Now? What If? What Now?

By Jim LaDoux
Director of Coaching & Coaching School

Jesus asked questions all the time—he was constantly responding to questions with questions of his own. If you count every question he asked in the four Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John) you come up with an astonishing number—287! And these weren’t easy-answer questions—for example:

  • “Which is easier: to say to this paralyzed man, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up, take your mat and walk?’” (Mark 2:9, NIV).
  • “Salt is good, but if it loses its saltiness, how can you make it salty again?” (Mark 9:50a, NIV).
  • “Why do you call me good?” (Mark 10:18a, NIV).

If Jesus is primarily interested in our relational growth, and His primary strategy for catalyzing that growth is questions, then we know questions are the key to our growth. In our coaching work with ministry leaders at Vibrant Faith, we use questions to help people clarify their path forward. And there’s no better time to clear away the fog from your path. Use these progressive sets of questions to assess where you are, where you might go, and what your next steps can be. This is a menu of options, not a step-by-step guide. Just use the questions that seem most helpful to your next steps… 


1. What is happening now (what. who, when, and how often)?
2. What is the effect or result of this?
3. Have you already taken any steps towards your goal?
4. How would you describe what you did?
5. Where are you now in relation to your goal?
6. On a scale of one to 10, where are you?
7. What has contributed to your success so far?
8. What progress have you made so far?
9. What is working well right now?
10. What is required of you?
11. Why haven’t you reached that goal already?
12. What’s your definition of the big picture?
13. In what ways are you playing too small right now?
14. What’s possible?
15. What are you not seeing, and who can help you see bigger?
16. What needs more attention, right now, today?
17. What needs less attention, right now, today?
18. What is most important for you to tackle today?
19. What are you pretending not to know?
20. When has worrying paid off for you?

What If?

1. What are your options?
2. What do you think you need to do next?
3. What could be your first step?
4. What do you think you need to do to get a better result (or closer to your goal)? 5. What else could you do?
6. Who else might be able to help?
7. What would happen if you did nothing?
8. What has worked for you already? How could you do more of that?
9. What would happen if you did that?
10. What is the hardest/most challenging part of that for you?
11. What advice would you give to a friend about that?
12. What would you gain/lose by doing/saying that?
13. If someone did/said that to you what do you think would happen?
14. What’s the best/worst thing about that option?
15. Which option do you feel ready to act on?
16. How have you tacked this/a similar situation before?
17. What could you do differently?
18. Who do you know who has encountered a similar situation?
19. If anything was possible, what would you do?
20. Say more…

What Now?

1. How are you going to go about it?
2. What do you think you need to do right now?
3. How are you going to do that?
4. How will you know when you have done it?
5. Is there anything else you can do?
6. On a scale of one to 10, what is the likelihood of your plan succeeding?
7. What would it take to make it a 10?
8. What obstacles are getting in the way of success?
9. What roadblocks do you expect or require planning?
10. What resources can help you?
11. What is missing?
12. What’s one small step you can take now?
13. When are you going to start?
14. How will you know you have been successful?
15. What support do you need to get that done?
16. What will happen (or, what is the cost) of you NOT doing this?
17. What do you need from others to help you achieve this?
18. What are three actions you can take that would make sense this week?
19. On a scale of one to 10, how committed/motivated are you to doing it?
20. What would it take to make it a 10?

If you’d like a guide who can help you make real progress on your path forward, check out our coaching options—we can tailor what we do to fit your needs, or your congregation’s needs. To schedule a FREE 30-minute coaching consultation, just click HERE.

Jim LaDoux is the longtime Director of Coaching & Coaching School for Vibrant Faith. Jim lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota with his wife—he has two adult sons. He’s been a coach since 1992, and has a Master of Management Arts and is a certified PCC (Professional Certified Coach).

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