26 January 2010 ~ 2 Comments

Assessment Center – Day 1

One of the things I did before heading here was asked some people who had been through the Converge Church Planting Assessment Center what it all looked like.
I could only get so much of an overview.
So now that I am in it I will share with all of you who care about what we’re experiencing, and in addition it will now be online for some others to get an idea what to expect!

First a quick explanation cause we’ve been realizing that virtually no one understands what this part of the process it.
It isn’t an interview.
There isn’t one job opening for all 20 candidates to battle it out for.
It isn’t a reality show like The Apprentice.
It isn’t an application process.

For over 20 years Converge has run these assessments.  Churches from Converge as well as other churches in the country send people who are thinking about church planting, who they want to see church plant, who are wondering if they are supposed to start a church (definition of ‘church plant’ in case you’re really lost right now), or people who are maybe already in the process of planting a church even.
A bunch of people who have done church planting for years as well as people trained to understand personalities all watch you and interview for 3 days.
As a 3rd party, it is then their job to give the sending agencies their perspective on whether or not that candidates has the building blocks it will take to successfully be the lead person or couple for a new church.

Now that we’ve cleared that up, a brief overview of day 1.


In welcoming and explaining the process, they do a great job of reminding us that this isn’t about pass/fail.  Their heart in this process really is to help each person discover what it is that God has created them to do.

That being said, their job is to look at us all through the lens of whether or not we can be the lead people for a new church.  So on Friday we will receive 1 of 4 outcomes:
Not Recommended – this person would not make a good lead planter
Strong Conditions – slow down…some conditions that will take 18-2 months to resolve
Recommended Conditionally – conditions can be resolved in under 24 months
Recommended – this person is ready to go

Portrait Predictor

Rachel and I both took 3 personality tests online to prepare for this.
Today they presented the portrait predictor.  You may have heard of this one called DISC.
If you’ve ever done the Lion, Otter, Golden Retriever, Beaver thang, it’s the same idea.
Four personality types – dominant, influencing, steady, cautious
My personality type?  Definitely an I.

Got a 6 page packet of what that means, but here it is in a nutshell:

Words that describe I: inspiring, persuasive, motivating, enthusiastic, optimistic, collaborative
Strength: Will get everyone on board, build a motivated team
Limitation: May tend to promise more than they can deliver
“Thirives on Opportunity”

My secondary is dominant.

My wife, of course, is pretty much my polar opposite.  She’s a C.

Philosophy of Ministry Presentation

There are 20 candidates taking part in the assessment.  17 couples and 3 single dudes.
We are broken up into 2 teams.
Among those teams we further broke down into 2 groups, so now you have basically 4 groups of 5 candidates each.
In preparation for this weekend, I had to put together some presentations.
One was a philosophy of ministry presentation.
I put together a 2 page document outlining our vision and strategy for the church we want to plant.  I tried to create something we could continue to use in the future.  Maybe I’ll get it up here to share with you sometime soon.
We took turns sharing our individual philosophies and then being asked questions as a couple by the assessors.

For ours we presented our ministries name, why the need for another church in Santa Cruz, our vision in a nutshell, our 4 guiding values, and the strategy of how we were going to get there.
While I was somewhat nervous for this time to come, I ended up actually having a really good time getting to present what we had and really sharing our hearts for ministry as they asked us questions from who we see as heroes of the faith to how we would use art to express God’s beauty in our community.  Good times.

We broke for dinner and afterward went into our second presentation which is a 10 minute mini-sermon along with a 5 minutes sharing of our call to church planting.
3 of the 5 went tonight.
Yup, we are first up tomorrow.  So no more on that now.

Bible Knowledge Evaluation

The night ended with a 50 question multiple choice quiz on the Bible.
The main candidate had to take it and it was optional for the spouses.
Rachel took it.  She’s the bomb.

OK, I feel pretty comfortable with my understanding of God’s story and the content of the scriptures.  But not gonna lie…this seemed like one of the more intimidating portions to me.
Questions from what is the third to last book in the Old Testament to what book would you find the following quote in…
It was good talking to some of the candidates after and knowing we weren’t the only ones to struggle on some of the questions.

So, that’s day 1 in a nutshell.
Overall had a good time getting to know a bunch of people from all over the country who are in the same boat we’re in.
Any questions you have I didn’t address?
Throw em out there in the comments and I’ll try to get to em.

Tomorrow we start with worship at 8am and roll through till 9pm I believe.
It’s definitely the long day.
So I’m off to join my wife in bed.
Hopefully more to share tomorrow night, if I’m not too wiped out!

2 Responses to “Assessment Center – Day 1”