Mentoring Helps

It’s Bigger Than You Think! Why Mentoring is so Vital

Editor’s note: At the end of this post is a link to one of the radio interviews David Riffel had about his book, Mentoring Warriors.

With the release of my book, Mentoring Warriors, I’ve had the opportunity to be on numerous radio interviews from coast to coast. Whether it’s Orlando or Portland, Detroit, or Iowa, or the Ozarks, the same conversation comes up with the radio hosts; “The need for mentoring is desperate for the next generation of young men entering adulthood.”  Often, I’ll share a general statistic that holds true for most cities.  Take the overall population of the metro area you live in.  For example, Mentoring Warriors is based in Wichita, Kansas, where the metro population is 650,000. About 7.5% of your area are warrior-aged men (18-30 years old). That means there are about 48-50,000 warrior aged men in the Wichita metro area.  General stats show that only 2-4% have a mentor; about 1000-2000 men. The rest do not. 

It all points to what Jesus said.  “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.”Luke 10:2 ESV

The laborers in this case are mentors. 

“But, I haven’t the first clue on how to mentor.” 

Neither did I when I began. Sure, I understood the essence of the Gospel and Jesus’ call in the Great Commission to make disciples, but how does all this involve me?  When I realized that God is writing his story in my life, part of what He’s doing is pouring into my life so that I can pay it forward to others. The life of Christ through me.

2 Timothy 2:2 Man

“Why is it so few men invest in the younger generation?” That question kept coming up in several radio interviews.  “We’ve become too silo in our thinking.”  Let me explain. For generations, all the way back to the Old Testament times, we see examples of older generations investing in the younger ones. It wasn’t always perfect. Mistakes along the way were many. However, the dynamic that worked was younger men seeing the value of learning from older men.

However, since the onset of the Industrial Revolution, society has shifted to a more individualistic, self-focused view. We’ve reverted to a “life is all about me” with little thought of how the next generation is being shaped.  This malady has infected both non-Christians and Christians alike. You see it in the breakdown of father-son relationships. Even in homes where dad and mom are doing their best to raise their kids, a level of passivity has pushed young men to figure life out on their own. “I’d be mortified if I ask my dad about things like girls and sex and all that stuff that is pushing me into manhood.”  So, young men go about life either with a host of secrets they hold tight to their chest, or they find answers on their own amongst their peers who are struggling in the same way.

The shift to a mentoring culture comes when we see God’s heart for investing in the next generation. The classic example in Scripture is Paul’s relationship with Timothy.  Paul was called by God to spread the Gospel to non-Jews. He took young Tim under his wing, doing life together, sharing ministry, and a common relationship with Jesus. As Paul grew older, he saw the need for Timothy to pass the Gospel to the next generation.  “And the things you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses, entrust to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.”  2 Timothy 2:2 ESV

That’s four generations impacted because of Paul’s commitment to mentoring Timothy. 

But, There’s No Guarantee

You’re exactly right. Humanly-speaking there is no guarantee that all the effort of pouring yourself and the Gospel into a young warrior will payoff.  Mentoring is at its core a supernatural work of God that only happens as we choose, by faith to get beyond ourselves and invest in those who are figuring their manhood journey out.  “Not I, but Christ.”  Mentoring isn’t some ego-centric venture. It’s about humbling yourself before God, allowing Him to restore your own brokenness in a way that you become an agent for impacting young warriors for eternity.

Your Story

So, what’s it going to be? Will you live for yourself, or will you allow the Lord to use your story to impact the next generation of warriors for Christ?

Reach out to us at Mentoring Warriors. Let’s start a conversation of ways God can use you to reach warriors for Christ.

Warrior On!

Editor’s note: Below is a link to a radio interview David Riffel had with 88.1 FM KLFC Radio Branson, Missouri. David is interviewed on the Good Morning Ozarks show by Charlie and Keith. Enjoy!

David Riffel is the Founder and Executive Director of Having gone through his warrior years (18-30) essentially without a mentor, God has placed in him a heart for warriors, to come alongside them in various ways as they figure out life. David’s newly released book, Mentoring Warriors: Coming Alongside Young Men 18-30, outlines principles for mentoring and gives advice for warriors in six key areas of life: self-management, life skills, education/career, relationships, faith, and identity.

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