Follow Me

by Joe Donaldson

Of the four Gospel accounts, my personal favorite is Mark’s. It is one of the most compact at just 16 chapters. The introduction of Jesus – including his baptism by John and his wilderness journey – are wrapped up in just 5 verses! It’s at this point John is arrested and Jesus returns to Galilee to begin his preaching and teaching ministry.

One of the first things Jesus does is to invite his first disciples to join him. The typical Sunday School version of this story suggests Jesus was a stranger to them and they abandoned all without so much as a second thought to follow Jesus.

Included in the group who would become Jesus’ disciples were some who had been John’s disciples. John had taught them about the coming Messiah. They were present on at least two occasions when John pointed to Jesus and declared, “Look, the Lamb of God.” So, Simon and Andrew knew Jesus before that day when Jesus interrupted their fishing and invited them to follow him.

It appears these same men had simultaneously worked while following John. The concept of abandoning all and trailing behind a Rabbi full-time does not appear to be supported here – especially when we see a few verses later that Jesus and his disciples went to Simon and Andrew’s home where Jesus healed many people – including Simon’s mother-in-law.

While there are plenty of New Testament references imploring us to forsake all, to take up our cross, and follow Jesus, the practice by Christ-followers through two millennia has not been to live a life of transient singleness depending on the goodwill of others for food and shelter. Teaching this position has created confusion, guilt, and hypocrisy!

Instead, I suggest Jesus’ words to his followers in the Great Commission provide a better understanding of discipleship: to make disciples of all people, “as we are going!” Instead of choosing between living our lives or following Jesus, we live Christ-focused, Christ-informed, Christ-infused lives to such an extent the love, person, and teachings of Jesus permeate all we do – including our coaching!

This is what CCNI’s Core Competencies reflect in the Christian coach. Each of the competencies includes descriptors of how the competency will show up in your coaching. Just like the rest of your life, these competencies will be present in varying degrees depending on the particular coaching client and/or topic. Take a look at the updated competencies and conduct a self-evaluation of a recent coaching session. Where might these competencies have come into play? How might they strengthen your coaching for your clients?

It is a privilege to serve you through CCNI. I’d love to hear from you! Email me at

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