By: Jake Ferguson

Coaching has as many styles as there are coaches.  If the old cliché, “There is more than one way to skin a cat,” has any truth; it has truth in coaching.  It is recognized that coaches will lead and mentor LifeGroup Leaders according to personality, life experience, and unique relationships with God.  The relationships that the coach builds over time with their Leaders and Hosts will pave a way for spiritual growth and biblical fellowship.

What is a Coach and what does a Coach do?  In short, a coach is a leader whose intentional investment in the lives of other leaders encourages them to do and be better; better not just in their leadership role…but better, period.  A Coach calls out the best in a leader.  The relationship between Coach and leader is the engine that God uses to drive the leader to reach their God given purposes.

A coaching relationship is successful when the coach invests in the leader in such a way that the leader feels cared for and able to accomplish the task.  Four things that a Coach must keep in mind when mentoring a LifeGroup Leader and Host:

  1. They EQUIP the leader and host

2. They SERVE the leader and host

3. They SHEPHERD those under their care

4. And they further RECRUIT more leaders and hosts through relational development



By: Megan Saurman

Leading, mentoring and coaching. All these words seem to carry the same similar theme… moving people in a direction, aiming to reach a goal, implementing wisdom to help another person or group be successful. How each of these words accomplish that end result though is very unique.

If you are praying about what role is right for you and if you can be more than one of these in the same season lets explore their differences and the way each one works in its own method.

You can absolutely be all of these at the same time, you can be a LifeGroup Leader and a LifeGroup Coach simultaneously  – the key is to know how much you can take on and still be highly effective, and to pray about who in your sphere of influence needs you to be which role in their life.

Leading a LifeGroup means you provide a clear vision for your LifeGroup. You are growing a certain amount of people in God’s word, towards Next Steps in their faith. Your main priority is to love them where they are at, and help them be successful in reaching new levels in their faith and relationship with God. Cover them with support, and help them stay focused while their relationship with God is becoming deeper and more consistent.

Mentoring within a LifeGroup, which is part of the LifeGroup Leader’s role, is when you identify someone within your LifeGroup who has potential and interest in being a leader and you begin raising them up by not only leading them but also sharing your wisdom, life experiences, and your personal methods of growing closer to God and in God’s word. Intentionally take them along side you and tell them how you have been taught, share with them the positives and negatives of your own life experiences, and how to start being leaders themselves by slowly allowing them to participate in co leading with you.

Coaching a LifeGroup is a separate dynamic all together. The reason you can be a Coach and a LifeGroup Leader at the same time is because you will be coaching a different LifeGroup than the one you are leading. Coaching a LifeGroup means your role will be a listening ear to other LifeGroup Leaders and you will ask them a series of questions that draw an answer from within them, which will teach them to recount their observations, be objectionable about situations and learn to problem solve using the wisdom they themselves have learned. Yes, there be occasional times that you will have to offer your own advice, opinion, and fresh ideas to the situation.The best way to effectively coach is to be a sound board for the LifeGroup Leader you have been placed with, and to draw answers out of them so they learn to be a more effective leader who raises up more effective leaders.



By: Megan Saurman

Everyone. LifeGroup Leaders included. Coaches teach, train, and encourage others towards a certain direction. If you are a Leader then why do you need someone Coaching you? Because being on top can be lonely, and because as a LifeGroup Leader who doles out constant clarity, encouragement, wisdom and vision to your LifeGroup Members, you equally need someone pouring all those strengths right back into your life. 
As a LifeGroup Leader, should a Coach be your only source of receiving instruction, training and encouragement? No, but they are one of the only sources available that are simply there for you without asking anything in return. Here are 3 ways that you can benefit as a LifeGroup Leader by having a Coach in your corner: 
  • LifeGroup Leaders need to be refreshed on the vision and calling of being a Leader. Honestly, not all days do we as Leaders wake up motivated, not weighed down by life’s circumstances, ready to enthusiastically pour into other people. Coaches are meant to be there when we feel off track to help us continue to press on towards growing others, bring to mind why we live in biblical community, and to pray for us when our lives need some encouragement. Their enthusiasm is contagious on the days we need it most. 
  • Coaches have the playbook. Sometimes even as a Leader you may run into a situation within your LifeGroup where you could use a second opinion, a fresh set of eyes, and a pipeline to church leadership. Coaches are there for you to run situations by, to be confidential and objectionable in tough situations, and to share wisdom on how to handle things that may be out of your comfort zone, they also know when it’s time for church leadership to be advised. 
  • The main priority for a Coach is you. They care about how you are spiritually growing, if you are taking enough Sabbath rest time, they care if you are successful as a LifeGroup Leader, if you have victories throughout the week, and they want to pray for you when struggles arise. Their calling as a Coach isn’t a job, its not a task, you are not on their to-do list, you are their ministry, and they want nothing less than to bless you. 


By: Jake Ferguson

Many would agree, LifeGroups within the church foster growth and community on a much deeper level than that of any given Sunday.  Just as any great house, the essential ingredient to its standing is its foundation.  Or, the accuracy of a bullet, rests upon the proficiency of its marksman.  The same is true for growing churches; that relationships are lived out in the context of biblical community to raise up disciples who make disciples.

If you were to ask 100 people what they thought about LifeGroups and why they are essential, you may find yourself 100 different responses.  LifeGroups do have varying goals and objectives, but most groups—if not all—contribute to the achievement of one or more of the following objectives:

The Development of Spiritual Maturity

Fellowship Among Members

Ministry Within and Outside the Group

A LifeGroup by itself is not the main contributor of the growth of a church or its members.  It is the community of believers within the group who extend the Gospel to one another inside and outside of the group to maintain and advance Christ’s Kingdom.

The three objectives listed above, faithfully lived out, and extended towards others are the qualities and traits that make LifeGroups so essential to the growth of the church.  Spiritual maturity among members of each group in conjunction with biblical fellowship will lead to ministry within and outside of the group environment.  LifeGroups are not a self-contained bubble of believers that repel everything on the outside, but instead, a family who comes together to reach others in a way that resembles that of Christ and His earthly ministry and to faithfully live out the Great Commission (Matthew 28:18-20).

Every Sunday we hear a wonderful message that challenges each listener in his or her own walk with the Lord.  Families are being loved on, new attendees are being welcomed and encouraged to be placed in their sweet spot, people are responding in faith by the moving of the Holy Spirit, and various ministries are reaching lost souls and growing disciples.  But all these things do not happen just on a Sunday morning: they’re happening in people’s homes during LifeGroup!  LifeGroups also help to equip and prepare believers to grow in their discipleship process.  Whether a believer has been saved for a month or fifty years, doing life together in biblical community and fellowship can sharpen anyone through every step of the way in their walk with Christ.  Spiritual maturity, fellowship with believers, and ministering to others is a heavy responsibility that all Christians are commanded to take part in.  It is essential for the church.  The church is the bride of Christ and we are to be His disciples by being the hands and feet of the Great Commission.

LifeGroups help members of the church to be loved into a growing relationship with Jesus Christ, equipping them for the mission at hand, pleasing and glorifying to God, to GO in the community, our nation, and to the ends of the world.




By: Megan Saurman

As LifeGroup Leaders we are discipling our LifeGroup members into growth, a slow purposeful steady incline of spiritual maturity to help them reach a goal of taking the next step into starting a LifeGroup themselves. As we witness to them about what being a LifeGroup Leader looks like we are building momentum with them about what God can do in their lives through community, prayers, daily reading, and serving. In order to reach that goal, we have to be consistently plugging them into the joy & momentum about what taking a step-in faith is all about. You have spent months investing into your LifeGroup so it’s important to not lose what you have gained with them in the busy Summertime shuffle.

So how do we keep the momentum up over the Summer with our LifeGroup? How do we remind them that Summer is also for Next Steps and continuing to keep a steady pace in growing closer to God? Here are a few practical ways to keep the energy high and the momentum building during Summer before our Fall LifeGroups kickoff:

  1. It’s hard to be motivated or have momentum if we are spiritually thirsty. Maintaining a healthy soul is key over the Summer, so check in and make sure they aren’t spiritually parched:
  • Ask them what they are reading daily or what podcasts they have enjoyed over Summer. Share what you have enjoyed.
  • Ask them if they have plugged into other churches while traveling to visit friends and family, if any sermon stood out to them.  Mention any sermon you heard that stood out to you as well.
  • Ask them what their prayers have looked like lately and if you could join with them in praying for a need to be met.

2. Send texts, or post on your LifeGroup Facebook page about what your church is doing over the Summer. Ask them if they plan on attending the events that church is asking our community to volunteer for or participate in. See if they would like to meet your family there to catch up.


3. As your members take Next Steps (listed below) over the Summer make a big deal celebrating this with your LifeGroup

  • Being baptized
  • Going on a mission trip
  • Attending the Belong class
  • Tithing for the first time
  • Joining a serve team
  • Starting their own LifeGroup in the Fall

Remember, momentum is contagious, and as a LifeGroup Leader it starts with YOU.

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