This episode comes from a talk I gave at Slipper Rock Universities’s CRU ministry. It’s about finding and cultivating mentor relationships in your life. I believe that finding and developing relationships with mentors is one of the most important things we can do to help us grow to our full potential. I would not be where I am or who I am if it weren’t for the mentors in my life. My prayer is that you’ll listen to this message and start pursuing mentorship in your life. If you do, I believe God will bring people into your life that will change your life forever. As Craig Groeschel said, “I believe that you may be one relationship away from changing the course of your destiny.” The notes from the talk are below. Enjoy the talk!
15 For even if you had ten thousand others to teach you about Christ, you have only one spiritual father. For I became your father in Christ Jesus when I preached the Good News to you. I Corinthians 4:15
“Mentors our age can teach you principles, but mentors down the road can teach you perspective.” -Gerald Brooks
Spiritual Fathers/Mothers will:
- Be much further down the road than you are in areas that you want to grow in
- Have Godly character
- Be someone who you look up to and would like to be like
- Be someone who can tell you no
- Someone that can tell you your blind spots
- Someone to encourage you
Be more concerned about who they are and their hearts than you are their accomplishments.
1.) PAY THE PRICE to BE AROUND OLD LEADERS!
1.) Find them – Put yourself in a lot of places!
2.) Ask for a meeting
3.) Come Prepared for the Meeting – Send them questions ahead of time,
4.) Engage During your Meeting – Take notes, ask questions, be early, keep the meeting on time
5.) Evaluate Your Meeting – What action steps should you take? Do you want to meet with them again? Etc.
6.) Follow-up with them with a thank you!
7.) Do what They Told You – Before you ask for another meeting, do what you discussed in your first
8.) Ask for another meeting – Send them a note saying: This is what I learned, this is what I did, can we meet again?
Three Phases of a Mentor Relationship
Phase One: Parenthood – “my true son in the faith.” (1 Timothy 1:2)
You need mothering and fathering in order to reach maturity. It does not have to come from biological parents….and often doesn’t. Find it! -Henry Cloud
The Key Attribute in this Phase: Faithfulness & Humility
When you find your Paul, be faithful to them! Do everything you can to serve them in this season!
“5 In the same way, you who are younger must accept the authority of the elders. And all of you, dress yourselves in humility as you relate to one another, for “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” 6 So humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and at the right time he will lift you up in honor.” -I Peter 5:5-6
Every leader needs to spend a good portion of their time making someone else look good!
Phase Two: The Student Phase
10 But you, Timothy, certainly know what I teach, and how I live, and what my purpose in life is. You know my faith, my patience, my love, and my endurance. 11 You know how much persecution and suffering I have endured. 2 Timothy 3:10
In this season, you may be disappointed because you realize your mentor is human! You may want to leave, but God wants you to stay. You may think you’re ready, but you’re not!
John 6:66-69 – 66 At this point many of his disciples turned away and deserted him. 67 Then Jesus turned to the Twelve and asked, “Are you also going to leave?”68 Simon Peter replied, “Lord, to whom would we go? You have the words that give eternal life. 69 We believe, and we know you are the Holy One of God.
**If disciples left Jesus because they were disappointed, you’re certainly going to be tempted to leave as well… Don’t!
Be Like Timothy
Philippians 2:19-23: 19 If the Lord Jesus is willing, I hope to send Timothy to you soon for a visit. Then he can cheer me up by telling me how you are getting along. 20 I have no one else like Timothy, who genuinely cares about your welfare. 21 All the others care only for themselves and not for what matters to Jesus Christ. 22 But you know how Timothy has proved himself. Like a son with his father, he has served with me in preaching the Good News. 23 I hope to send him to you just as soon as I find out what is going to happen to me here.
Phase Three: Partnering
Romans 16:12 – “Timothy, my fellow worker, sends you his greetings.”
In this phase, God releases you to do ministry WITH your mentor. How will you know you’re entering this phase?
Your Mentor Blesses What You’re Doing:
Matthew 18:18-20 18 J
esus came and told his disciples, “I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth. 19 Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations,[a
] baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. 20 Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
Others will Confirm that You Were Trained by Your Father:
Acts 4:13 – When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus.
Phase 4: Pay it Forward Phase
Remember your leaders who taught you the word of God. Think of all the good that has come from their lives, and follow the example of their faith. -Hebrews 13:7
Timothy 2:2, “You have heard me teach things that have been confirmed by many reliable witnesses. Now teach these truths to other trustworthy people who will be able to pass them on to others.” (NLT)
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