“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.” Galatians 5:22-26
Today, I want to talk about how the Holy Spirit plays into the mentor-disciple relationship. I’ll talk a little bit about the confusion that surrounds the Holy Spirit, and really how we should be connecting with him every day, especially within the context of mentoring someone. We need to know how to hear the Holy Spirit, utilize the tools He has given us, and execute on the walk He is calling us to follow.
Growing up I was taught that the Holy Spirit was the giver of life. Connecting that to what we read above in Galatians, He begins to come into focus. Amongst the Father and the Son, the Holy Spirit connects with us in a very personal way. He shows us, not even just every day, but hour by hour, how to live free. Not without trials or problems, but the elements we read about above: love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control…they are the elements we are able to exude when we walk with the Spirit. Being able to walk in these attributes is the key to, not only freedom, but being able to witness to others that He may call you to lead. If that’s not life-giving, I don’t know what is. There is freedom in walking a tougher path. Let me tell you friend, choosing this path can and will be tough, but nothing that cannot be overcome by the feeling and the power of saying yes to the Spirit.
I’m on the younger side, and as such, I see myself more often on the disciple side, rather than the mentor.This series is focusing on a sustained relationship between a mentor and disciple, but I want to make something clear as well – I have seen this many times, the Spirit can jump in at any moment, push you guide someone at any time with the tiniest nudge, of which I believe can be worked into a miracle, with you as the vessel. It is important for you as a mentor to access the potential disciple quickly and accurately. The person the Holy Spirit has you set your sights on may be at any point in their walk. They may be at step 1. They may have never even discussed Christ, they may have had a long walk with HIm, only to be burned and pushed away by others in the church, or anywhere in between.
I remember one time, a few years ago, my wife and I went out to dinner. Waiting on a table, there was an older gentleman, sitting alone and waiting as well. Could tell he was one of the types that will sit and talk to anyone. I’m not much of a small talker, but he sat there and talked my ear off, until our name was called to be seated. After being seated, I noticed he was sitting and eating his dinner alone. Looking at him, he just looked like he needed something to hold on to, something positive. Now most of us have times where we go out of our way to do something nice, and we do and that’s great. But this time just felt different. I saw he was about to finish just as our waitress was bringing our bill. I told her to charge his meal to our bill as well. We paid and started to walk out and he stopped me. He simply said, “I don’t know why you did that, but I really appreciate it, and I’ll be thinking about you.” I just replied that it was nice talking with him before, and I hope he has a nice evening. I can’t tell you why, but I know that the Spirit sat right in my gut, telling me this guy needed someone to reach out. He needed to see compassion. This wasn’t a time where I could sit all night and preach the gospel to this guy. I almost made a comment when he asked me why, pointing to God, etc. But something told me, this wasn’t the time. He wasn’t in my realm to mentor, however, it was on me, in that moment, to give him a glimpse. A glimpse into the possibility that he could open up to people; that he could trust someone.
Now I have two sons, and of course, I will mentor them as they grow up. At 2 and 5, I work daily, laying the groundwork, showing them what a man that walks with the Spirit looks like. I’m never perfect, obviously. The point is, in order for us as kingdom men, to recognize, decide, and execute, when it comes to being a mentor to someone, we have to know the Holy Spirit. We have to know who He is and how He walks with us. Then we have to listen to Him and act in the manner that accomplishes what He is looking for. We can’t be everything to everyone. But when He wants you to step in, you will know it, if you know Him.
Daily Battle Order: What is the Holy Spirit saying to you. Do you know what your relationship with Him is meant to be? These are the first steps to being able to utilize what He is telling you, in order to gain that situational awareness when it comes to disciples. Where are they at in their walk? Can you influence this person, are they in your realm? Spend some time in prayer, ask the Spirit to develop your relationship with Him, and ultimately for the vision to be aware of those around you; so that you may be able to step in, when you are called to.