This blog will focus on my journey as I go through Christian coach training under the lifeforming leadership program.
We had our first workshop last night. It was 5 hours of listening, writing, role-playing and asking questions. The 5 hours went by quickly with the help of a few small breaks in between lessons. While everything we talked about was beneficial in some way, there are some specific things that stood out.
After the initial introduction and technical talk, we dived into what a coach is and what a coach does. We also talked about the culture of a lifeforming coach and our responsibilities to our self, our clients and God. One message I wrote was we need to invite the Holy Spirit to transform us so we can transform other through Faith and believing that people are capable of stewardship. I believe some of that transformation in me occurred last night.
I don’t even remember the question that was asked, but I remember my classmate’s answer that spoke to me. In order to understand the gravity of the situation I need to provide a little background.
In a nutshell, due to a dysfunctional family upbringing and my husband becoming a passerby due to his schedule, I’ve been feeling lonely and abandoned. I’ve felt that something is missing in my life and I have never been able to fill that hole. I’ve turned to destructive behaviors to push down the emotions in the form of compulsive overeating as well as positive coping strategies through various types of exercise. I have been seeing a counselor for these issues and have really been trying to get at the root of why I feel so lonely. Through a intense session I admitted out loud to myself that I feel unworthy and not good enough, like I am undeserving. It felt good to verbalize but hard to hear. I know that I am highly critical of myself and I know that I am my own worst enemy. I think that is what attracted me to coaching, specifically Christian coaching, I really have felt that if I could help others realize their potential through God then I would finally be living up to my own.
Fast forward to one of the workshop activities where we had to answer a question. I cannot remember the specific question though I think it had something to do with what coaching could do to change people. One of my peers shared her answer that shed some light into my struggles and gave me hope as I face my situation.
She said that coaching will help people who feel unworthy or not good enough or undeserving to reach their potential be able to understand that through God they will be able to reach their full potential. Her answer caused an immediate emotional reaction, I felt the tears coming as I was trying to hide my face (since we all have webcams for class) Luckily for me there was a break shortly after her response.
God knows my heart, he knows my hopes and fears, struggles and victories. Hearing her answer, I felt that she was speaking directly to me, and she was in a way. It was God speaking through her, he was getting at the core of my desire and the crux of my fear. He was assuring me that this journey, this transformation is one that will not leave me as the same person I am now. All of that insecurity, worry and doubt will be gone when I reach my maximum potential. I feel that those words she said that so perfectly aligned with my description of my own feelings are evidence that this is my destiny to be coached and to coach others through God’s word.
The gut -level response I experienced was overwhelming. I felt the immediate urge to get on my knees and praise God for that revelation and for lifting the burden and relieving the pain. I did just that and wept uncontrollably, not out of sadness or helplessness, but out of praise and admiration. He heard my heart and he spoke to me letting me know that my footsteps are following his path. I cannot even begin to explain the peace I felt afterwards.
As the workshop continued there was a time to volunteer for demonstration. The question was the think of something you would like to resolve immediately. The purpose of the demonstration was for her to show the wrong way and the right way to ask questions.
She probed a little, and I provided much background. I was honest in my answers and since my peers were told to note nonverbals, many of them picked up on my pain and trouble. I suppose I really am that transparent, but I also know that they are practicing be sensitive to these types of cues because as coaches we need to be able to read between the lines and connect the dots of our client’s stories. As we focused on one a specific goal of me not baking anymore sweets, she help me come up with a solution to just avoid looking at recipes on Pinterest. The questions she asked were able to lead me to new insight and look at my situation in a way I hadn’t before. If I am not tempted to “try new recipes” by looking them up on Pinterest where it is mostly sweets that show up, then I won’t have the urge to bake. After coming up with this solution (in front of everyone) I’ve decided that I am going to try it. I want to report to my peers tomorrow for our second workshop that I have been successful and I am maintaining my end of the bargain.
Another activity we did was a listening activity. I learned that I am often focused on what my next question is or the next point I am going to make, and that I am not fully engaged or present in the moment. I have decided to be more present and aware and slow down and not try to anticipate the next thing. I know that while I can listen well, I need to not be so worried of other’s approval (another thing my intuitive peers pointed out) I have all the approval I need as a child of God.
The final part of the workshop we went over two worksheets that helped us to identify that until God has his hand in that particular area of our life, we will forever just go around and around in a circle and never make the progress needed to advance to the next step. I have always said that I have faith and I do trust, but until you surrender your control and your will, you will not gain the insight you need.
It was a challenging, difficult, enlightening and amazing experience in this first workshop. God is at work changing my heart and as long as I have faith in him and I trust in him I will feel no more pain and he will move in those areas of my life that have long since seen the light.
After class was over I was exhausted physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually, however I was am still at peace and steadfast in my decision to embark on this journey. The next workshop is tomorrow and I can not wait to see what is in store for me!
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of the Lord our God rest on us;