As important as all of the couples in your group are, your Coaches in Training couple’s development into quality Coaches should be one of your major concerns. Developing your Coaches in Training should comprise at least 50% of your effort as a Coach with each group. With each Coaches in Training couple that you develop, you help establish the pattern for future leadership in your community. Each couple you train in turn trains another and so on as the groups multiply. Not only do you invest in their marriage but also in their future 2=1 Australia ministry. It is critical that you impart to them all you can in the few short weeks that you work together.
God has placed you in a position of authority and there are responsibilities that go with it. When the Lord shows you an area that your Coaches in Training need to work on, you MUST share that with them and help them work it through. Of course, you must pray for them. That should go without saying. It is from that time in prayer that the Lord will give you direction concerning their needs. It may be an area in their marriage that the Lord wants to heal or improve. It may be a hindrance to Coaching that He wants dealt with. Be obedient to His prompting, continuing to press in and help them get the victory that Jesus has for them.
1. MAKE SURE THEY ARE PRAYING TOGETHER.
Praying together is one of the most powerful things that a couple can do. You, as Coaches, are to help develop this trait within the marriage of your Coaches in Training. You need to meet with them at least once a week apart from the weekly group meeting. This is the time to do spiritual warfare for your group and share insight with them that will help them develop in their coaching role. As both couples pray together in the spirit, unity in the Spirit will develop, you will receive a greater understanding of the heart of God for each couple in your group, and it will put you in an atmosphere of faith for the Married for Life meeting that is to follow.
This is also an excellent time to assess the freedom with which your Coaches in Training are able to pray in the spirit together. If you develop nothing else in them—and please don’t let that be the case—do not neglect to develop their praying in the spirit TOGETHER. It is the key to walking as one-flesh directed by the Holy Spirit. If they do not grasp the importance of that and do not develop an ease in praying together, their ministry, as well as their relationship, will be severely hindered. ASK them if they are praying together. How often? How long? It is important that you know.
2. HELP THEM TO SEE THE POTENTIAL IN OTHERS.
Anytime you meet with your Coaches in Training and discuss other couples in your group it should be in an attitude of faith, that is, looking to what the faith vision for each couple is. It is not to be a time of criticism or hopeless talk concerning shortcomings. You are to help your Coaches in Training see what couples can become under the direction of the Holy Spirit.
Sometimes when people are new to ministry it is harder for them to see beyond where people are to where they can be. Your own attitude in dealing with the couples in your group will have a great deal to do with how your Coaches in Training see them. Teach them that prayer changes even the darkest of circumstances.
3. ENCOURAGE THEM AS THEY DEVELOP IN LEADERSHIP.
Each couple needs to know that, as they develop, God will be able to use them in a mighty way in 2=1 Australia ministry. They need to be reassured that the anointing and authority are from God and that as they learn to listen and follow Him more closely, both will increase. Point out to them areas in which they have been led of the Spirit and have followed Him well. Give them opportunity to grow in the Spirit.
Your Coaches in Training should teach at least 2 lessons during the course. Prayerfully select those lessons and then give your Coaches in Training honest critiques mixed with love and encouragement. It is better to share an area with them that needs some work and allow them to grow in that area than to tell them that all is well when it isn’t. Speak the truth in love and help them to become all that God is challenging them to be.
4. HELP THEM TO BECOME TRANSPARENT.
To be effective in 2=1 Australia coaching, couples must be willing to share their failures as well as their successes. When people can be shown how Jesus helped someone else to overcome a failure, they can believe Him to help them do the same. Help your Coaches in Training to become transparent in this way so that they are not threatened to share the areas where they needed the most help. Very often couples feel that if they share weakness the couples in their group will not respect them as Coaches. Encourage them that the very things they are overcoming with the help of the Lord are the things that speak to couples struggling for victory. It is not a sign of weakness but of strength in Jesus that they are free to admit their insufficiency. It is through the sharing of how the Word changed their relationship that others receive hope and direction for the same life changes to occur in their relationship. Help your Coaches in Training become comfortable with being transparent before the group.
5. HELP DETERMINE IF YOUR CITs ARE READY TO LEAD A GROUP OF THEIR OWN.
As Coaches, you must give input to your city leadership regarding your Coaches in Training ability to Lead a group of their own. The standard expectation is that they will be ready to lead at the end of the course but if you assess that they are not yet ready it is up to you to share that with your leadership. If your city does not yet have leadership appointed, contact your State or Regional Leaders. A couple does not automatically begin leading a group after they have been Coaches in Training one time. Each couple is given the amount of time that they need to adequately prepare to coach. There is nothing wrong with taking longer to prepare and to then begin coaching their own group with strength and confidence. You are the ones who are closest to them and know their strengths and weaknesses best. You are the ones who must provide the input.
Please understand this is not referring to being uncertain about coaching. All Group Coaches begin their role a bit shaky and unsure of themselves. Major problems that would postpone their leadership would be an inability or unwillingness to pray together, a man not taking the headship of his household or a wife refusing to defer to her husband as head, disagreement with the 2=1 course content, or refusal to submit to authority. If you have any questions regarding your Coaches in Training, please contact the Coaching couple overseeing you. The promotion of Coaches in Training to Coaches is NOT automatic. You must help determine if they are ready. If they do need to repeat as CITs, they should complete their second group with a different Coaching couple.
6. RELEASE THEM AS COACHES IN TRAINING/RECEIVE THEM AS PEERS.
Once your Coaches in Training have assumed responsibility of their own group you are no longer their Coaches but are now their peers. Over the weeks you have spent together you will no doubt have developed a special relationship with them. This is similar to Parents raising their children. Like a Father and Mother, release them as they grow into adults but nurture that relationship you have with them like parents would with their own adult children. Be there to encourage them but also receive their love and friendship. We are not a corporate body but a family and as such we are to lay down our lives for one another and build each other up in love.
FRIENDS AND PEERS
It is important for Coaches to maintain friendships and peer relationships. Coaches should never isolate themselves or fear getting close to people. Each of us in the Body of Christ needs someone who loves us and cares enough about us to challenge us to grow in Christ. This need is especially true when we are in leadership.
Because you are in a marriage ministry, you will find that relationships with other couples often consist of counselling or teaching. It may not be long before you seem to be constantly giving out and receiving very little in return. As you grow you may even find that you lose some of your old friends. Social events very often turn into ministry as others seek help wherever they can get it. If you do not make the effort to maintain friendships and peer relationships, you will soon find yourselves very isolated and lonely.
1. WHAT IS A FRIEND?
The world’s concept of a friend is one that accepts us for who and what we are and lets us remain that way. In a worldly friendship, we have no right to request change. We must take each other as we are and leave it at that.
Friendships in the Body of Christ, however, should not follow this worldly pattern. It is true that as members of the Body we are to accept and love each other just as we are. Because of our potential in Christ, though, we need to challenge each other to grow from that point in Jesus. A true Christian friend is one who will expect God’s very best in us and for us and support us as we grow into it. We need to be that kind of friend to each other. In other words, in Christ our concept of a friend is one that accepts us for who and what we are but will not let us remain that way in areas where we do not conform to Christ’s image.
2. WHAT IS A PEER?
All of us need peer relationships. The world’s idea of a peer relationship is that we associate with others on our same level in a line of hierarchy. That is not what we mean by peer.
A peer relationship is one in which you receive as much as you give and you are free to give as much as you receive. In most relationships of ministry, you are giving more than you receive. The people to whom you are ministering came to receive from you and do not, for the most part, give back any ministry to you. In relationships with pastors, teachers, bosses, etc., you usually are receiving more than you are giving. In some cases you may not even be free to attempt to give input or ministry to them by their own design. Neither of these are peer relationships.
Seek out one or two other couples with which to establish peer relationships. When you meet with these couples, let it be a time of loving, encouraging, and challenging each other to God’s best.
An ideal couple with which to do this is your pastor. If they are open to it, they will be a tremendous help to you in your growth in Christ. You in turn can minister into their marriage and encourage them in their walk with the Lord. Most pastors do not have peer relationships. Most leaders in the Body of Christ do not have peer relationships. This is unfortunate. Even Jesus had men with whom He established peer relationships. Out of all of His disciples, He had twelve Apostles with whom He shared a closer relationship. Out of those twelve, He had three (Peter, James, and John) who were very close to Him. He took them with Him when He healed Jairus’s daughter [Mark 5:37, Luke 8:51]. In the Garden of Gethsemane He took them with Him as He went apart to pray [Matthew 26:37-46].
If your pastor is not open to establishing a peer relationship, seek out another couple or two that you know is going to challenge you to grow. Make sure they are not couples that are in “awe” of you as Coaches and would hesitate to minister into your life. Make sure you are comfortable both giving to and receiving from them.
An important part of developing Coaches is following the examples and directions given in the Word of God. The Gospels provide an excellent training manual as Jesus selects and trains His leaders, eventually releasing them to “do greater works” than He has done.
There are many other fine examples of coaching principles in other scriptures as well. We are going to explore the relationship of Joshua and Moses as Joshua is first trained for leadership and then becomes the leader of his people. We have separated this study into two phases, the first one for Coaches in Training and the second one for Coaches. We hope this study provides not only guidelines for development but also an in-depth understanding of the heart and challenges of a Coach.
Phase 1 should be completed by all Coaches in Training before their first group is finished. The best scenario would be to have completed it before the group begins. Phase 2 should be completed before a couple becomes Coach. If you trained for 2=1 Australia leadership on a Training Weekend or in some other form of training, you should have completed the entire Bible study (both phases 1 and 2) before you begin your first group as Coaches.
Although the Bible Study is designed for couples to complete on their own, it also provides excellent material for discussions at leadership meetings and is part of 2=1 leadership development. Many churches and other ministries around the world have asked permission to use this study as part of their leadership preparation. Please take full advantage of this valuable tool.