Monday, June 10, 2013

"A Generous Presence" - Spiritual Leadership and the Art of Coaching

I am reading, slowly, Rochelle Melander's "A Generous Presence" - her book on 'Spiritual Leadership and the Art of Coaching' (The Alban Institute, 2006).  So I will blog briefly as I digest it.
I am exploring the world of Coaching lately - the application of this skill and discipline particularly to the Christian ministry. Immediately I can see the power of coaching as a spiritual leadership mode. Without much research, I would it say that it is sadly lacking or overlooked in the tool-kit of most clergy in my circles.
Her book invites slow and reflective reading. Each chapter is short, with a 'Try'and a 'Talk' section.
Three sections shape the book: 1. The Coaching Collage; 2. The Coaching Toolbox; and 3. The Coaching Core.
I am struck immediately at the resonance between coaching and missional ministry. Both start with the agenda, needs and interests of the client, the other person. Both disciplines approach the other assuming that God is at work and our job is to come alongside and walk with the other, closer to the mind and purposes of God. Melander says: "Coaching uses what has become known as the accompaniment model of mission work." (p. 40).
She is giving me, in part 1 a sense of the heart or experience of coaching as a spiritual leadership orientation.
My expectation is high that this will prove a tonic for me as a person and as a spiritual leader.

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