How Can an Emerging Leader Find a Seasoned Leader to Mentor and Train Them?
Over the last several years I have been able to sit with many leaders who are making a worldwide Kingdom impact. They are leaders from different domains of society making a real impact and influence in the world around them. Whenever I am with these people, I always position myself as a student and try to receive and learn whatever I can. During my time with these different leaders, I observed one recurring theme: they all had people that deeply invested into them.
It was like a common denominator that kept resurfacing when I was talking with these Kingdom shakers. These leaders had other leaders pour into them in their formative years of development. This is when I realized, most people who are making a Kingdom impact have had someone invest and pour into his or her life.
I even look at my life and there are key people in different seasons of my life who have poured into me. God has used these mentors and spiritual leaders to permanently change the trajectory of my life.
So the question you have to ask yourself is, “Do I have leaders who speak into my life?” If the answer is no or if you are looking for someone to invest into you, this post is for you. I hope that this post will help you find a mentor(s) that will be able to speak into your life in order for you to become all that God has called you to be.
Leaders can identify hunger. When a leader sees hunger and a fire in someone’s eye they are drawn to that person. You may not be the most gifted and able person, but if there is a fire in you to grow, a leader will pour into your life. Hunger will make you do things that your peers around you will never do. It will cause you to go the extra mile to do whatever it takes to become all that God has called you to be. This spirit and enthusiasm will catch the eye of a leader who is looking for the next generation to pour into. Are you hungry to grow?
Leaders have a hard time speaking into people who think they know it all. It is hard to mentor defensive and arrogant people who think they have all the answers. The truth of the matter is, you do not know what you are doing and you need help. Having a spirit of humility will enable you to receive the wisdom and experience from those who have gone before you. Humility is absolutely essential if you want to be surrounded by great leaders who will take the time to pour into you. Young leaders have to be careful not to mistake information for wisdom and knowledge for experience. There are many young leaders who have a lot of knowledge but lack experience. If you have humility, God will bring leaders into your life that will impart their experience and wisdom into you. Do not think just because you read a book, got a degree and watched a few YouTube clips you know what you are doing. You need someone to speak into your life!
Having a leader and mentor speak into your life can accelerate your ministry and career years ahead of your peers around you.
Showing honor is absolutely essential if you want someone to pour into your life. Emerging leaders who do not show honor, will be stunted in their growth and impact. Honor is absolutely essential if you want to receive an impartation from leaders who have gone before you. With each generation, things change. The methods, the means and the culture are always changing. Thus, it can be tempting for a young leader to think older leaders are old school and set in their traditional ways. This spirit of arrogance and pride is the beginning of their downfall. You and I are standing upon the shoulders of people who have gone before us. They have a wealth of wisdom earned through their wounds and scars along their journey. Showing them honor will give you access to the treasures of life that they have discovered along their journey. Honor is the key ingredient that will enable a seasoned leader to speak into your life.
Follow Them Around
I have learned that people who are making a Kingdom impact are always on the move. They are intentional people with hyper focus. They are intentional in building God’s Kingdom and focused on whatever it takes to accomplish it. Thus, if you ask for their time, it can come off as a burden to them. Rather than asking to meet with them, follow them in what they are already doing. If there is something about them that challenges and draws you to them, ask if you can just sit in and watch what they do. Discipleship is caught not taught. Even the way Jesus discipled and mentored the 12, was by telling them to follow him. Jesus understood that the greatest form of leadership training was to bring them into His life rather than teaching them about His life. Is there someone that inspires you? Try to schedule yourself into what he or she is already doing rather than asking them to sit down and talk with you. If you are able to follow them, you will eventually be able to sit with them.
I have have couple of mentors and leaders in my life who have deeply invested into me. Their time and mentorship has changed the trajectory of my life. I believe one of the reasons why God has blessed me with such great leaders is because I have tried my best to model what I shared above.
A couple of months ago, I had lunch with one of my personal heros. I have been watching him from afar through his messages and podcasts for years. I have read his books and have been tremendously blessed by his life and ministry. At the end of our conversation he said to me, "I want you to follow me. Come to my events and be present whenever you can. If you follow me, you will become family." I was so shocked by what he said. First by his humility and openness to welcome a stranger like me, but also by what he said, "If you follow me, you will become family." That's when it clicked, he as giving me insight into how he trains young leaders. If young leaders are hungry and humble enough to follow great leaders, they will catch something!
I pray that God will open doors for you to sit at tables heros of faith. God has great plans for you and will send people to speak into your life!