Grace Paek has been training Coffee Break trainers in Korean for twelve years, but this year she led a training that looked a little different. On Oct. 31, the Coffee Break trainers in Korea gathered for a week of training in Incheon, Korea, hosted generously by Inchun Joong-Ang Church. These seven trainers have been training small group leaders in 18 Coffee Break centers across Korea for years now, equipping these leaders in the Bible Discovery method. Through the Bible Discovery method, groups dive into Bible passages and learn for themselves through questions and discussion, rather than through a lecture or teaching.
In past trainings, each trainer gave a presentation, and then Grace and the other trainers gave feedback and encouragement. This year, though, Grace decided to take a different approach. A couple months earlier, she had participated in training with Sam Huizenga and the US Coffee Break trainers. It was an eye-opening experience to watch Sam and the trainers as they prepared to lead upcoming workshops through discovery instead of through lectures. The experience gave Grace a passion to change all of the global Coffee Break workshops to a discovery style.
After all, if the goal was to equip these trainers to teach the Bible Discovery method to new Coffee Break leaders, why not use the discovery method in the training itself? In the spirit of the discovery method, Grace proposed the idea to the Korean trainers and turned the question over to them: how could the discovery method be used in a workshop?
The question sparked a week of discussion and sharing as the trainers talked about how they themselves could use the discovery method to train new group leaders. They split into groups focused on small groups, Bible discovery, and evangelism, talking about examples and practices in each area. Earlier in the year, Grace had done a similar training with Korean trainers in the US, so they went over the training material produced by that group and made adjustments for their own context in Korea. Together, they created a presentation that they can now use to train new leaders, and they’re even working on a book together.
Grace tells how she felt that God’s wisdom shaping the training. For the trainers, the shift in style felt like it came at just the right time. They had been equipping leaders in the Bible discovery style without fully knowing why, but through the training, they experienced how their own discovery and learning was so meaningful and productive. Now, they can fully apply this method as they go back to their regions and raise up new small group leaders.
Please join us in prayer for these trainers as they continue to train leaders, and pray also that their local communities will grow and support each other. The seven trainers stay in touch with Grace through a group chat room, where Grace encourages them and posts daily Scripture passages. They share prayer requests, ideas, and questions with each other; learning and working as a community. Praise God for how he is working in Korea through these trainers, through the leadership of Shinsil Park (Director of Coffee Break in Korea), and through the directors and small group leaders at each of the 18 Coffee Break Centers across the country.