I have got to say first of all that I am a very sensitive man. Yes, I played football (linebacker = mean) and I was a cop, etc. But I am a very emotional person and I love people and I love to watch God change their lives before my very eyes. And when I watch this happen, especially when it’s someone I have been praying for, it brings tears to my eyes. So, as in past blogs, I am once again in tears at the coffee shop (Cafe’ Delirium). There’s a guy I’ve been praying for spuratically, hoping God would open his eyes and begin to rely on him in every aspect of his life. I didn’t know where he stood exactly with the Lord, but simply knew he need Jesus Christ to reign and rule in his life.
Today, as I was preparing to write a “Church History” paper, he sat at my table and just began to open up a little. After a little small talk, he told me that he had gotten back in church. Just to hear one word after another about how God has been holding him up throughout the years and is shaping his heart today, brought tears to my eyes. On the inside I was screaming, “YES! YES! YES! Praise YOU Jesus!!! YES!” My hands are literally shaking now as I type this blog. Have you ever seen this? Have you ever experienced this?
It’s times like these…these little moments of seeing another’s faith that sparks the growth of my own faith. It’s really hard to see your own faith grow. It’s almost like noticing yourself getting taller on a daily basis. It’s hard to notice how much we physically grow because it happens to slowly and we simply don’t pay that much attention and then one day we notice…”Hey, I’ve gotten taller!” or “Hey, I’m getting more gray hair!!!” We have a much better view of others’ growth than our own. And I believe God designed it that way. God wants us to be encouraged by others’ spiritual growth because we need encouragement that God is still interested in our pathetic lives and interested in every detail and is backing us and encouraging us to grow in our trust in Him. And when we see that He is indeed working in others, we marvel at His affections and effort in us and for us. To know God is on our side; that He is rooting for us and providing everything in our lives for us to succeed and grow is mind-blowing.
Since we know that others’ spiritual growth is an enormous source of encouragement, we need to be a coach to someone. We need to disciple someone. Who are you coaching? Are you coaching anyone? If you aren’t coaching (mentoring or discipling) someone, you are missing out on an incredible blessing. Currently, I’m coaching someone and I’m also being coached. I’m about to take on another “player” in the spiritual journey and I am so excited. I can’t wait to watch God work in this person’s life. So the two big questions for you are 1) “are you coaching anyone?” and 2) “who’s coaching you?”
Are You Coaching Anyone?
You are a coach. No, I didn’t ask if you were a coach or not because that’s not a good question, plus it has already been answered. If you are a follower of Jesus Christ you are a coach. Maybe you don’t feel qualified to coach anyone. Maybe you’re thinking, “You don’t know what I’ve done. I have no business coaching anyone. You don’t know my life now. If you knew how spiritually flat I was you wouldn’t ask me to coach.” Your thinking is off and is unscriptural. Now, we wouldn’t want to be unscriptural would we? Of course not. God will use your willingness to coach others to develop yourself. Are you qualified to coach anyone? No. That’s right. You don’t have what it takes. But Jesus does. You can lead a personto learn about Jesus Christ. You can learn together. You don’t have to know all the answers. You can pray with the person. You only need to be available to the person. Don’t try to be righteous, just be yourself. Just be available to coach.
Are You Being Coached?
If you are not being coached by someone, you are not providing encouragement to someone who needs it. Who coaches you spiritually on a weekly basis? Who can you call to ask questions and get Christ-answers? Who? If you don’t have anyone, you’d better find one. God never calls us to walk alone and every Believer needs at least one strong and stable mentor/coach in their lives. They provide direction, understanding, wisdom, accountability, and love in good times and bad. A coach will be honest with you when no one else will. You need that kind of coach. A once/week sermon will not do it for you and the televangelist will not do it for you. A small group will not do it for you. But a coach will. Are you being coached? Find a coach and simply be available to share honestly, openly, and you will grow.
Bring spiritual encouragement to yourself and others by becoming available to coaching others and to be coached yourself. No player gets better at anything he does all by his self; every player needs a coach. That’s why, in athletics, the player on the field or the floor isn’t the coach. The athlete isn’t capable to see the “big picture.” Only the coach can evaluate the “game” and the player can only evaluate “the play” because the player is in the midst of the game. A player without a coach is confused, easily misled, and makes many more mistakes that he/she would if they had a coach. Get a coach, then be a coach. Pass on the Biblical wisdom you’ve lived out…that is timeless and priceless and the recipient and yourself will reap the benefits for the rest of your lives.