Category Archives: Equipping

Critical Ministry Shift – From Information & Teaching to Skills & Coaching

There is a shift in my ministry philosophy I wish I had figured out years ago. It is a shift from disseminating information through teaching/lecture and the teaching of skills through coaching.

This is so obvious it would seem it doesn’t even need to be said and yet it took me to 40 to come to grips with this.

We tell people in sermons what they ought to do but don’t train them. We don’t coach them to skills. Then everyone ends up disappointed. We tell people what they are supposed to be doing in the sermon but what if they don’t know how? How can a sermon equip anyone? How can a Bible class equip them? How can, even, a small group do the job?

We have to shift form information through teaching to skill formation through coaching. This will require a shift in how we use our time. We need to take people along with us, instruct, give them the experience and debrief so that others know how to do what we do and do it regularly.

No one taught me how to coach. I have been taught congregational ministry and that entails how different size churches operate, leadership, communication, etc but not coaching.

Being an effective coach is essential to effective ministry. It requires taking on fewer people and moving much more slowly than mass communication to everyone at once.

I will be talking about this more in the near future. Until then here is more info to give you an idea of where this shift came from and what I am doing about it.

Can We Start A Discipling Movement In Churches of Christ?

[As soon as I posted this I realized I was off on the wrong foot. If it is a movement, we won’t start it but we would have to embrace it. And I believe God is moving us in the direction of discipleship and discipling in line with the Great Commission (which Barna tells usContinue Reading

What it Takes to get on the path toward meaningful outreach

I just posted this over at Wineskins and invite you to give it a read. I think we have some real issues to overcome here and am confident we will get over this, Resurrecting Evangelism…Calling a Kingdom of Priests. Let me know what you think and pass it along if you think it is helpful!

Red Letters Over Black Letters…But They are all Inspired

Our movement loves information…we teach until we are blue in the face. Information is king…if you know the right things and believe all the right things then all is well. What you do with that information is inconsequential…just make sure you have the right belief system and we’ll leave you alone. We love the redContinue Reading

Spiritual Growth Workshop 2014

Every other year there is an outstanding workshop held in Orlando called the Spiritual Growth Workshop. The leadership of this event made a fantastic decision this year that I hope sets the tone for many years to come…first is the theme…”Equip”. In order to really emphasize the theme and execute on it well they haveContinue Reading

SWOT Analysis: A Helpful Tool for Understanding Organizations

In preparation for teaching at the Pepperdine Lectures in May Charles Kiser introduced Eric Brown and I to SWOT Analysis. I have been a fan ever since. Here is a diagram that will help you wrap your mind around it. This framework helps you identify what internal and external resources and liabilities and organization. ThisContinue Reading

Q & A on “Church Steps” Outreach

I asked my friend Philip Cunningham for some feedback and what questions he had so far about our “Church Steps” Outreach we have started at Northwest. Here are Philip’s questions and my answers: Philip: What is the age range of your outreach group?  Also- the median age? Our ministry is representative of the congregation. TheContinue Reading

Church Steps Outreach Material Updated

I just updated the “Church Steps” outreach material page on the blog Church Steps Outreach One of the biggest questions people have when faced with blazing a trail into a new (or old but forgotten) arena is what can this look like? If you can help people see what something can look like you removeContinue Reading

Two Free Resources From Mike Breen & 3DM

Free additional chapters to Building a Discipling Culture Fivefold Gifts Survey

Spiritual Transformation: More Information is Not the Answer

The Jews had the Law for 1300 years before Christ came. There were all kinds of details in the Law about how to live, what to do in various situations, and how to maintain holiness and deal with sin. As we know today, the Law was not sufficient. What did God do in its place?Continue Reading


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