by Steve Cordle
I had the privelege of traveling with Joel Comiskey to visit Elim Church in San Salvador, El Salvador. Often regarded as the world’s second largest church, Elim had a weekly cell attendance of 120,000 adults and 30,000 children.
Since cells are the heartbeat of the church, I was surprised to discover that their cell leader training consisted of only 4 simple lessons. Then I learned about their coaching practice. When someone completes the 4 lessons and begins to lead a group, a coach attends every meeting with the leader. The coach is present every step to give the leader confidence, feedback, and to avoid pitfalls. The coach may not always be present for the entire meeting, but for the indefinite future, the coach is present at every meeting.
The principle? Coaching is more important than training. This is not to minimize an equipping track (our church has more than 4 sessions of leader training!) But it is to say that strong leaders are formed more by guided experience and personal tranference than by instruction and theory. How personal is your coaching?