The definition of benevolent includes words like kind and well-meaning. They sound like Jesus words to me, but how can "benevolent" be paired with "detachment" and still be kind and well-meaning?
Think of it this way.
Someone calls our church with a need for rent money. We have a certain protocol we walk through before helping out and one of the questions we need answered is whether or not we have helped in the past. Imagine if someone could just call every month and we just paid their rent for them. Would that be good for them?
Instead, we offer financial coaching. We want to help people have gainful employment, manage their finances, and set them up for a more secure future.
We want to help them learn to fish instead of just giving them a fish.
We are playing the long game.
It's easier, and in truth feels more rewarding, to just give the fish, pay the rent, meet the need, make the decision, give the guidance, soothe the pain...
It's better, and in...
As a former Bible college dean, I’ve had many young people ask for mentoring. For clarity’s sake, I learned to ask back what exactly they were looking for in a mentoring relationship.
Here’s some of the answers I received:
While I applauded their initiative for spiritual growth and there was some value in their ideology, in this paradigm the responsibility for their development was all placed on me. I felt I was supposed to design a pathway for their spiritual growth. They wanted me to discern what their next steps would be. And in some cases, there was a hope that I would use my influence to connect them with a ministry position. Their perspective was one where I would be the leader, the teacher, and the guide and they...
I first heard of ASD when I was working at a children's home. I was watching a soccer game and trying to get the attention of one of my own daughters. I kept calling out to her. She was playing too close to the road for my comfort.
"What is wrong with her?", said a young boy placed in our care who had likely heard that phrase too many times.
Without thinking I told him my daughter had Audio Selective Disorder.
"What's that?", said Tommy. I told him, "She can only hear me when she wants to."
He thought for a minute and said, "Oh, I think I have the same thing."
It hit me recently that many believers, myself included, have ASD sometimes. We can only hear when we want to. For me personally, I struggle with hearing God in the small things. I ask for direction on big things but can miss out when He is calling to me in my everyday life.
Maybe He is warning me not to "play too close to the street" when He sees me complaining about my circumstances, or judging...
How should we grow? How will we know?
This is a time of redefining norms for our world and for the church.
As we move through this season - people are coming back to church in person, or not. People are getting back to relationships they once invested in, or not. People are sticking with new habits they formed, or not. People are pursuing plans they once had, or not.
There's a lot to navigate.
For me personally, I would love it if God just gave us a step-by-step plan that we could follow, and then we would KNOW we were doing "it" right!
I would love that full confidence and embrace the challenge to do all the things.
Turns out that is not how He designed our faith walk to be.
Well, not exactly.
The truth is He does have a step-by-step plan for us, but it is an individual path. You probably know the verse as well as I do, but Psalm 119:105 says, "Your word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path."
I wish He would just give us a...
Saboteurs whisper to us all, they sound like friends, they seem wise, but they infiltrate our minds like a poison that tastes sweet.
Discipleship saboteurs say things like,
The best poison is only a small percent deadly, but if you take it in you will eventually die...
Using coaching as the Biblical way of discipleship helps people build their own relationship with God.
Coaching builds disciples not dependents.
Coach training can teach you how!
Saboteurs whisper their hopelessness on the other side of coaching as well. Coaches have helped me discern many of the following as limiting...
Bridges Coaching exists to make disciples, not dependents.
We do this through:
It's easy to go through life unintentionally not engaging in what God has for you personally.
It takes clarity and intentionality to move with purpose engaging in God's unique best next step for you!
Most people don't mean to be dependent but here's how you could tell if you are tending that way. Give yourself 1 point for a positive response to any of these 10 markers.
___ I would prefer if someone would just tell me what to do.
___ If only things would come together for me as they do for everyone else.
___ I can't be expected to adult, I just never got the tools.
___ If the right leader would just mentor me, then I could really become...
We all have them... Conundrums are "a confusing and difficult problem or question."
That's the core of coaching really - helping people through the stuff of life.
Every good movie has a plotline with a believable crisis. Yet, in real life, we don't seem to welcome conundrums.
James 1:2-5 says, "My brothers and sisters, when you have many kinds of troubles, you should be full of joy, because you know that these troubles test your faith, and this will give you patience. Let your patience show itself perfectly in what you do. Then you will be perfect and complete and will have everything you need. But if any of you needs wisdom, you should ask God for it. He is generous to everyone and will give you wisdom without criticizing you."
Just like the enigma had a different code every time - God wants to work with each of us individually. He has a key code He wants to offer for each situation.
When I got my master’s degree I did these coaching “labs” on the side. Turns out they were optional, but I’m so glad I didn’t know that!
Let me explain.
The coaching “labs” were actually coach training and the education I received through them changed my life!
Coaching does not come naturally to most so when I was going through my coach training I really wanted a few things, so I really got seeped in the paradigm.
The training I took left me...
Hangry: adj. (han-gree) a state of emotional angst caused by lack of sufficient nourishment, an increasingly negative outlook as a result of increased hunger.
Have you ever been hangry? I have.
Usually, I don’t realize the cause though the symptoms are pretty obvious (to others):
It’s a family member that usually helps me out. They start out with kind words. “Hey, you okay?” or questions, “Wow, rough day?” and they move toward mirroring, “You don’t seem yourself. What’s up?”
If I get defensive they help me see that my words or actions are not reflecting who they know me to be. If they are really on their game they just offer me something, like my favorite: a well crafted Starbucks Chai Latte (grande, 9 pumps, nonfat, no foam – just in case you were wondering).
What I don’t like is that my hunger has...
You already know what the Instawall is! You’ve likely been on one side or the other multiple times, but now you have a word for it.
It happens when someone says something that builds an instant wall between two people where no matter what was said it cannot be considered a valid choice. A line of respect has been breached and the listener feels small, invalidated or infantized.
Most often the Instawall happens after openers like these:
“You know what I would do if I were you….”
“Okay, so here’s what you need to do…”
“Did you want to (insert what the speakers want them to do) ….?” (this is the soft sell version)
“Listen to me now! …”
Each of these lines assumes the speaker knows best what should happen next for another person.
The kicker is that the speaker may be right! But if the statement is made in a way that makes the other person feel like they are being bossed, or belittled or just flat...
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