February 26, 2024
Coaching, Holy Spirit

How Can Coaching Enhance My Ministry? (Part 2)

A second yet related way in which Christian coaching can be helpful in our missionary and church planting ministry is that it helps draw out what the Holy Spirit has put into the hearts and minds of those we coach. As Dr. Keith Webb says in the Coaching Workshop participant manual: The Holy Spirit is the best source for insights, ideas, strategies and action points. Coaches help the coachee to hear the Holy Spirit more clearly and support them to respond well. I have recently gained a new and deeper appreciation for the crucial role of the Holy Spirit in Christian coaching. One of my spiritual gifts is the gift of helps. Unfortunately, one of the downsides of that gift for me is my tendency to want to help people by “fixing” their problem. You husbands who may be tempted to “fix” your wife when she just wants to talk,… Read the whole post
Church Planting, Leadership, Adult Education, Coaching

How Can Christian Coaching Enhance My Church Planting Ministry?

Everybody seems to be talking about coaching lately, but what is it and more importantly how useful could it be in my ministry? Keith Webb of Creative Results Management defines coaching as, “An ongoing intentional conversation that empowers a person or group to fully live out God’s calling.” The focus of Christian coaching is on the coachee and helping them hear God’s voice in their lives and follow through in obedience. My own coaching journey began when I was coached by a friend and found the process quite helpful in my own life. The ongoing and intentional nature of our coaching relationship was just what I needed to gain clarity and make progress in a key area of my life. As a result, the next time the SEND U edition of the three-day Coaching Workshop was offered, I was one of the first in line to sign up. I too… Read the whole post
Character, Spiritual Formation

Indirect Training?

In the past few days, I have once more recognized how pervasive the problem of pornography is – even among missionaries. A heart-wrenching conversation a week ago, a courageous email this week – all remind me of what J.D. Payne refers to as the pornification of society in Pressure Points: Twelve Global Issues Shaping the Face of the Church. Payne writes, “I was surprised to hear they felt that pornography is now a major issue in the church as well as among potential missionary candidates. Many are now assuming—especially among men—that missionary candidates have used pornography unless told otherwise. When such an expectation—particularly within the church—is commonplace, we find ourselves living in a pornified society.”… Read the whole post
Teaming, Training

Training to Increase Capacity

Earlier in the year, we featured a number of posts by Philip Jackson, a colleague of mine from Macedonia, on the parallels between running a marathon and the Christian life.   In that same vein, I would like to reflect on my own recent experience of training for a half marathon. This has been a huge learning experience for me. I have never been an athlete or competed in any individual athletic competitions since I was required to participate in kids races at Sunday school picnics in my childhood. I jogged in college and in the first years in the Philippines but never ran a single kilometer all those years in Far East Russia. Then about the time that we began serving with SEND U, I started again, simply for the sake of getting some exercise, running 5 km three times a week. That was hard enough, and even last summer,… Read the whole post

The Importance – and Danger – of Language Fluency

From my journal this morning (using the SOAP method):   Scripture:  Genesis 11:6–7 (NIV) – The Lord said, “If as one people speaking the same language they have begun to do this, then nothing they plan to do will be impossible for them.  Come, let us go down and confuse their language so they will not understand each other.” Observation:  Yahweh said that the people building the tower of Babel would be able to do anything they had planned if they were one people and spoke one language.    Given this unity based upon a common language, nothing they would plan would be impossible for them.  Without any language barriers, people are able to accomplish much more than if they speak various languages.    But this ability to accomplish their plans and build impressive structures is not something that God necessarily wants to encourage.… Read the whole post
Missionary Roles, Church Planting

Three Missionary Church Planters

This blog post is contributed by Ted Szymczak.  Ted is a SEND missionary who has served in Poland for several terms, and now champions training for church planters within SEND. — What role should expatriate missionaries play in the process of planting churches among the unreached? Recently I took part in training which opened up a whole new vista in my personal view of this critical issue. Having served in three church plants in the USA and three others in Poland, I thought I knew a fair amount about church planting. But as is often the case, I had more to learn.… Read the whole post
Spiritual Formation, Training

Practicing PRESENCE

Today’s blog post is an abbreviated version of a recent post authored by Dr. Evan Parks. What is behind our desire to develop, grow, and strive to be better? I believe our motivation for growth and change can either be righteous and God-honoring, or it can be based squarely on sin and rebellion against God. There is no end to the encouragement that we find in Scripture to grow. An excellent example is found in 2 Peter 1:5-8: For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. There is a clear emphasis in this passage… Read the whole post
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