You have probably heard the statistics that a large percentage of pastors will leave the ministry this coming year, post covid, because of the toll the past year and a half has taken on their lives. I heard one Christian leader estimate 40% will quit.
The reality is that pastors and leaders in churches have had a difficult time navigating all the turmoil. In addition to their own families they have had to care for members of their flocks who have faced financial and personal struggles, funerals of family members, unemployment, businesses being shuttered, marriages in crisis, and the political divide. Our medical communities did amazing jobs facing the health crisis, but our clergy have had to shoulder the fallout of the crisis.
I wondered if any of the pastors/church planters/Christian ministry leaders we have the privilege of serving at CMM were in the 40% number, so I asked our ten coaches if any of their coachees are leaving the pastorate or plan to leave. Their answer? Zero. Zero have plans to leave the ministry.
We then looked back to the last 100 coachees and the answer was still zero. Of course the next question I asked is “Why?” Why are our coachees remaining in the struggle?
Is it because of the talent of CMM Gospel Coaches? We do have a great team of coaches—they are, as I fondly call them, a superb golf team! But that’s not the secret.
Is it because of who we choose to work with? We are careful to work with coachable leaders. Some leaders are not a good fit for what we do because they are not ready to be coached or were assigned to get a coach and don't want one. The type of leader who is self-sufficient, arrogant, trusting in their abilities and uber gifts are not ready for coaching. But that is not the reason.
Is it because I developed a coaching conversation and system that works? No, that's not it either.
The secret to the fact that zero coachees are leaving the ministry right now is the Gospel of Jesus Christ. For all the amazing skills a Gospel Coach has in asking great questions, identifying key ministry objectives, and working the plan there is only one power that we rely on.
Gospel Coaching, as we say, is an intentional gospel conversation with focused discussions on the leader’s relational, personal, missional, and spiritual life. It is the single most important ingredient in the health and sustainability of the leader.
If you need a coach, we are here to help. We have added Olivia Jackson to our team, a new woman coaching catalyst for ministry spouses or leaders. If you want to support a leader in need of a coach you can reach Olivia at https://www.cmmnet.org/users/olivia-jackson.