THE BENCH – A Supportive Community for Men in Christian Coaching

A Tale of Two Coaches

It was just a little over a year ago that two very different men, both Christian coaches and relatively new to the field, experienced a “God Moment”. It came through an online mastermind meeting sponsored by CCNI. We (Dave Peterson and Thomas Kenyon) joined the “Momentum Mastermind” led by Gary Wood at about the same time in the summer of 2017. That group was the catalyst for us becoming fast friends and trusted colleagues.

Diverse Backgrounds

While each of us comes from very different backgrounds (Dave – 32 year career as a senior pastor, married to his one and only Julie for over 40 years and father of four while living just outside metro New York City/Thomas – serial entrepreneur/biz owner, married to second wife, Lorene, with two step-daughters as a lifelong Florida native), we both have long recognized just how challenging it is for us guys to “do relationship” well, and the deleterious outcomes that this engenders. We also realize how much we, as Christian coaches, need the encouragement and support of other male coaches as we pursue this calling.

Filling a Need

The Momentum Mastermind was a great opportunity to fill this need. Fortunately for us, the group started very slowly and often it would just be us three guys along with CCNI’s operations manager, Melodee Claassen. This allowed for some quick relationship building.

A Safe Space

About the 3rd or 4th month of these meetings, I (Dave) asked for input concerning a personal situation I was facing in the local church where Julie and I were volunteering. I really don’t remember what was said, but it was encouraging and affirming to me. Seeing my transparency, Thomas sensed that this was a safe place for him to share a hurtful church experience as well.

Yes, I (Thomas), being a late-to-Christ man, wanted the wisdom of a couple of men who had lifetimes of deep church involvement.  I shared how my pastor from a church I had been very active in for 15 years had recently acted towards me. Dave immediately came alongside me. He encouraged me and let me know that this indeed was not how a good shepherd would treat a member of the flock. Needless to say, this endeared me to this Peterson fellow pretty quickly!

The safety of that open and affirming space in the mastermind resulted in the two of us deciding to chat outside of the group. We eventually entered into a barter coaching relationship. And as God loves to do, a couple of “knuckleheads” from the north and south struck up a fast friendship; the benefits of which have been far reaching.

THE BENCH is Born

To our surprise, one-year later we have been asked to lead a CCNI online meet-up group focused on men in Christian coaching. Knowing how much the mastermind group has impacted our lives and ministries, we gladly accepted and, beginning the second week of September 2018, we will be convening as THE BENCH – A Supportive Community for Men in Christian Coaching.

Our first meeting will take place on Friday, September 14, 2018, at 2pm Eastern. Further information will be forthcoming in the CCNI newsletter and you will be able to register at the website. Also feel free to reach out to us by email. This is a work in progress. Your input and ideas moving forward are invaluable! See you at THE BENCH.

Dave Peterson, CPLC – dave@newventurecoaching.com 

Thomas Kenyon, CPLC – Thomas@Real-LifeCoaching.com 

Co-Facilitators of THE BENCH

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