Life Lessons I learned from Noah’s Ark…
ONE: Don’t miss the boat.
TWO: Remember that we are all in the same boat.
THREE: Plan ahead. It wasn’t raining when Noah built the Ark.
FOUR: Stay fit. When you’re sixty years old, someone may ask you to do something big.
FIVE: Don’t listen to critics; just get on the job that needs to be done.
SIX: Build your future on high ground.
SEVEN: For safety’s sake, travel in pairs.
EIGHT: Speed isn’t always an advantage. The snails were on board with the cheetahs.
NINE: When you’re stressed, float awhile.
TEN: Remember, the Ark was built by amateurs. The Titanic by professionals.
ELEVEN: No matter the storm, when you are with God, there’s always a rainbow waiting.
INTAKE FORM FOR GOSPEL COACHING WITH A DISCIPLE
This form is helpful in establishing a gospel coach and disciple relationship. It facilitates the coach’s getting to know the disciple and establishes a starting point for the journey toward Jesus and his calling in the disciple’s life. Feel free to revise this form to include only questions that will be beneficial for your particular gospel coaching relationship. This list is quite comprehensive and is meant to be selectively utilized.
(1) Tell me about your family [spouse, children’s names and ages, etc.].
(2) When is your birthday? Anniversary?
(3) What makes you excited or feel really alive?
(4) What are some skills and talents that God has blessed you with?
(5) What have been lifelong desires and dreams for you? What is going on with these dreams and desires now?
(6) What are you hoping for in the next six months?
(7) How has God saved you personally? How is he saving you daily?
(8) How would you describe a “perfect day”?
(9) How would you describe a “terrible day”?
(10) How is ministry impacting your family?
(11) How is your family impacting your ministry?
(12) How is your ministry impacting your faith?
(13) How is your faith impacting your ministry?
(14) How is your personality affecting others?
(15) How are others affecting your personality?
(16) How is your integrity impacting others? What people are you influencing both positively and negatively?
(17) How is your character influencing your culture?
(18) How is your character influencing your church community?
(19) How are you developing character in your leaders?
(20) How is your physical health? What does your exercise look like weekly? What do you do for recreation? What does your eating look like daily? What does your sleep and rest look like? Do you have any health issues that affect your life and ministry? How are you dealing with these?
(21) How is your emotional health? How is ministry affecting your emotions? How are your emotions affecting your ministry? What tone are you setting in your home through your emotions? What tone are you setting in your ministry through your emotions?
(1) What area of your character in your personal life are you most convicted about by the Holy Spirit? What do you envision this developed area to look like? How would you describe this area now? What things could you do to develop or grow in this area? What commitment do you have to grow in this area? What has made it difficult for you to see growth or change in this area?
(2) What is currently confusing you about the gospel on a heart level?
(3) What books are you currently reading? What are you learning?
(4) How can I encourage, help, and support you?
(5) How are you making space to be refreshed in God’s salvation in a personal, practical way?
(1) What is holding you back from personal growth in Jesus?
(2) What are you holding on to that is keeping you from being more like Christ?
(3) What current personal failures are most frustrating to you?
(4) What has God accomplished in your character in the last year?
(5) How has God shown faithfulness to you in the last year?
(6) How are you and God doing?
(7) Where do you think God wants you to go in your personal growth in the next six months? Why?
(1) Who do you need to help you?
(2) To whom will you be accountable?
(3) How can I help you?
(4) Where do we really need God to show up?
(5) Where is your heart hard?
(6) What lies do you believe?
(7) What doubts have crept in?
(8) In what ways have you invited unbelief and deception in your personal life? How can I help close those doors?
(9) How will we pray?
(1) How would you describe your personal call?
(2) What people and circumstances are associated with your call to ministry
(3) How and when has your call to ministry been affirmed in your life?
(4) How have others affirmed your call to ministry?
(5) What opportunities do you have to fulfill this calling?
(1) What leadership gifts or abilities do you need to develop to fulfill your calling or current assignment?
(2) How would you describe your current abilities in this area?
(3) What options do you have to develop your leadership?
(4) What will you do to develop your leadership?
(1) When has your call to leadership been challenged?
(2) Under what circumstances have you doubted your call?
(3) Is there anything in this current experience that is causing you to question your call?
(4) What activities or events do you use to anchor, form up, or strengthen your call?
(5) How should your call be focused or clarified?
(6) What does your call’s success look like?
(1) Who have been mentors in your life?
(2) What mentors and coaches do you need now to fulfill your call?
(3) Who else do you need to help you?
(4) What do you need most from God right now?
(1) What are some of the major milestones in your theological development?
(2) What are you reading in Scripture right now? What are you learning about God?
(3) How do you practice abiding in Jesus?
(4) What increases your affections toward God and others?
(5) What deadens your affections toward God and others?
(6) What is causing your anxiety or fear right now?
(1) What are some areas with which you wrestle theologically?
(2) What information are you missing?
(3) How hungry are you to know God?
(4) How dependent do you feel on Jesus in your life?
(1) What discrepancies may be emerging between what your mind knows and what your heart believes in Scripture?
(2) How is the Holy Spirit leading you to grow in your understanding of Jesus?
(3) What does your prayer life look like?
(4) Who are the people in your life you are praying for?
(5) What are you praying for?
(6) What are your prayers revealing about your faith?
(7) Who is effectively bringing you clarity about who Jesus is and about the truth of Scripture? How are you prioritizing these people in your life?
(1) What are you feeding yourself with to feel satisfied outside of Christ?
(2) What current obstacles hinder your spiritual growth?
(3) Who is pulling you away from your relationship with God? How?
(4) Who is planting doubt and discouragement in your heart about Jesus?
(5) What anti-Christian spiritual teaching are you tempted to believe? Why?
(6) What are you allowing to take priority over your relationship with Jesus? Why?
(7) What obedience has Jesus called you to that you have been ignoring or trying to escape?
(1) What opportunities for mission are present in your life?
(2) Who are the lost people God has brought into your life? What does your relationship with these people look like?
(3) What percentage of your time is spent with people who do not know Jesus?
(4) What are your spiritual gitfs?
(5) Describe your current ministry and missional responsibilities? Do these match your calling? Are any of these activities being performed under compulsion?
(6) To what degree do you and your church understand the prevailing culture in your city?
(7) How do you and your church engage the culture?
(8) How do you and your church serve the culture?
(9) How and where do you and your church attract the culture?
(10) How and where do you and your church initiate relationships in the culture?
(11) How is your church perceived by the culture?
(12) How do you and your church receive the culture?
(13) How do your leaders impact the culture?
(1) Where is ignorance in your mission or ministry killing you?
(2) Are you experiencing any physical or emotional burnout? How easily discouraged are you in your mission? How is your patience quotient? Are you easily angered in your ministry? Are yu disconnecting completely from your mission for Sabbath? How?
(3) Which Christian missiologists have influenced and shaped your mission through their writing or preaching?
(4) How would you like to see your church connect with culture?
(5) What can you personally do to connect with culture?
(6) What is working now in connecting with culture?
(7) What other possibilities do you see for you or your fellowship to connect with culture?
(1) What does success in your mission look like?
(2) How will you know when you are accomplishing what God has called you to?
(3) How close are you to that success now?
(4) What roadblocks are you experiencing in accomplishing your mission?
(5) Is the direction you are headed the direction to which you have been called?
(6) Where and how have you and your church been effective in reaching into your culture?
(7) Which of your leaders most impact the culture?
(8) Who are the persons of peace with whom you are connecting?
(9) Where has there been a significant network of evangelistic relationships?
(10) What is stopping you or your church from engaging or impacting culture?
(11) What are one or two things could you and your church do to understand, engage, or receive your culture?
(1) What is draining your energy and sapping life from you in your mission?
(2) Who is attacking your mission — intentionally or unintentionally?
(3) What voices of discouragement are you listening to?
(4) What personal sins are hindering your mission and calling?
(5) Where are you allowing cowardice to hinder your mission and leadership?
(6) Where are you charging ahead of the Holy Spirit in your own strength?
(7) Who has sinned against you, and how is it affecting the mission?
(8) Who have you sinned against, and how have you dealt with it?
(9) What keeps rising up to distract you and your people from the mission?
(10) What risks are you willing to take to demonstrate dependence on God?
(11) What can help you understand your culture?
(12) Where do you most need God’s help?
(13) How are you praying for needs in the culture?
*SOURCE: Adapted from Appendix 2 in Gospel Coach: Shepherding Leaders to Glorify God by Scott Thomas and Tom Wood. Wheaton: Crossway Books, 2013.
*By Scott Thomas and Tom Wood
The following questions can be used to protect a disciple in his leadership skills and development. Each section can take up to one hour to discuss between a coach and a disciple.
(1) How are you unique? (calling, gifts, passions, personality, experiences, sin patterns)
(2) How do you stay inspired? How often do you practice this?
(3) How do you apply the gospel to yourself? What is the message in your mind?
(4) What are the rythms of grace in your life? (Scripture, worship, prayer, community, family, time off)
(5) What idols compete for your worship? How do you forsake each idol?
(6) What sinful mental images repeatedly play in your head? How do you take those thoughts captive?
(7) How are you stewarding the gifts you have for the greatest benefit? (time, resources, skills)
(1) Who understands you best? Other than your family, who are the people with whom you share life together? (2 Timothy 2:2)
(2) Whom do you pray for? What specific petitions are you praying for them?
(3) Who would you like to choose to become one of your influencer friends? What is your plan for making this happen?
(4) How are you telling “truth in love” to the people under your leadership? When do you “spin” something?
(5) How faithful are you in being on time and following through with promises?
(6) Do you say yes and no with clarity so that it builds confidence and trust?
(7) Whom are the people you tend to try to please and why?
(8) How are you discipling each of your children and your spouse (if applicable)?
(9) Who really knows you?
(10) What relationships are broken in your life? What are you doing to bring reconciliation?
(1) How has God called you to serve him? How are you fulfilling this calling?
(2) What things nudge you away from following your calling?
(3) What is the most pressing leadership issue you are currently facing?
(4) Do people in your leadership area know with clarity what you expect of them?
(5) What are you doing well in your leadership? What needs your attention?
(6) How do you encourage those you are leading to follow the objectives of your organization?
(7) In what ways do you personify your calling?
(8) What opportunities did you decline for the sake of fulfilling your objectives?
(9) What are the stories that define the culture of your leadership area? How do you capture these stories? How are the stories being shared?
(1) Who is your team? (roles, styles)
(2) Who is going to replace you?
(3) How do you demonstrate your love for each team member?
(4) What dysfunctions in your team are you addressing?
(5) With whom do you sense the most synergy? How can you maximize this?
(6) With whom do you sense the least synergy? Why? How are you minimizing this?
(7) Whom do you struggle to trust? Why? How do you address issues of distrust with them?
(8) What inspires each team member? (Ask each one, “What aspect of your work brings you the most joy, and what stories do you tend to tell most often?)
(9) How do you empower your team members to exercise their greatest gifts and talents on the team?
(1) What does faithfulness in your calling look like for you?
(2) In which young leaders are you investing your life to develop?
(3) How are you making disciples?
(4) How are you equipping others to serve Jesus’ church more effectively?
(5) How are you living in a missional way?
*SOURCE: Scott Thomas and Tom Wood. Gospel Coach. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2013, Appendix 3.
By Brian Dodd
“It’s no surprise that Texas is producing athletic innovation. You’ve seen a similar spirit of innovation in Texas’s business world…It’s a place where thinking differently is valued and produces results.” – Jay Greene, Department of Education Reform, Arkansas University
As pastors and Christian leaders we are constantly focused on raising up the next generation of leaders. Much like Texas athletics, we need different thinking to produce better results.
Recently I was reading a September 30th Sports Illustrated article on the incredible results being produced by the Texas high school football 7-on-7 tournaments. For example, this past weekend an astonishing 10 NFL starting quarterbacks came from those programs.
While lacking the “spiritual” element, I found the techniques used by Texas coaches to develop quarterbacks extremely applicable to Christian environments hoping to develop young leaders.
The following are 9 Things Pastors Should Know About Developing Young Leaders gleaned from these incredibly productive Texas high school football programs:
Young Leaders Must Be Allowed To Make Mistakes – In addition to allowing quarterbacks time to develop, Texas high school quarterbacks are also given the ability to improvise and make mistakes.
Young Leaders Should Be Given Significant Responsibility – Too often Christian leaders do not recognize the potential of their young people. We give them volunteer responsibilities which do not stretch or challenge them. This approach does not prepare them for the challenges adult Christian leaders face. Detroit Lions qb Matt Stafford said, “We throw (the football) so much (in high school), it’s not a big deal when we get to the next level.”
Young Leaders Will Innovate Out Of Necessity – Baylor head coach Art Briles created his innovative offensive system while coaching football at Stephenville High School. The teams he faced were bigger, stronger, and faster. He says, “I was just trying to figure out something each year. We were having trouble with bigger players, and we started spreading the field to counter that. We kept developing it from there.”
Young Leaders Should Be Exposed To More Experienced Leaders Early And Often – Churches who develop young Christian leaders are focused on discipleship. They prioritize getting younger leaders into the orbits and under the influence of successful, more experienced leaders. Texas high school coaches are constantly bringing in NFL defensive coaches to better prepare their quarterbacks.
Young Leaders Will Thrive In Flexible Environments – Texas high school coaches are flexible and humble. They adjust their offensive game plans around the skills of their quarterbacks rather than making the quarterbacks adjust. Church leaders need to recognize the incredible story God wants to tell through the lives of young people and adjust their ministries, programming and systems accordingly.
Young Leaders Are Resilient – Coach Briles says, “What you’re looking for (in a quarterback) is a mentality. A guy who won’t back down.”
Young Leaders Focus On What They Can Do. Not What They Can’t – Houston Texans qb Case Keenum says, “A lot of people told me what I couldn’t do. I was too short, didn’t have this, didn’t have that. But I always believed in myself. You cannot let other people tell you what you can do.”
Young Leaders Will Respect More Experienced Leaders – It is flawed thinking to assume young people lack respect. Some do. Many do not. Christian leaders should make honoring a church’s past part of the discipleship process. Keenum goes on, “One thing all of us have in common, we realize how important it is to play quarterback in Texas. From a young age, we’re taught to respect the game.”
Young Leaders Need Guidelines Rather Than Rules – Writer Andrew Perloff deducted that a “competitive spirit and lax regulation provide a fertile ground for creativity and excellence.”
What additional practices are you doing as Christian leaders to develop young leaders?