Evidently, God thinks mentors are important because He gave us examples throughout Scripture. Joshua had Moses. Ruth had Naomi. Elisha had Elijah. Paul had Barnabas. Timothy had Paul. Even Jesus had Joseph to teach him the trade of carpentry.
Business New Daily says, “All entrepreneurs need a solid support system of individuals they can turn to for business advice. These supporters can be close friends, family and colleagues, but one of them should fill the role of a knowledgeable, experienced mentor.”
Mentors provide a valuable source of wisdom for any kind of work. They can serve as a sounding board for ideas and offer insight about obscure things, such as the unwritten rules (every business has them) that can only be learned the hard way or from someone who's willing show you the ropes. In this article you’ll find a list of qualities to look for in a mentor, as well as help in finding one.
While a mentor need not be a person of faith, there are some things that only a mentor with spiritual depth can teach you. The Bible offers guidelines for what to look for in a mentor.
Writing to both mentors and mentees, the apostle Peter explained,
“And now, a word to you who are elders in the churches. I, too, am an elder and a witness to the sufferings of Christ. And I, too, will share in his glory when he is revealed to the whole world. As a fellow elder, I appeal to you: Care for the flock that God has entrusted to you. Watch over it willingly, not grudgingly—not for what you will get out of it, but because you are eager to serve God. Don’t lord it over the people assigned to your care, but lead them by your own good example. And when the Great Shepherd appears, you will receive a crown of never-ending glory and honor. In the same way, you younger men must accept the authority of the elders. And all of you, serve each other in humility, for ‘God opposes the proud but favors the humble’” (1 Peter 5:1-5).
Paul instructed Titus,
“Teach the older men to exercise self-control, to be worthy of respect, and to live wisely. They must have sound faith and be filled with love and patience. Similarly, teach the older women to live in a way that honors God. They must not slander others or be heavy drinkers. Instead, they should teach others what is good. These older women must train the younger women to love their husbands and their children, to live wisely and be pure, to work in their homes, to do good, and to be submissive to their husbands. Then they will not bring shame on the word of God. In the same way, encourage the young men to live wisely. And you yourself must be an example to them by doing good works of every kind. Let everything you do reflect the integrity and seriousness of your teaching. Teach the truth so that your teaching can’t be criticized. Then those who oppose us will be ashamed and have nothing bad to say about us” (Titus 2:1-8).
What have mentors taught you?
What characteristics are most important to you in a mentor?