March 02, 2022

The Spirit-Led Leader
I realized early on in ministry that I was not smart enough to be the Holy Spirit. The best I can do is to help people listen to what God is doing in their life and then to cooperate with the Holy Spirit to see God’s agenda become a reality.

Written By Robert E Logan

Christian Coaching Pioneer, Strategic Ministry Catalyst, Resource Developer, Empowering Consultant : Logan Leadership

The Coach’s Role

When we are discipling people, I’ve found that almost everybody knows at least one area where they need to grow. We all recognize the need—we just need the support and encouragement to get there. So why should I tell people where God wants them to grow? They can listen to the Holy Spirit for themselves. My role is to help them listen to the Spirit, to ask them good questions that point them toward God and what he may have for them. Even if people don’t know fully where they need to grow, they usually know something and can start there.

A coach’s role is to discover what God is already doing in your client as nurture it.

Listening to the Spirit

It was a life-changing, paradigm-shifting moment for me when I truly recognized the role of the Spirit in our lives. It has profound implications for how we listen to God and others, how we trust God and others, and how we see our own role. The best leaders in ministry today don’t lead from a place of self, but by listening to the voice and direction of God.

Consider: Do you really believe that the Holy Spirit can speak to people? To you? To others? Regardless of our different theologies, we can all agree that the Spirit communicates with everyone, although we may differ on how exactly he does that. All believers have the capacity to hear from God. If that’s true, it changes everything.

Spirit-led leader listening to the Holy Spirit

Following Jesus’ Example

The world sees as leaders those who are full of confidence in themselves, who know the right answers, who always know what to do in every situation. Jesus’ view—and the example he sets—of leadership is much different. He models a leadership that relies heavily on God the Father and the Holy Spirit. We see him praying for his disciples, discerning who to invest in, and figuring out where to go next. “Very truly I tell you, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does” (John 5:19). It’s a posture of humility.

Powerful Leadership

Our being in cooperation with what God is doing in the lives of other people is what can truly make our leadership powerful—not our own skills or insights. As Henry Blackaby has written, “Find out where God is working and join him there.”

Take this approach even in your strategic planning: staying connected to Jesus, listening for the voice of the Spirit, discerning our next step, then looking around and listening again. We might be able to see clearly the end goal where we need to go, but we often need to hear from God step by step how to get there. Do this together with others on our team, listening to God together.

Spirit-led Leadership Simplified

Listen for the voice of the Holy Spirit in all aspects of life: how he wants you to grow next, who he wants you to invest in, where he wants you to focus your energy. And trust that God is working in others too. Help them learn to listen to the direction of the Holy Spirit. This mutual leaning on the Spirit should be the default posture for our leadership, our discipling relationships, the way we are helping others develop, and our own personal life.

If it is not, we become the branch that is no longer connected to the vine, believing we can lead with no nutrients and no energy source. As Jesus said, “No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me” (John 15:4).

Note: A version of this entry first appeared on Christianity Today.

That was a great coaching moment!

Most coaching assumes a formalized coaching relationship with a beginning, a middle, and an end, with clear goals to be accomplished along the way. However, you can also use your coaching skills in less formal ways– just as a way of relating and interacting. Think of it as a “coaching moment” instead of a “coaching relationship.”

Steps to Help You Make Decisions with God

You’ve got a big decision to make. When you make a decision based on the human intellect alone you might come away with a “good decision”; in contrast, when you consider God’s perspective on a matter you engage the spiritual dimension. This will lead you  down the path of prayerful decision making.

Can you find coaching in the Bible?

If you are trying to help others understand the biblical basis for coaching, here are two key scripture passages to help.

9 Ways Coaching Aligns with Biblical Principles

You may be wondering if coaching is biblical. The Bible never commands us to coach. In fact, the word coach is never used. So why coach? Should we even coach? Here are 9 ways coaching aligns with biblical principles.

The #1 Secret to Raising Self-Led Adults

You want your kids to become self-led adults. People who make good decisions, live into their gifts and talents, and contribute to their communities. The teen years are when the rubber hits the road. 

Purpose-filled Conversations with Your Teens

Conversations with your teens can feel one-sided. There are a lot of grunts and minute head nods, or if you’re lucky–one word answers. But this is a time in their development where they make important decisions that have lasting consequences. So, how do you move past casual chats to more meaningful and purpose-filled conversations with your teens? 

Coaching your kids

Translating your coaching skills to support your parenting will help you raise kids who have a clear understanding of who they are and have a solid framework for making good decisions. 

5 signs that you could be a better coach

You’ve been coaching for a while now. You may have even completed coach certification; but you feel there is something more… Are you coaching at your optimal level or could you be a better coach? How do you really know how well you’re doing? 

5 Steps to Clarify Your Values

Having trouble moving forward in your ministry goals? What about those you serve? If you are struggling to fill seats and find volunteers the issue may not be WHAT you are doing but a disconnect from the WHY.

Learning to trust your coach and your team

Are you at the top of your game? Even if you are, are you ready for what’s next? So many gifted and purposed pastors burn out because they are playing a solo game. Learning how to work with your team raises your effectiveness and reach in ministry.