DO YOU HAVE A MENTOR?
Probably some 15+ years ago, after teaching in Kiev Ukraine for a week, I went onto Moscow Russia, to preach at a church pastored by the parents of 2 of the students in College back in Sydney. I met an African brother in the church who was serving on the sound desk, he was in Moscow as a student. We exchanged contact information and have been in regular communication ever since.
He Whatsapped me a few days and included in his message there was this with this question:
I WAS THINKING A FEW DAYS AGO THAT IF I’VE VISITED YOU WHAT WILL BE THE MOST IMPORTANT QUESTION I’LL ASK YOU? i THOUGHT I WOULD ASK YOU SO THAT I CAN SHARE AND LEARN FASTER. I WILL BE 43 IN June, KNOWING WHAT YOU KNOW NOW WHAT WOULD YOU HAVE DONE IF YOU HAD THE OPPORTUNITY TO BE 43? KNOWING WHAT YOU KNOW NOW WOULD YOU HAVE DONE IF YOU HAD THAT OPPORTUNITY AT 43.
I asked him if I could think about it and get back to him. I read and re-read his question, and many things began rolling around in my mind and after considerable thought this was my answer.
I WOULD HAVE ASKED THE LORD IN PRAYER FOR HIM TO GIVE ME A MENTOR/S WHO I COULD TRUST AND SEEK COUNSEL, AND BE ACCOUNTABLE TOO. I HAD THE PRIVILEGE TO DO MANY THINGS BY THE TIME I WAS 43 BUT I WOULD HAVE DONE THEM MUCH BETTER IF I HAD HAD MENTOR/S.
In his response he expressed his appreciation for my response, then (to me) out of the blue said SOME NAMES CAME TO HIM CLEARLY, AND I WOULD LIKE TO ASK IF YOU CAN MENTOR ME.
If you have read my recent blog on MAKING A FAITH DECLARATION, you would know that I am believing the Lord would enlarge three areas of ministry through me, and that included Mentoring. So I shouldn’t have been surprised.
I must say I regret deeply I did not understand the place and importance of having a Mentor, and the whole principle of accountability, we Aussies tend to be one man bands or Lone Rangers, or are aware of the extremes and so (again I have written about) THROWING OUT THE BABY WITH THE DIRTY BATHWATER.
Yet deep down I knew I needed a person I could trust and be in relationship with and for them to be free to speak into my life and give me counsel, and challenge and encourage and tutor me and if needs be discipline me.
We know Elisha had Elijah, Timothy and Titus had Paul, Peter James & John especially were in a close relationship with Jesus. Yet, like Biblical Discipleship it is neither promoted or really encouraged in some parts of the Body of Christ, THIS TO ME IS SO SAD.I could have been saved from some personal disasters and failures, and in the past I could have been more fruitful in the Kingdom of God if I had had a MENTOR.
In the first century Jesus commanded His Disciples to MAKE DISCIPLES, and this command is still in force in the 21st century. In so many places this command has been watered down to a 4-6 week course, where I am convinced, BIBLICAL DISCIPLESHIP IS A DISCIPLE MAKER WALKING WITH THE NEW BELIEVER FOR AS LONG AS IT TAKES UNTIL, FOR THE NEW DISCIPLE, LIVING AS A CHRISTIAN HAS BECOME HIS LIFESTYLE. I am not against Discipleship classes, but there must be a one to one component, and with technology this is not difficult in the 21st century.
This process is often rushed and instead of a transition from Discipling to Mentoring, one has passed the 4-6 week class, and instead of the emphasis being about being, it becomes ALL ABOUT DOING. Biblical Discipleship can take time, often many months, (and in sense should never cease) so we should not rush to the next stage of MENTORING..
MENTORING I feel is all about training and equipping for ministry, and ever Believer is called not just out of sin and be born again of the Holy Spirit, but is called to serve in the Body of Christ. Most Believers are not called to the Eph. 4:11 Ministry (Apostles, Prophets, Evangelists, Pastors& Teachers) so Disciple makers can be very involved in the transition. I would suggest though another Eph. 4:11 ministry needs to be involved in the MENTORING of someone who it is discerned could have this sort of gifting becoming evident in their life.
So, as I am not completely sure of this brother’s foundations I have written to him asking him numerous questions to assess where he is at as far as his walk with the Lord is concerned, I am still to discern if there if there is an Eph.4:11 gifting in his life.
Once again there is nothing new in this blog, yet I believe it highlights a major need and challenge in the Body of Christ. So can I ask you a couple of questions?
- Did someone walk with you in Discipleship until being a Christian had become a lifestyle?
- Do you have A Mentor you are accountable too, and you let speak into your life and counsel and challenge you and help you in your ministry development?
May the Lord help us to build the Church and every new Believer:
ACCORDING TO THE PATTERN OF THE WORD OF GOD.