Question >> ” what do u think of this paid church coaching trend? is it biblical? Somewhere deep down, I just can’t imagine Paul turning to Timothy and saying I’ll help you for $250 per month? ”
djchuang >> I am seeing a growing trend of people offering their services as a coach or mentor. There’s already been a growing trend of coaching professionals in the past decade (cf. Professional Coaches and Mentors Association, International Coach Federation, CoachInc.com, International Association of Coaching, MentorCoach), and now there are coaching programs specifically for the church & ministry world.
It can be said that just as you’d have a coach to help you perform as an athlete, or hiring a coach to improve your golf or tennis game, people can hire a coach for developing their leadership capacity. This is all acceptable in the sports world, in the business & non-profit organizational world (cf. executive coaching), in the personal development & self-improvement world (cf. life coaching), and yet the practice has raised some questions in the church & ministry world. (i.e. Ministry Coaching International, Leadership2Go: an online mentoring community, Partners in Church Consulting Coaching Network, Next Coaching Network, International M Network’s 7-Day Mentoring Immersion, Expo Coaching, Pastors Coaching Network, Celera Group, to name a few)
While there is some overlap between mentoring, coaching, spiritual formation, teaching & training, disciple-making, the distinction isn’t paid vs. unpaid. Right? I’ve personally benefitted greatly from all of these kinds of relationships, both paid and unpaid.
Should coaches & mentors be paid or not? Here’s what I think at this time: the Bible doesn’t forbids payment being involved in these relationships per se. Just as there are pastors who are paid and those who are unpaid, there are coaches who are paid and unpaid. So for me, this matter is one of freedom and personal conscience.
Personally, I think I’m at an age and stage of life where I may be called upon to be a coach or mentor to a few others. I’d love to do that for free, personally. However, not being financially independent, I do have to use a large portion of my time to earn wages to provide for myself and family. Where money fits in the equation is that if I were to be paid as a coach or mentor, then I would be able to commit more time and energy to it than if I volunteered as a mentor.
Would you pay for a coach or mentor? Why or why not? How do you decide when you would be an unpaid mentor to someone else, and when you’d charge money for being a coach / mentor?
[photo credit: jfre81]