Friday, 5 November 2010

Of mentors...and discipleship

I was trawling through my documents, trying to work out which I really really really need to save, coming to the conclusion that most of it needs a permanent visit to the recycling bin, when I came across this. I think I must have written it in response to a blog...

Friends have been vital to my spiritual growth. Even before I became a Christian, I found myself seeking to draw nearer to God through relationships, questioning and discussing to find out more about living a life pleasing to Him. Since then, even though I have a relationship with Jesus, people have played a huge part in shaping my life – ‘God with skin on’.

My mentors have been girls younger than I, girls my age and ‘girls’ 30 or more years older. They have been friends I meet up with occasionally for a coffee; friends who live many miles away, so we rarely meet except over the phone or through emails; friends in my small group who I meet with weekly; my prayer partner. Some are still key in my life at present; others have been key in the past, yet I know that I can still call on them for help when I need it. All have been spiritual mentors. Just yesterday I needed wisdom over an issue I was struggling with. It wasn’t to a pastor or other spiritual ‘leader’ I went, but to a dear friend who has more wisdom in her than I can ever hope to gain. She encourages me in the very best sense: affirms me, names good gifts in me, builds up my confidence while asking probing questions. Where others would ‘tell’ me what to do, she asks gently “Have you thought of…? What about…?” I leave refreshed, invigorated, equipped to walk the Way – and never without us praying for each other. This friend’s encouragement is absolutely key and I bless God for her every day.

Friends. Where would I be without them?

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