfully considering who I could coach, I experienced a tremendous shift in my thinking. I originally viewed this task as a stepping-stone to arrive at my goal of impacting people. In the end, I realized that I could immediately impact people because I was using insightful questions, paired with the power of the Holy Spirit. It then became an honor to choose two individuals to coach, and I cannot express the joy I experienced spending that time with them.
Now I look forward to the next phase, where I have the privilege of coming alongside other individuals to obtain the hours I need for the next level of certification (based on ICF standards).
As the Body of Christ, we are in a tumultuous season. Despair is broadcasted around the world, Christians are being targeted, and apathy is prevalent. However, one way we can equip and encourage our churches in this season is by developing more coaching relationships within them. I understand that not everyone will have a desire to become a certified coach. Nonetheless, we can apply three main coaching principles in our ministry interactions, whatever they may be, for His glory.
- First: ask more open-ended questions.
- Second: spend quality time with the people God has put in our path.
- Third: actively listen and pray without ceasing.
With these three principles in mind, how will you use them within your congregation and sphere of influence to enable others to become all that God created them to be?