July 2. 2 Kings 1 - 4
Meaning in Mentorship
I have found mentorship to be one of the most valuable, yet underrated, relationships in my life and in our culture. We are consistently taught to be individualistic, self-reliant, and self-motivated. A true mentoring relationship is not easy and requires something of you. Four things I have observed in a genuine mentoring relationship are humility, honesty, honor and hours. Without humbling yourself, being honest and transparent, showing honor, respect, and dedication, and putting in the hours by spending time with one another, I don't believe actual mentorship can take place.
I have had seasons in my life where mentorship was present and seasons, many seasons, where it was not. Without a doubt in my mind, I can say I have been healthiest spiritually, mentally, and emotionally, when I was actively engaging in a relationship that challenged, encouraged, and instructed. Don't get me wrong, good ole' fashioned friendship is absolutely necessary as well, and there is much to be gained in a community of peers. However, when I submit myself to the direction and insight of someone older, wiser, and smarter than me (which isn't hard to find by the way…lol), I grow as a man, husband, father, and life-learner.
In 2 Kings 2, we see an example of the power and impact a mentoring relationship can have.
“1 When the Lord was about to take Elijah up to heaven in a whirlwind, Elijah and Elisha were traveling from Gilgal. 2 And Elijah said to Elisha, “Stay here, for the Lord has told me to go to Bethel.” But Elisha replied, “As surely as the Lord lives and you yourself live, I will never leave you!” So they went down together to Bethel.”
Elisha was undoubtedly dedicated to his mentor. In fact, 2 more times Elijah tries to tell Elisha to stay and he replies the same all three times: “As surely as the Lord lives and you yourself live, I will never leave you!” This makes me ask myself, and I encourage you to ask the same, ‘Do I have this same kind of dedication to a mentor in my life?’ If not, I pray for a mentor worth following. If so, I pray I will fully take advantage of this God-given opportunity.
Let us together be reminded of the importance, benefits, and necessity of mentorship. And together let us look for opportunities to mentor and be mentored by those further along than we.