Most men want a mentoring relationship, to either learn from someone with life-long history of Christian growth and maturity, or to share their own experience and wisdom with others. Frankly, this may sound idealistic, but why should we have to learn the hard way, when there is a wealth of experience that can be shared? Mentoring is one way to leverage each other’s learning for the growth of the body of Christ.
Overheard were two Christian men talking over lunch. Listen in on their conversation; it went something like this:
Younger man: We younger guys want to be mentored, but it seems there are no older men who are interested in mentoring us.
Older man: Yes there are, but the younger men seem uninterested.
Younger man: Maybe that’s because someone tried to mentor me once, but after we met a couple of times, we ran out of things to talk about.
Older man: No one ever mentored me or taught me how to do it, so most of us are unsure how to do it or what to talk about.
The BER Mentoring Plan can help you develop meaningful relationships that are spiritually based and resource-rich. This plan has a wealth of resources not just for elders, but for any two men or any small group to use and adapt to help them another grow toward spiritual maturity.
Mentoring relationships can take many forms:
- An older man and younger man
- A more experienced person with a less experienced person
- Two people mutually mentoring each other for accountability and growth
- One person mentoring a small group of two or three people
First watch the above video. Then invite someone to join you in a mentoring relationship.
Think through your wording. For example:
“I’d love to get together with you to hear about what God’s doing in your life.”
“I was wondering if I could meet with you; I’d like to learn about how you have grown spiritually and what I can learn from you.”
“I would like to grow in my spiritual life; would you be willing to meet with me and go through some online material together?”
If the first person you approach doesn’t work out, don’t give up easily. Keep trying with that person or else find someone else.
Have the person you invite come to the page to watch the video and read this explanation.
Meet initially to lay out a plan:
Decide how often, where, and when. For example, you could decide to meet every other Friday lunchtime (break from work) for one hour at a restaurant or coffee shop convenient to you both. Other times that some men find convenient are breakfast before work or Saturday mornings.
Select an initial topic from the BER Effectiveness section of this website.
Each of you watches the selected video on your own each week.
When you meet:
- Begin with prayer, either in the restaurant (if desired) or in the car before going in (if you drive to your meeting). Ask the Lord to guide your time together and help you have good interaction.
- Use the review questions (“Remember It”) and discussion questions (“Discuss It”) that accompany the video to kickstart the conversation.
- These questions are only suggestions. Your discussion may lead to other questions or issues.
- The whole idea is to open up the interaction and share ideas and thoughts.
- Don’t teach, but interact. Share your experiences, successes, and failures.
- Your attitude, if you are the mentor, should be, “Here is my experience; maybe this will be of help to you.”
- In fact, there may be some things the mentor learns from the interaction.
- Both should develop the ability to ask good questions of each other.
- Discuss the application question (“Apply It”) that goes with the video. Again, these are just suggestions. You may have different ideas of how to apply what you learn. Put what you learn into use, and go deeper in your study of the subject.
- If you desire to have an accountability relationship, you may want to use the BER Accountability Questions.
- Finish with prayer based on what you can take away from your time together.
- Don’t forget to leave a good tip! You don’t want the waitress to think you Christians are stingy!
All the above are just suggestions. Adjust and adapt to suit your needs.
Please give us your feedback, so we can know how you are doing with this. Contact us.