I’ve been learning some hard lessons these two weeks, some of which have been quite humbling and uncomfortable. I’m crawling through each day, feeling like curling up into a ball and hiding in a hole a lot of times. I feel a bit lost and alone. I feel overambitious and inadequate. But God corrects with a firm, loving and gentle hand, and those He loves, He disciplines. Despite all I am feeling I can stand on His word: that He who began a good work in me will bring it to completion. That although I am pressed I will NOT be crushed. I will NOT be abandoned. I can find STRENGTH in Him. I’m learning, and relearning, and having to decide each day whether I’m going to escape: hide under my blanket, binge on food and watch TV, or I’m going to wear the Armour of God in Ephesians 6 and be a Christian. And I’m feeling like: man this is tougher than I thought it would be! Haha.
Anyway, to finish off what I started a while ago…a few thoughts on mentoring:
4. You Are Not Superior. You Can Learn from Your Mentees.
We can learn from everyone’s successes and failures, strengths and weaknesses. I’m beginning to see how easy it is for me in my excitement to begin viewing myself as superior. Wanting to be superior. But the mystery of the Kingdom of God is that whoever wants to be great must be the least…a humility that I hope one day I will capture and embody.
5. You Will Not Succeed In Teaching What You Have Not Learnt.
Sometimes I find myself talking about things, only to discover much later on that Damn I actually haven’t got this right in my life. I don’t know about you but I can end up feeling quite vulnerable and ashamed. I think a good response is to come back to God and say sorry as soon as He reveals your hypocrisy, to accept His forgiveness and embrace His love, and then I find that when I learn the lesson a little better I end up teaching it better too. When I see God’s truth change my life, even in small ways, then I KNOW I can teach it with conviction. If not, sometimes it’s just dry theory. So I really love sharing and teaching from what I truly have learnt.
Another question I wonder about is: how do I mentor when life feels like a struggle? I mean, how do you not ‘put on a mask’? How can you draw your boundaries while still being honest and real and relatable? I’ve learnt there is an art in protecting what is personal, and in not undermining your own credibility and even reputation. But how do you prevent pretence from creeping in?
Getting a right humility is hard, I find. It takes time, it takes a heart of surrender, and a willingness to be open with God and others.