This post is a part of the Dancing Jesus: Mentoring in the Church blog series that will be ongoing through the month of September. You can read about the series and view the schedule here. You can subscribe to all of the posts here.
When Tyler approached me to contribute to his Mentoring series, I initially was not going to participate. I have never had a mentor. Then I thought about it for a while and realized that, I have been mentored all my life. Just not by one person.
According to Wikipedia, “a mentoring relationship refers to a personal developmental relationship in which a more experienced or more knowledgeable person helps a less experienced or less knowledgeable person”.
Accepting this definition, I have been mentored by wonderful people all my life. But I contend that I have never had a mentor, in the traditional sense. I have no Yoda or Mr. Miyagi. But I have had so many pour into my life over the years.
I have always seen the mentoring process as an ongoing relationship with one person. And, that is one of its forms. So, I have to ask myself. Because I have always looked at mentoring being a long process with a single mentor, have I limited myself to being a mentor to others? I would have to say yes. In some ways, I have not accounted for my own ability to pour into others. I am too busy. I can’t spend focused time with one person. I don’t have the knowledge or wisdom to lead in an ongoing fashion. These are all things I have told myself.
And yet, I have been poured into, faithfully. So, in return I need to pour into others, faithfully. That 5 minutes in a hallway with a friend. Those few spare moments when someone sees you in a parking lot. That time of prayer after a meeting. Around the dinner table with family. During commercials watching football with my kids. All opportunities to pour into others.
So, mentoring has become much more than something unattainable or out of reach for me. Its become a necessity.
Brent Hodge is the worship pastor at Table Rock Fellowship in Medford, Oregon. He is an avid social media user but the best place to catch him is on Twitter @inworship.