Life Coaches Helping Set Young People up for Success

By Liz Sweet

Are you competent with life skills? Do you want to make a difference in the life of a young person? Do you want your practical knowledge to have an eternal impact? If so, Life Coaching may be for you.

Life Coaching needs responsible, dedicated people who are willing to help others who need guidance in the functional aspects of life.

Xenos is reaching an increasing number of people with difficult backgrounds. Many people coming out of low-income backgrounds have not had the support that they need to tackle some of the practical skills in life. With a little help and encouragement, students can live in a ministry house, land a good job, and go to college. But without help, simple things, such as not being able to get a driver’s license, impede their progress toward these goals. Life coaches provide practical guidance that is crucial to helping students take the next step toward becoming independent, self-sufficient adults.

Student candidates are pursuing a life centered on Christ: spiritually responsive, engaged in fellowship and discipleship, and living in a ministry house or aspiring to live in one. They are in their sophomore year of high school or older; students under 18 need parental permission to have a life coach.

Life coaches meet with low-income students weekly to help them develop life skills, such as:
--Landing and keeping a job
--Getting a driver’s license
--Accessing good health care
--Completing high school and/or pursuing further education or training
--Accessing financial aid
--Following a budget
--Working hard and being a valuable employee
--Loving family members and setting healthy boundaries
--Developing healthy habits: eating well, exercising, planning, establishing routines

Life Coaches receive guidance on topics to cover and resources that can assist in navigating areas of need.

Life Coaching is one of the most important ways we can impact individual people, the church, and society as a whole. Through helping these students, we represent God and contribute to transformed lives.

"For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in;…The King will answer and say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.’" --Matthew 25:35, 40

Jordan Johnson is a student who met with life coaches, Kathy and Andy Steinman. Here is his testimony:

….as I began to take steps for God, I was met with significant barriers each time. All were self-induced impediments, as I had no category outside of reckless spending (I did not know how to budget), relying on people in the body for transportation (at age 20, I didn't have my license, nor did I have knowledge of how to obtain it), and I expected cool job opportunities to come to ME (worst assumption ever). On top of everything, my home life didn't change, and so often, I would feel pressure to give my resources to my struggling family, which only enabled them and handicapped my personal ability to serve. It reduced my effectiveness for the lord's work, significantly. 

Kathy and Andy Steinman were conduits of God's patience, grace, and provision. 

'The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. (2 Corinthians 10:4-5)'

Kathy and Andy demolished many strongholds that plagued me psychologically, through love. That was their weapon of choice. And they brought their weapon every time we met, equipped and ready to affirm that God cares and that he hasn't forgotten about me.

I remember being so downcast at the deficit that I felt from my upbringing. But month-by-month, through their investment, I began to feel more and more a part of society. The self-fulfilling prophecies began to grow silent. I began to feel more motivated to do things that I gave up on, and told no one about. College was one of those things. I never had much academic success, but thanks to their help last semester, I accomplished making the Dean's List for the very first time!

Without Kathy and Andy's influence as life-coaches, those strongholds would likely still exist in my mind, subtly accusing God's character. I am thankful for them, as they have played a pivotal role in helping me believe that I can make an impact.

Kathy and Andy commented, “One of the glories of Christianity should be the demonstration of diversity--that we are all one in Christ. We are seeing this in the high school and college ministries. To be a part of helping some of these kids learn to navigate life is critically important. But this is far from a one-sided benefit. We have been ultra-blessed by our mentoring relationships, which have continued to last beyond mentoring.”

Stories like Jordan’s emphasize the impact that life coaches can have. If you are drawn to this important ministry, consider applying. Applicants for life coaching need to be fully engaged in a home church, recommended by home church leaders, undergo a background check, and able to meet with a student 1-2 hours a week.

Please contact Liz Sweet at sweetl@xenos.org to apply and/or if you have other questions.