(This is the final post in our 3-part Spiritual Coaching series. Here are the first and second.)
How do you know when you’re storing up treasure in heaven? Can you measure how quickly your investment is increasing?
Heaven’s currency consists of God’s thoughts, feelings and decisions. Put simply, his desires for your life are your most valuable possessions. God’s desires transform your desires and cause your good deeds, which create rewards.
So, how do you coach someone- let’s say your son or daughter- to purchase and store up heaven’s treasure? Well, you have to show them how to recognize the lies that they believe about God’s perspective. When they bring these lies to God, he gives them the treasure that they long for: his viewpoint.
That’s how they become “invested” in the most valuable commodity that they could possibly own: their relationship with Jesus Christ. Knowing God’s desires for them is what transforms them into his image, which is how they will be for eternity.
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Their eternal reward will be intimacy with God, through sharing his thoughts and desires. (I admit that I have no idea what this intimacy will look like, but that’s what I’m most looking forward to in heaven. Being part of the bride and all, it would be a pity if I treasured anything else more than that!)
In the last two posts (one and two), I gave you ten steps for coaching someone to break through their lies and walk in intimacy with God. (To go straight to our list of 5 tools for that, see the red box near the bottom of this post.)
Now, let’s look at the practical side of building this treasure with a team. Are you a parent? Business owner? Ministry leader? Maybe you’re not just coaching one person. Maybe you’ve got a team.
You can convert those tense moments on your team into golden nuggets of encounter with God.
If you’re all about spiritual investment, teams can be tricky. But then, they can also have a huge spiritual impact.
Effective leadership is never easy, but it’s worth the struggle. If spiritual impact is what you’re aiming for, here are ten steps you can take to move your team into revival mode.
Provide Spirit-Led Direction:
- Create ground rules that prep the group for resolving tension.
- Review the ground rules before communication gets difficult.
- Handle roadblocks in partnership with Jesus: mention mistakes, isolate ignorance, remove rebellion.
- When symptoms surface, use The Worship Strategy Book.
- Stay consistent across the board with active accountability.
Come Alongside of Each One:
- Find out whether each one is a Christian.
- Learn what God is doing in the life of each team member.
- Take responsibility to coach each team member who needs it.
- Get together regularly to talk about their progress.
- Pray for each one’s next breakthrough.
Let’s go through these one by one. Then, I’ll give you the toolbelt with the 5 items that you need to have on hand. Ready?
Step 1: Create ground rules that prep the group for resolving tension. Any team environment (family, business or ministry) needs a one-page list of ground rules that everyone can remember. It’s a good idea to set this up as an agreement that members can choose to make.
Phrase your rules to help the group members build the group culture. For example, rephrase a “No interrupting” rule to say, “When I’m interrupted, I will say, ‘Please don’t interrupt me right now,’ and then finish speaking my train of thought.” See how the new phrasing teaches people to take responsibility for resolving tension themselves?
Step 2: Review the ground rules before communication gets difficult. Even if it seems like overkill, read the agreement out loud to the whole team regularly. Tweak it as needed so that it addresses the specific types of tension that keep coming up. You want the rules to be so simple and repetitive that everyone can remember them.
Step 3: Handle roadblocks in partnership with Jesus: mention mistakes, isolate ignorance, remove rebellion. Everyone feels better when roadblocks are addressed. Kindly mention mistakes in private (if possible). If this person continues making the same mistake, they are ignoring your correction. They need to work alone or with you so that you can see and pray through the problem.
Once you’ve found the problem, correct it. If this person doesn’t want to cooperate with clear correction (like if your child won’t stay in time out), take them off of the team for a little while. When they rebel, they’re inappropriately challenging your leadership. Keep that person off the team until they agree to work with you. There is no team unless everyone’s on board with healthy leadership.
Step 4: When symptoms surface, use The Worship Strategy Book. Get The Worship Strategy Book printable packet from our freebie library (see the blue box toward the bottom of this post). Install one giant tab on each of the five diagram pages so that the strategies are easy to flip to.
Here are the five tab titles: Tempted Spiritually (page 4), Overwhelmed Emotionally (page 13), Confused Mentally (page 19), Exhausted Behaviorally (page 24), Weak Physically (page 29). Any time someone is struggling, ask them to take some time alone and pick a strategy.
Step 5: Stay consistent across the board with active accountability. The worship strategies will expose issues in the lives of your team members. This is where active leadership really makes a difference. Coming alongside of each member when they’re vulnerable is the key to personal and team growth.
Be vulnerable about your own journey when your team member is vulnerable. Help them to use the strategies in the packet by sharing how they work in your life. Accountability means that you care enough to look under the surface and challenge someone to take the next step in their growth and maturity.
Step 6: Find out whether each one is a Christian. God has put you in their life to help them discover His heartview, and vice versa. Do they seem interested when you talk about God’s thoughts, or does their heart seem cold? Don’t try to judge a person’s relationship with God “by their fruit.” (That’s for judging leadership.) Here’s how to help someone be born again.
If a person says that they’ve been born again, but they don’t seem interested in God’s treasure (his heartview), still treat them like a Christian. They will eventually notice that they’re missing the Holy Spirit because other Christians, like you, operate differently. Then, they will want the treasure.
Step 7: Learn what God is doing in the life of each team member. Your team exists, like you exist, for worship. Glory. Intimate relationships with the Trinity. The strength of your family, business or ministry depends on the Holy Spirit’s voice flowing through each member to the whole.
It is in your best interest to help each member unlock their personal communion with the Father, Son and Holy Spirit (including yourself). Once you’re aware of your own gifts and battles, take the time to find out what each of the others is struggling with and succeeding at. Write this down and pray over it.
Step 8: Take responsibility for coaching each team member who needs it. Are your team members open to getting trained in dialoguing with God? This is where it gets exciting. Picture God unlocking his purposes to each one on your team. Imagine them using scripture to motivate and encourage one another daily with their battle plans.
Use our last post, How to Coach a Spiritual Breakthrough, to learn the steps of spiritual fitness coaching. Pray that each one would be actively building their treasure in heaven with their own battle plan. Offer each team member a binder with their own copy of The Worship Notebook.
Step 9: Get together regularly to talk about their battle plan. Evil forces are trying to block their communion with God through distraction, discouragement and distress. You will have to fight for each team member in your prayer closet and then entice them into theirs.
Have coffee or tea with this person every so often to give them a fresh dose of encouragement. Tell them stories of what God is doing in your life through The Worship Notebook. Pique their curiosity by dropping nuggets of God’s thoughts and desires about them. (Get these from your prayer closet.) God will show them their need for battle planning in his time.
Step 10: Pray for each one’s breakthrough. As team leader, you’re just as vulnerable as your team members are. If anything, you are more aware of your vulnerability than they are. Have a friend call you first thing every weekday morning, or meet with you once a week, to pray with you over your team.
Here’s the thing: our moments on earth are limited. Each missed opportunity should be a wake-up call to tweak for success. If you’re not getting scriptures from God to pray over your family members, employees or ministry partners, maybe you’re not listening. Use our guide to get on the phone with someone daily for the purpose of listening for your treasure. (See the second paragraph here.)
As a side note: male team leaders should get females to coach female team members, and vice versa. It doesn’t matter how badly a team member needs personal coaching, crossing the gender line is totally not worth it. Find someone of their own gender to coach them or just let it go. (But coach your own kid, of course.)
To shepherd in partnership with the greatest coach who ever lived, you’ll need a 5-piece toolbelt for each person. Start by using it yourself. Once it starts working for you, go out and get a toolbelt for everyone on your team. (Unless you’re in a crisis and you need something for everyone now!)
The 5-Piece Toolbelt:
- Your team’s ground rules agreement
- A stapled, tabbed strategy book (or, for children ages 5-13, use The COLOR Strategy instead of The Worship Strategy Book)
- A Bible (or use a Bible app, like Logos)
- Colored pencils to highlight verses
- The Worship Notebook printed out in a binder, with additional notebook paper for journaling, plus an index card
If you’re not sure how to use The Worship Strategy Book, go back and read “The 5 Strategic Steps of Spiritual Coaching.”
If you’re not sure how to use The Worship Notebook, go back and read “How to Coach a Spiritual Breakthrough.”
Here’s how you can get The Worship Strategy Book and The Worship Notebook now:
How to Get the Freebies:
To get The Worship Strategy Book, click this link for Page 5. Open the first item on the page, “The Worship Strategy Book (entire packet).” There are 44 pages. If cost is a factor, print in black and white, then replace just the diagram pages with color copies (pages 5, 12, 15, 22, 28, 34, and the cover). See Step 4 above for the the tabs.
To get our step-by-step guide to finding a prayer partner, sign up for The Worship Course here (it’s free). Then, scroll down to the Bonus section at the bottom and click “Prayer & Accountability Partnerships.” Click the link “Prayer Partnerships.PDF” under the preview box.
(If you’ve never printed out these binders before, get all the details on our Put Together Your Worship Binders page.)
How to introduce these tools to your team:
First, start using them yourself. When you’re in the team environment and you feel yourself getting more and more tense (angry or anxious), take a break. Go by yourself and use the tabs to select the right strategy from The Worship Strategy Book.
Pray about using The Worship Notebook to transform your personal prayer time each morning. Whether you have 10 minutes or an hour, this reusable workbook will show you how to invest it in God’s thoughts and desires. (Make sure to follow directions for the best use of your time.)
When the Holy Spirit shows you that it’s time, you can put together a strategy book for each team member and have a meeting. Go over your ground rules agreement and explain how you’ve been using your strategy book.
The next time someone is feeling tension, ask them to take some time alone and choose a strategy (step 4 above). If a team member is not cooperating with your team agreement (step 3 above), you can use the strategy book to help them to identify their struggle.
Take each team member out for tea or coffee every so often and get to know them better. Share with them what God’s doing with your Worship Notebook, and offer them a copy if they would like one (steps 7-9 above).
Make yourself available for spiritual coaching as the Holy Spirit leads. You can show them how to highlight verses with colored pencils and pray God’s desires from these words. (See page 10 of The Worship Strategy Book for that.)
Lord, remind me continually to exchange all worthless thoughts and desires for yours. Show me your strategies for living a purpose-centered, spiritually wealthy life.-Sophiculture
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