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COACHING QUESTIONS WITH YOUR DISCIPLE

GOSPEL COACHING WITH A DISCIPLE

Gospel Coach

PERSONAL LIFE

(1) What are some evidences of grace in your life recently?

(2) What can you tell me about your spouse and family?

(3) How do you relax or what do you do for fun?

(4) How is your spouse doing?

(5) How are you doing as a couple?

(6) Are there any new strains on your relationship that surprised you?

(7) Has your spouse complained about your time together recently?

SPIRITUAL LIFE

(1) How is the condition of your soul?

(2) How would you describe your call to follow Jesus Christ?

(3) What are some of the Christian communities you participate in and how do they encourage your walk with Jesus?

(4) What is God doing in your heart right now?

(5) How have you seen the Holy Spirit produce new fruit in your life?

MISSIONAL LIFE

(1) What opportunities for ministry do you see before you?

(2) What is God calling you to be or do?

(3) What skills or abilities has God-given you that help clarify your calling?

QUESTIONS FOR FEEDING YOUR DISCIPLE

PERSONAL LIFE

(1) What is God teaching you about your role as a husband and father/wife and mother?

(2) What obstacles are you experiencing in your personal life?

(3) How is your health? Are you taking any medications?

(4) What would enhance your relationship with your spouse?

SPIRITUAL LIFE

(1) What information or resources would be helpful to your spiritual growth?

(2) Where have you experienced the most growth lately?

(3) What is the biggest threat to your oneness with Christ?

(4) Where are you most vulnerable to sin?

(5) What sins are you battling?

(6) What compels you to worship God?

MISSIONAL LIFE

(1) When have you had a significant impact on another person?

(2) In what ways are you making disciples?

(3) What are some challenges you are facing in your primary ministry responsibility?

(4) What resources do you need to accomplish your ministry goals?

QUESTIONS FOR LEADING YOUR DISCIPLE

PERSONAL LIFE

(1) How are you leading your family?

(2) What is the greatest need in your personal life (Look for idols, agendas, identity struggles, and selfishness)?

SPIRITUAL LIFE

(1) How is the Lord leading you to respond to Him?

(2) What is the greatest need in your spiritual life (Look for idols, agendas, identity struggles, and selfishness)?

MISSIONAL LIFE

(1) What is the Lord leading you to {pick one} know (head), feel (heart), or do (hands) with regard to ministry?

(2) What is the mission of your ministry?

(3) What is the greatest need of your ministry life?

QUESTIONS FOR PROTECTING YOUR DISCIPLE

PERSONAL LIFE

(1) What challenges do you face personally?

(2) What temptations occur in your personal life?

(3) How are you prone to wander personally (health, finances, time, marriage, etc.)?

SPIRITUAL LIFE

(1) What challenges do you face spiritually?

(2) What temptations occur in your spiritual life?

(3) What kind of priority do you give to Bible reading and prayer in your life?

(4) Where are you prone to wander spiritually?

MISSIONAL LIFE

(1) What challenges do you face missionally?

(2) What temptations occur in your ministry life?

(3) Where are you prone to wander in ministry?

*SOURCE: Adapted from Appendix 4 in Gospel Coach: Shepherding Leaders to Glorify God by Scott Thomas and Tom Wood. Wheaton: Crossway Books, 2013.

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Establishing a Gospel Coach and Disciple Relationship

INTAKE FORM FOR GOSPEL COACHING WITH A DISCIPLE

Gospel Coach

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.

PERSONAL LIFE

KNOW

(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?

FEED

(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?

LEAD

(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?

PROTECT

(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?

MINISTRY CALL

KNOW

(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?

FEED

(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?

LEAD

(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?

PROTECT

(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?

SPIRITUAL LIFE

KNOW

(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?

FEED

(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?

LEAD

(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?

PROTECT

(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?

MISSIONAL LIFE

KNOW

(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?

FEED

(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?

LEAD

(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?

PROTECT

(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.

 

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40 GREAT LEADERSHIP ACCOUNTABILITY QUESTIONS

*By Scott Thomas and Tom Wood

Gospel Coach

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.

SELF-LEADERSHIP

(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)

INTERPERSONAL LEADERSHIP 

(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?

ORGANIZATIONAL LEADERSHIP

(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?

TEAM LEADERSHIP

(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?

PASTORAL LEADERSHIP

(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.

 

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10 Qualifications of a Church Planter by Scott Thomas


By *Scott Thomas
 Former Acts 29 President and Director

The qualities of a successful basketball player are consistent. He or she can dribble, shoot, pass, play defense, rebound, play as a team, think, move quickly and work hard. They don’t have to do all of these at the same level but all of the qualities characterize a succesful player at the highest level.

Church planters similarily have qualities that determine their God-given capacity to plant a reproducing church.

Chuck Ridley, professor at Texas A&M University compiled the germinal research on church planting assessments with his Church Planter Profile (CPP).  Most assessment instruments start with Ridley’s 13 characteristics in mind as they formulate their own church planter profiles. (Charles R. Ridley and Tweed Moore, ChurchSmart Resources).  This is the most utilized profile in church planter selection. The first six on the list are what he calls “knock-out factors,” meaning these are, according to Ridley, non-negotiable.

(1) Visioning Capacity

(2) Personal Motivation

(3) Creating Ownership of Ministry/Building a Core Team

(4) Reaching the Un-churched

(5) Spousal Cooperation

(6) Relationship Building

(7) Commitment to a Healthy Reproducing Church

(8) Responsiveness to Community

(9) Gift Utilization

(10) Flexibility and Adaptability

(11) Builds Group Cohesiveness

(12) Resilience

(13) Exercising Faith

I told Chuck that my challenge with his outstanding list was that one doesn’t have to be a Christian or be competent theologically or biblically to qualify. His gracious response was that a planter’s sending church or denomination will have already examined that. I would hesitate to assume those two factors today.

My friend, J. Allen Thompson, PhD, is an expert in church planter assessment and regular consultant for Redeemer Presbyterian. He compiled the following list of 18 characteristics of a successful church planter. He also compiled a list for wives that will be covered elsewhere. Allen divides his categories into personal, ministerial and intrapersonal characteristics. (J. Allen Thompson, Church Planter Competencies as Perceived by Church Planters and Assessment Center Leaders: a protestant North American study, Ph.D. dissertation, Trinity International University, Deerfield, Illinois, 1995.  To complete the profile positive and negative indicators are supplied for each characteristic.)

Personal Characteristics

(1) Prayer

(2) Spiritual Vitality

(3) Integrity

(4) God’s Call

(5) Family Life:

(6) Conscientiousness

(7) Humility

 

Ministerial Characteristics

(1) Leadership

(2) Evangelism

(3) Management

(4) Preaching

(5) Philosophy of Ministry

(6) Training leaders

 

Interpersonal Characteristics

(1) Flexibility

(2) Likeability

(3) Emotional stability

(4) Sensitivity

(5) Dynamism

Tim Keller, pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church compiled a list of 20 characteristics for a church planter.  He divided them into eight clusters.

(1) Humility Cluster

(2) Love Cluster

(3) Integrity Cluster

(4) Spirituality Cluster

(5) Nurture Cluster

(6) Communication Cluster

(7) Leadership Cluster

(8) Mission Cluster

Although it seems a little reductionist and arrogant to make a list of what a church looks like, I humbly offer ten qualities based on evidence in the Acts 29 Network, Ridley, Thompson, Keller as well as Dr. Bob Logan and a plethora of books and articles associated with church planting. After reading this list, some men may be more discouraged from church planting than drawn to it. Church planting is difficult for the most qualified men and nearly impossible for those unqualified. If a man does not have the essential tools for the job, he will frustrate himself and everyone around him.

The following ten qualities are in prioritized order as the Acts 29 members rank them. We will look at all ten of these qualities over the course of a year beginning with Spiritual Vitality. It is our goal to produce small e-books covering each of the ten qualities and then produce a book length e-book that will help church planters and those developing them as they explore the mission of making disciples through the planting of reproductive churches.

(1) Spiritual Vitality

(2) Strong Marriage and Family Life

(3) Theological Clarity

(4) Missional Lifestyle

(5) Emotional Health

(6) Entrepreneurial Aptitude

(7) Disciple-Making Skills

(8) Leadership Abilities

(9) Clarity and Strength of Calling

(10) Relationship Building

Church Plant Stoppers

In addition to the ten qualities of a church planter, Thompson’s research adds a section he calls Church Plant Stallers/Stoppers. Acts 29 has adapted this into their assessment as well to address self-centeredness. Church leaders must find their identity in Christ’s forgiveness and acceptance.  When they are overly preoccupied with themselves they show signs of insecurity, pride, love of attention and acclaim and at times irritation and anger.  Being eager for quick success they may cut corners and betray trust. The following characteristics may curb a church plant from maturing and reproducing.

Arrogance:  displays conceited self-sufficiency.

Betraying of trust:  breaks confidence placed in him by others.

Unethical Lifestyle:  lives on the margins of moral standards and values.

 

Conclusion

Mark Dever has said the local church, in all its glory, makes the audible gospel visible [A Display of God’s Glory (9marks: Washington, D.C., 2001)]. The gospel is the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ.  Jesus Christ died and rose again and ascended.  The Church is His Body here on earth.  The place where Jesus Christ is made visible is His Body, not just by one individual.  When one meets a congregation that is “displaying God’s glory” faithfully, one encounters Jesus in one sense.  So planting a church is an exercise in making visible the audible gospel of the Blessed God.

What if I am called to plant a church? What if I am not sure? What do I do?

“Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity. Until I come, devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture, to exhortation, to teaching. Do not neglect the gift you have, which was given you by prophecy when the council of elders laid their hands on you. Practice these things, immerse yourself in them, so that all may see your progress. Keep a close watch on yourself and on the teaching. Persist in this, for by so doing you will save both yourself and your hearers” (1 Tim 4:12-16).

 

*Scott Thomas was the President of Acts 29 Network and now is the Pastor of Global Church at Mars Hill Church. Scott has been a pastor for 30 years—first as a youth pastor and then as a lead pastor and church planter/church replanter for 16 years.

 
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Posted by on March 28, 2012 in Leadership

 

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