The Essence of Coaching – Cultivating a Passion for Developing Leaders
“Faithful leaders will make disciples, but great leaders focus on making other leaders.” -Tom Wood
Here is a simple truth, if leaders are going to grow they NEED someone to coach them. Some leaders will not have a coach so they will turn to books or podcasts to be there coaches. These can be great things but a coaching relationship with an actual human being is way better!
A lot of time leaders serving in churches find themselves overwhelmed by all the stuff that they have to do; as a result the leaders suffer and the ministry suffers as well. Since this is true it is the coach’s responsibility to encourage and support the leader. Sometimes encouragement will take the form of reminding them of who they are in Christ or walking with them along difficulties that they might be having in life. Other times it will take the form of supporting their ministry. You might need to guide them through the skills of leading a Life Group. You can do this by giving them advice, resourcing them, or asking questions to help them think through the issues themselves. Whatever might be the case, the coach’s heart will always have a passion for developing their leaders in whatever way is necessary in that season.
Consider the example of Paul and Timothy. Paul knew the value of coaching younger leaders. As you think through the coaching relationship between Paul and Timothy, a few things jump out. First Paul focused on developing Timothy personally (1 Tim 3:1-13, 2 Tim 2:1). Paul also focused on developing Timothy missionally (1 Tim 5:17, 2 Tim 4:2,5). Finally Paul focused on developing Timothy spiritually (2 Tim 3:14-17). As you can see Paul was deeply interested in developing Timothy’s whole life, and he sought to encourage, equip, and empower him.
The process of developing young leaders begins with knowing those leaders. And I don’t just mean you know what school they go to or where they work, I mean that you know what Jesus is currently doing in their lives. Paul practically lived with Timothy so he knew him well; because of that Paul was able to determine in what specific areas Timothy needed to grown in his leadership. Paul also knew in what specific ways Timothy needed to be encouraged in his spiritual walk. So today lets reflect on the following questions, hopefully they will help us develop our leaders better.
Some Questions to Reflect On:
- What are some ways that your mentors helped develop you in the past?
- What can you learn from your past mentors?
- Did your mentor have an accurate pulse on what God was doing in your life?
- Do you have an accurate pulse on what God is doing in the life of your leader?
- If so what is the lord currently doing in your leader’s life? Where are they growing? Where are they stagnant?
- Where does your leader need to grow in terms of Life Group leading skills?