Hiccups, voices and Uber drivers: The value of coaching

June 23, 2020

How are you handling the hiccups in your life? Not actual hiccups, but the short-term disruptions to your long-term plans.

The current pandemic is a major hiccup we all face, but compared to a lifetime, it is just short-term even though it seems it will last forever.

How can we cut through the fog of our current circumstances to arrive at the future God has planned for us? A coach can help us find the answer.

A coach functions like an Uber driver — someone who facilitates our movement from where we are to where we want to go. A good example can be found in the movie, “How to Train Your Dragon.” The hero in the story is appropriately named Hiccup. His whole life was a giant hiccup. He failed at the only thing that mattered to his Viking tribe: he would not kill a dragon. So, defeated, depressed, dejected and deserted, he could not see his way clearly into a meaningful future until a coach stepped in to lift the fog.

His “heartthrob” Astrid stood with him to help him see more clearly. Through a series of masterful questions, Astrid guided Hiccup to face his circumstances realistically, to celebrate his prior successes, to catch a glimpse of a brighter future and to capture his next step on the journey. During that brief conversation, Hiccup discovered for himself how he could move beyond his hiccups to pursue his unique purpose in life. That’s the role of a coach.

The Church Planting NC (CPNC) tribe is building a culture of coaching to benefit planters and their families. The life of a church planter and his family is filled with highs, lows and lots of hiccups, often coming as a multitude of voices speaking into their lives and ministries.

Planters hear the voices of their sending church and their core team. Financial contributors as well as community leaders speak into their situation. Family members, friends and mentors have a say, as well. And, of course, planters hear the “voices” of their own fears, inadequacies and failures. All these “telling voices” can cloud the planter’s vision like a deep fog settling over the seashore.

That’s where a coach steps in to become a “listening voice” in a sea of “telling voices.” Coaches take a “dive” with planters to guide them toward clarity and to help them discover what is most important in their life at that moment. This “dive” provides a structure for the coach to ask a series of questions for the planter to answer as he listens for the only voice that really matters — God’s voice.

During this clarifying conversation, coaches guide planters to see their circumstances from God’s perspective, to celebrate what God is already doing, to discern what God is inviting them to do next, and then to identify specific action steps they are willing to take that will move them forward. In this way, a coach empowers a planter to get past the hiccups as they pursue their unique, God-given purpose in life and in church planting.

The CPNC team believes that no planter should plant alone. The team is committed to delivering great coaching to every church planter. Great coaching will yield healthier planters who will start, lead and multiply healthier churches, which will enable all North Carolina Baptists to get where God wants us to be together — to get past the hiccups, becoming the strongest force in history to impact lostness through disciple-making.


by Mark Harrison 
/  Church Planting NC Contractor  /  Baptist State Convention of North Carolina

15 vital things you can give your pastor

October is pastor appreciation month. As a pastor for 25 years, here are some ideas for things your church can give your pastor:Give him a place.Give him a place where he is free to preach the gospel.Give him a place where he is accepted for who he is, not compared to who he...

Why I’m excited about this year’s Pastors’ Conference

The past year has been difficult. The world we live in today looks quite different than it did just 18 months ago. Many things we were accustomed to doing have either disappeared, been restricted, or have changed, for better or worse. One of the biggest changes was the separation...

The local school: A great place for church ministry

For the most part I really enjoyed school. However, there were some aspects of the time that I enjoyed more than others. I enjoyed the learning, the socialization, and of course, the sports. I found most of the assignments manageable with the exception of writing papers. Sitting...

Ready or not, here they come! Evaluating your church with fresh eyes

Is your church ready for guests who may visit your church after first watching online? Are you ready for members who may return after an extended COVID-19 break? What steps can you take to make a great first impression and reintegrate those who want to reengage with your...

Why personal evangelism is a key ingredient for turnaround churches

Many pastors and churches today are struggling. Pastors are discouraged, and some are leaving the ministry altogether. It’s been estimated that more than 80% of churches are plateaued or declining. Yet, some churches are seeing a turnaround. A fresh wind is blowing. These churches...

Looking forward to being on mission together

In late August, a series of organizational changes were unanimously approved by our state convention’s executive committee aimed at advancing all of us forward as a movement of churches on mission together. We’ve been working toward implementing these changes, and I hope that our...

Fostering and adoption: Why forever matters

“Which one is my mommy now?” I never imagined a child asking someone to point out who their mother was. However, the little blonde-haired girl named Ally, who I was holding that day, had already lived with three different families in the span of 15 months since she and her sister...

10 principles for leading in church revitalization

Many churches in our world today are in deep need of revitalization. In order to lead your church in revitalization, there are some basic principles you must follow. Here are 10 principles for a revitalizer: Be humble. You must swallow your pride, humble yourself and love even...

0 Comments

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Stay connected by signing up for the N.C. Baptist monthly newsletter.

Select Language ^

Share This

Share this with your friends!