Why is mentoring such a powerful tool?
With the launch of Brave Strong Girl I've been really pondering the fundamentals of mentoring.
It's easy to get caught up in the form of mentoring: is it training, teaching, coaching or advising? Often the focus is on a path or pattern of development: is it one-on-one, small group, face to face or anonymous?
All of these questions are important to a successful mentoring experience, but what is it about mentoring that makes it so effective? Why do we find mentoring - whether formal or informal - as an integral part of our human experience?
I believe it's because mentoring is fundamentally about hope.
It has a natural stance that looks ahead and prophecies about what could be. It's the opposite of fear, which looks ahead and prophecies destruction. Mentoring looks ahead and declares ability, capacity, fulfillment, transformation, confidence and even eternal purpose.
It is the intersection of two life experiences where one person looks back to extend a hand and say "come on, you can do it". The other person dares to look ahead, stretch out their hand to grasp another and makes a leap of faith.
It is filled with potential and questions of what if? What if I can? What if it matters? What if I change, grow, influence, or impact?
As a person of faith, the what if's go deeper. What if I was born for this? What if it's about more than me? What if I have a purpose or a destiny that matters to me, to God, and to others?
Hope is a key to courage.
The kind of courage that will take you past your weakness and your fear and cause you to become brave and strong.
Hope is a necessity.
It isn't a luxury. Every human heart is shaped with a longing for our eternal purpose to be fulfilled. This life is not just about getting into the doors of heaven. It's about what we do now with what we have and it's eternal impact.
You need mentors because you need hope.
This life tends to wear down hope. It drinks it like afternoon lemonade on a hot summer day. If you let it, life can leave you dry and empty, looking backwards at what happened to you, rather than ahead toward what can be.
This is why the Word of God satisfies the thirst and hunger of the believer. It is a mentoring tool provided by the Chief Mentor (God), given to us by the Chief Servant (Christ) and taught to us by the Chief Teacher (the Holy Spirit).
And it is full of hope.
If you've been without a mentor, then get busy. Open the Word of God and let it lead you. Then find a community that will speak to your future in a brave new way. You can begin right here with us.
Then just leap!
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