Cultivate a Coach’s Heart by Tony StoltzfusNov 11th, 2013 | By Tony Stoltzfus | Category: Featured Content, Transformational Coaching
How do you cultivate a coach’s heart for people? The place in our own experience that most exemplifies the heart of a coach is our relationship with God. Powerful coaching comes from studying, internalizing and imitating the Father’s heart toward us.
Let’s step back for a moment and look at the way God works with us on the change issues in our lives. Even before you ever became a Christian, God had already chosen you and decided he wanted to work with you. In fact, Paul states in Ephesians,
“And you he made alive, when you were dead through the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience. Among these we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, following the desires of body in mind, and so were by nature children of wrath like the rest of mankind.” Ephesians 2:1-3
A pretty ugly picture, isn’t it? We were God’s enemies, thumbing our nose at Him and freely aligning ourselves with the prince of darkness. We chose to take over the life God had given us and to live it in direct opposition to His intentions. We were dead—walking corpses in God’s eyes—wallowing in the empty pursuit of our lowest animal desires. Everything about us screamed out for God to give us what we deserved and blot us off of the face of the earth. But, amazingly, God saw something different:
“But God, who is rich in mercy, out of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead through our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with him, and made us sit with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.” Ephesians 2:4-7
God’s response to us was totally out of keeping with what we looked like on the surface. Think about it: what did God see in you when he made that incomprehensible choice? What motive made Him willing to send His own son to be inhumanly tortured and to die for you, when you preferred to be His enemy? What in all the problems and failures and lost promise of your life led Christ to put off His divine nature and be betrayed by His best friends just to reach out to you? Paul cites two reasons for this amazing gift: grace and destiny:
“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not your own doing, it is the gift of God—not because of works, lest any man should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” Ephesians 2:8-10
God gave you something you didn’t deserve (life in place of death) simply as an expression of His own character. He is grace, and he is mercy, and therefore he chose to act toward you out of His own heart instead of out of what you had coming. But there’s a second reason: God made you for something. Even when your life was a mess, God never lost sight of your destiny—the good works He had created you for. God’s perception wasn’t limited to your obvious problems. He looked at what you were made to be, and seeing that He loved you—enough to choose you to become part of the bride for His only son.
In our relationship to God we see the best example of coaching: believing in others despite their flaws and failures, and helping them find their purpose and place in life.
Tony Stoltzfus is an author, leadership coach, master coach trainer and director of the Leadership Metaformation Institute. Additional information on this topic can be found in Tony’s book, Leadership Coaching.