Mining for Gold Among the Roses
I have always said the people we work with and minister to are our greatest assets. It turns out Tom Camacho, author of Mining for Gold: Developing Kingdom Leaders Through Coaching, feels the same way. He says, “The greatest treasure is found in people, not shiny yellow rocks. The people around us are treasures of unimaginable worth. In God’s eyes they are treasures of pure gold.” With his creative analogy of mining for gold, he takes us through clearly outlined steps of Coaching Leadership that show how we as leaders are called “to mine for the gold in others, cooperate with God as He refines that gold, and then help them invest that gold in the kingdom.” He outlines a three-step process of finding potential leaders, helping to refine them, and encouraging them to do the same with other potential leaders. I also love how he reminds us that “God is the great Refiner, who patiently transforms leaders until their heart and character beautifully reflect His own. He is a miner and a refiner of leaders.”
The following statement Camacho made caused me to get a little agitated and it also validated my research topic once again: “The mission of the kingdom around the world is in continuous need of a fresh supply of godly leaders. What would be possible if your church or ministry had an instant supply of twice the amount of thriving leaders you have today? How could you impact your community if you had a continuous new crop of thriving leaders to serve and bring forward your dream and vision? The possibilities are endless. The world needs more godly thriving leaders.” I couldn’t agree more, but ironically we would already have twice as many leaders if we would just tap into the immense resource of female leaders. Yes, we need to coach and mine for more leaders, but when many churches and organizations limit their leadership to half the population, namely the male half, we end up with an extreme leadership shortage. More women graduate from college and have joined the workforce than men, yet still women are only “25 percent of executive- and senior-level officials and managers, hold only 20 percent of board seats, and are only 6 percent of CEOs.” Also, when female pastors only make up 9 percent of the total in the U.S., we are going to have a leadership shortage. This is why the solution to my research problem is men in key leadership positions sponsoring/mentoring/coaching/mining for gold with potential women leaders around them.
The author also created a clever little acrostic spelling out the word GOLD to highlight his four key concepts of Mining for Gold/Coaching Leadership:
- Gold is Everywhere
- Open Your Eyes to See It
- Learn the Skills to Draw it Out
- Develop Others Continuously
I do agree that gold (leaders) is/are everywhere and that many of them are missed and need to be drawn out and refined to be the leaders they are called to be. I also think leaders are not working to reproduce themselves is others in order for the leadership train to keep on moving down the road. One of the reasons for this is what Camacho highlights in saying, “We have a real enemy, the devil, who wants to steal that gold and will fight the process at every turn. “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” (John 10:10) I actually quote this verse quite often in my counseling practice by asking people if they have heard of the verse that talks about the fact that God came so they could have an abundant life. Most people say yes and agree that they want this “life to the fullest” that God promises. Then I ask them what the first half of that same verse says…no one ever seems to know what the first half of John 10:10 says. When I tell them it says, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy”, they are often shocked and surprised. Then I explain that God put that in there to warn us of the one who wants to steal, kill and destroy this abundant life He wants to give us. It is a warning and reminder that we are in the midst of a battle for our soul and our future. I also believe the gender wars we are in the midst of today are a direct attack from the enemy who wants to steal, kill and destroy the beautiful potential we have for gender-balanced leadership across all sectors.
I agree with the author’s statement, especially when it comes to developing women leaders in order to increase gender-balanced leadership: “In order to see the gold God has placed in a person, we need to see them with the eyes of the Spirit. To draw out someone’s true potential, we need to cooperate with the Spirit of God.” Seeing with God’s eyes would be an incredible gift, and the closest we will come to that is asking Him to give us His eyes to see those around us the way He does. Hopefully this will help the world see the Gold among the Roses (meaning the leaders among the women). We also need to be careful to monitor ours and others’ view of God. Camacho says, “When we carry a false view of God, our behavior reflects that false view. If we think He is angry and judging us every moment, our hearts respond accordingly. We run from Him and hide. The image of God you carry inside your mind and heart is one of the most critical parts of who you are. If you have a wrong view of Him, you cannot really know who you are.” I have seen this to be true in my office time and time again, and it has always been sad to me when people have a very punitive view of God and therefore see themselves the same way. Overall, I feel like the book was a very simple reminder of the need to develop the leaders among us…especially the female ones :-).
 Tom Camacho, Mining for Gold: Developing Kingdom Leaders Through Coaching, (Review PDF copy), 19.
 “Women in S&P 500 Companies,” Catalyst: Workplaces that Work for Women, last modified February 2, 2018, http://www.catalyst.org/knowledge/women-sp-500-companies.
 Tom Camacho, Mining for Gold: Developing Kingdom Leaders Through Coaching, (Review PDF copy), 5-6.
10 responses to “Mining for Gold Among the Roses”
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Hey Jakey-Jake, thanks for being a champion of women! I like your insights about Jon 10:10. I’m wondering how often you come across women who are reluctant to rise up as leaders, not because it’s not their gifting or call, but because they believe that scripture limits them. Do you even meet women who stifle, rather than empower, other women?
Thanks Jenny-Jenn! Glad to take advantage of any opportunity to advance women. Yes I meet many women who feel that scripture limits them, therefore they limit themselves. I also meet women who are worse than men when it comes to oppressing or stifling female leaders. It is sad when I see women attacking their own. I wish more women would bind together and rise up against the oppressive system. I have always fantasized about women in churches all over the country picketing or having a sit-in at churches. 🙂
You are a treasure, real gold, and I am so thankful to have the past two years together. Like you and Camacho said, people are of unimaginable worth.
I have enjoyed conversing and writing back and forth with you. Thanks for putting up with me. You and your sweet bride are top shelf in my opinion! See you on the Zoom Monday, and across the Pond after that. It will be here before you know it…
Thanks so much Jay, the feelings and sentiments are mutual and I’m grateful for all the lifelong friends I have made in the program. Since you so graciously put up with me, I was happy to put up with you (which was very enjoyable actually). I love you like a brother and look forward to more play time in London. Thanks for showing our entire cohort such unimaginable worth.
Jake. I too thought this book a a simple reminder of what needed to take place in and around ministry groups. I was talking with someone today about a woman interviewing at a Samoan church and they didn’t want her. So many cultures are dominated by men and can’t see beyond the limitations that this produces. When I read you blogs I often see my daughter and her struggle to find a voice. Thanks Jake for being that Gold to so many. (one day we will make it to tri-city to play with you and Jenn)
Thanks so much Greg, hope my dissertation work can make a difference for your daughter and mine. I have so appreciated getting to know you during this program and we are going to hold you guys to coming to visit us so we can play together…as fellow Drs.
Congrats on finishing well! 2 years down and dissertation challenge to go! Awesome my friend and brother. I am very proud of you.
Thanks for your singular focus and egalitarian challenge to the global leadership forum. I appreciate your spiritual warfare exegesis from John 10:10. Outstanding!
Thanks for connecting your counseling practice to this week’s book. I was hoping to see your viewpoints and was not disappointed in your theological and practical counselor positions.
I like Camacho and support his coaching ideas. His ideas work on the 80/20 ratio, but it is the 20% that I always seem to run into. They are the hard cases and outliers who do not by design or choice fit the statistical norm. Trish’s friend said it well, Christ came to minister to the “those on the outside.” They did not want a Jesus coach, but they were changes by His words, miracles, food, and healing. We don’t get to do those kinds of miracles, at least not that often. So, our mentee’s, or in your case counselee’s, must volunteer to participate. When they don’t, it gets fun.
I always offer to help them with incarceration when they choose not to voluntarily participate. Have you tried that yet?
JAke. good job
and Congratulations! This is my last blog post.
I have never understood the limited role that has been given most women in the church and other Christian leadership. It is foolish to me to continue to cut in half the potential pool of talented and committed leaders capable of providing new insights and possibilities.
I hope that your dissertation will be picked up and utilized by many in the church, encouraging them to reconsider this narrow minded position.
Glad you joined me in this cohort. Looking forward to England and beyond. Happy writing until then.
Hi Jake! THIS IS OUR LAST POST – how can two short years be done already??? Your posts always resonate with me – you are an amazing advocate for gender equality and for calling out important social issues. I am so grateful that this DMin program brought our families together – although our weekly chats may end our time together is not over yet! Thank you for your wisdom, humility, and humor! I am so blessed to call you a friend and peer mentor! 🙂 I am a better person for knowing you…