Career With A Purpose 6.0: The Value of Mentoring, Part II

The Value of Mentoring, Part II

Career With A Purpose 6.0


Be sure to read Mary Beshear’s The Value of Mentoring, Part I!

We’ve probably all heard it said that one of the greatest gifts a person can give to someone is the gift of time. No matter how many other assets any of us have, time is the one thing that is a limited resource for each of us. Therefore, sharing our time, attention, and wisdom with someone else is a priceless gift.

In a previous article, we discussed the high value mentoring, especially with today’s mobile society, distracted families, and frequent lack of intimacy in friendships. Yet, while we can all agree to the need for caring role models, it’s easy to think…this is a job for someone wiser or more talented than I am.

However, the truth is: most people just need a listening ear and someone to care as they navigate the ups and downs of life…a person who can believe in them until they learn to believe in themselves. Often, there are simple common-sense things that can be shared during a long walk or a quick breakfast. Without even trying to be wise, mentors unconsciously model valuable principles. The following might be a few examples:

  • The ability to laugh and treat ourselves kindly is of great value.
  • One mistake does not constitute a blemish on someone’s character.
  • We can either feed or starve our energy levels, depending on where we place our focus. The things we read, the programs we watch, the thoughts we think can revive or deplete us.
  • God’s desire to bless us will always exceed our ability to receive His blessings.
  • When our lives lack encouragement, we can learn to build ourselves up with what the Word of God says about us. It’s life-giving.

Many books on the market today have wisdom for the mentor as well as the mentee. Seasoned leaders offer the following tips for those who want to feed into the next generation…or simply encourage those around them.

  • Mentors do not need to feel responsible for anyone’s outcome; a mentor is simply making him or herself available to listen, prompt, and pray.
  • The whole idea of mentoring is to see what God sees in others.
  • However, it’s not about blind encouragement, but rather about prompting to excellence.
  • It’s wise for mentors to dust off their own dreams and take time for personal growth, too. It can’t be all about another person’s goals.
  • Anyone giving out energy needs to keep him or herself mentally sharp and regularly take time for things that restore personal energy. Such things as prayer, exercise, eating well, and getting plenty of sleep are of high value for the mentor.

The next generation is looking for role models to follow. They want seasoned advice and guidance on everything from conflict resolution to healthy relationships to personal boundaries. And they flourish when these things are offered in a nurturing relationship.

Darlene Zschech says, “When your words have caused someone to rise out of the ashes and know that they are loved, appreciated, and have a future worth showing up for-you have made headline news in Heaven.” (The Art of Mentoring, p. 37)