Over the past 1 ½ years, I have been traveling across the country and the world sharing the kingdom message of mentoring as intentional discipleship. I have been overjoyed to hear the impact that my first book, Mentor for Life: Finding Purpose through Intentional Discipleship has made and is making in the daily lives of people—including transformation in the ways they live, love God, love others, and minister in their local context.
Me sharing “Mentor for Life” with students in Rwanda this summer, and providing leadership training to women in Nigeria this fall.
I wrote that book out of my own personal mentoring experiences and from the mentoring ministry that I was leading in my local church. It is my hope and prayer that it continues to convict, encourage, and help people prioritize God’s kingdom mission of making disciples of all nations. Most people do not know that at the same time that I was writing the book, I was also compiling material to prepare leaders to mentor well. The result of this work is the “Mentor for Life Leader’s Training Manual.”
Recently, I completed a Part 5 Bible study series with the kind folks at the Discover the Wordbroadcast. We went through the gospels to discuss God’s purpose and plan for intentional discipleship. These recordings are now available and would be a great option for a personal devotional this summer, or to engage a small Bible study group.
Below you will find the series breakdown and highlights:
Part 1 How do we live out Jesus’s Great Commission?
Mentoring as intentional discipleship is for God’s kingdom purposes. Why is discipleship and the use of the mentoring language important?
Scripture: Matthew 28:18-20
Part 2 Is there a difference between Christ-followers and the lost?
Evangelism without discipleship is incomplete; they are two sides of the same coin. Is our current way of thinking about evangelism and discipleship in the right order?
Scripture: John 1:35-51
Part 3 Discipleship: A Matter of both Knowing and Doing
Discipleship requires that we look outside of our own needs to see the spiritual and physical needs of others.
Scripture: John 6:1-14
Part 4 Our Walk of Faith Requires Training
Love God and love people is the basic principle of discipleship. We can learn how to love well, and we can teach others how to love us well. There is a cost involved.
Scripture: Luke 10:25-28
Part 5Mentor for Life (16:00 min)
The 5th Law of the Navy – “On the strength of one link in the cable, dependth the might of the chain, who knows when thou mayest be tested? So live that thou bearest the strain!”
The training of making disciples prepares us for the mission, and the training also prepares us for the test.
Scripture: John 4:31-38
Conclusion: Intentional discipleship or mentorship is an invitation to LINK Up with God in the kingdom work he is already doing in the world.
Mentoring is a trusted partnership where people share wisdom that fosters spiritual growth and leads to transformation, as mentors and mentees grow in their love of Christ, knowledge of self, and love of others.
If we adopt the view that mentoring fosters spiritual growth that compels us to follow Jesus Christ, and that it leads us to surrender to the change needed for spiritual maturity, then we are led to the following conclusion about the relationship between mentoring and discipleship:
God’s kingdom purposes for mentorship and discipleship are one and the same. The words can be used synonymously when any Christian assumes the responsibility of influence in the life of another.
As Christians, when we mentor others, our primary purpose is to make disciples of Christ and to show them how they can make disciples of Christ.
To put it simply, mentoring is intentional discipleship.
When we think about mentoring as intentional discipleship, we come to understand that mentoring is both theological and relational. The relationship aspect of mentoring—specifically the relationships that humans have with each other—is where we will turn our attention today.