Dave Wasemann, of www.visionteam.info has been walking mainline pastors through my latest book, The Missional Journey. He has developed a protocol of involving people in a study of the book for a few months, then meeting with them once a month for eight months to coach them through the implementation.
Now that he’s into the latter part of that process, I followed up with him to see what results he’s been seeing. The rest of this entry is comprised of some of his thoughts:
After processing The Missional Journey with people, I’m now into the deepening part. Once a month we spend time preparing, praying, discerning, clarifying, and developing. We focus on processing obstacles and deepening implementation in their individual contexts.
One significant result I’m seeing is a deep appreciation of the company of God and of a coach. These leaders are feeling like they’re not in it alone.
I’ve also seen a formula at work that has been introduced in NCD training:
D + V + CA = C
That’s dissatisfaction + vision + change agent = change
Many leaders are experiencing a sense of unease or dissatisfaction. They know their church or ministry isn’t reaching the full potential God has for it. When that dissatisfaction continues long enough, the best that can happen is that the person realizes they need help. Sometimes they seek out a therapist or a spiritual director, but many don’t have experience with coaches.
I introduce them to the concept of coaching. The coach is the change agent. If you leave out the change agent, you end up in a stall after envisioning or even frustration: D + V – CA = frustration.
Coaches can help with the vision, which has four components: prayer, leadership, discipleship, and mission/ministry. The vision is the definite picture of mission/ministry you put into the fourfold framework that is local and contextualized. As a change agent, I develop key questions to help them articulate their vision and come up with a protocol for change. From the beginning I prepare them to use questions as a means of producing prayers and continuing to discover important insights about local ministry. For example, what are the obstacles? Pray about the obstacles. What resources will you need? Pray about the resources.
When all of those components come together (D + V + CA), you have outcomes of calm, clarity, fulfillment, and — yes– change. Coaches can contribute a great deal of value to that process; their contributions in terms of prayer, discernment, design help, and forward motion are essential. Coaching brings positive, effective change.