MENTORING: WHAT, WHY AND HOW

WHY WE MENTOR?

We believe that disciple-making is at the core of the Great Commission Jesus gave to us, hence a core value of who we are as Hope Church. One way we do this is through personal mentorship.

In response to Jesus’s love demonstrated to us on the cross and His example of living in obedience to God, we want to share His good news and to develop and multiply fully devoted disciples of Jesus!

Disciples who live Christ-like and Kingdom-focussed lifestyles. Disciples who are passionate about God, people and the Great Commission. Disciples who are zealous, who live holy lives, are full of faith, and seek excellence in their lives and ministry. Disciples who will in turn make more disciples. We encourage every member to be this kind of disciple.

In our journey of growing to know God, to be more like Him, and learning to live in His ways, we all need others who have travelled further to teach, demonstrate and walk alongside us. This is why we do mentoring.

[Matt 28:18-20, Romans 8:29, 1 Corinthians 11:1, Hebrews 13:17]

WHAT IS DISCIPLESHIP?

Discipleship is the journey we are all on to becoming fully devoted disciples (followers) of Jesus. A growing disciple of Jesus would naturally multiply by making more disciples.

WHAT IS DISCIPLE-MAKING?

Disciple-making is when we seek to intentionally help others in their spiritual growth and to multiply disciples.

Our heart is that every person who belongs to our church is being discipled. As a church we seek to do this intentionally through a variety of avenues. Apart from mentoring, some of the main ways include through our sermons, conferences, life groups communities, bible discussions, and through serving opportunities with our ministry teams. We also have Next Steps Academy and resources available to everyone.

WHAT IS MENTORING?

Mentoring is a personal relationship between a disciple-maker and disciple (mentor and mentee) we facilitate as a church to encourage individuals in their spiritual growth and discipleship journey. Discipleship and disciple-making are broader than mentoring. However, we believe the personal aspect of mentoring is crucial to effectively make disciples.

A mentoring relationship exists for a season of time. Some may be for a year, while others might continue for many years.

Mentoring sessions are times mentors and mentees meet up in person (or over video calls) at an agreed regularity, with an agreed purpose of growing to understand and live out God’s Word in our lives by His grace and the Holy Spirit’s leading. These sessions are intentional and purposeful for the mentee’s spiritual growth in Christ.

Mentoring is more than pastoral care.
Mentoring involves pastoral care, however it is more than pastoral care. As a church, we want to care for every person in our midst, as Jesus does. We seek to do that through our life group communities where relationships are fostered and we care for one another as family.
While there should always be genuine care in our relationships, mentoring relationships are particularly formed based on a desire to grow in our knowledge, and practical application of our faith. It’s centered around Jesus and based on God’s truth from the bible.

Mentoring relationships are not limited to mentoring sessions.
While mentoring sessions are a key part of effective mentoring, there are other aspects of mentoring that make an effective mentor-mentee relationship. There are different dynamics in every mentor-mentee relationship.

Jesus modelled to us how to make disciples through personal relationships, which is why we believe relationships are an important part of mentoring. We want to imitate Him in how we make-disciples. It involves sharing life, being vulnerable, forgiving and encouraging one another, speaking truth, correcting and sharpening each other, laughing and crying, learning and maturing together.

Mentoring is not a substitute for our relationship with God.
Our mentoring relationships must be in submission to firstly our relationship with God as our Great Shepherd. God is incredibly relational with us, and our relationship with Him should be priority above all else. A mentor is no substitute for a relationship with Jesus. Mentoring should be characterised by our 10 core values.

HOW CAN I RECEIVE MENTORING?

If you are keen to have a mentor journey with you, please talk to your leaders about it.
We are committed to seeing all members of our church family grow spiritually and holistically.
To the best of our ability, we offer mentoring to all those who are planted in Hope Church and have committed themselves to building this church family.

We work with our limitations to mentor as many as possible. We are constrained by the number of mentors we have available, their capacities and the suitability to people’s needs. The key considerations we give to work out the priority of whom we can provide mentors to:

  • New believers who are just starting their discipleship journey with God would need guidance with their first steps.
  • Person’s desire and commitment to grow in God, and to mentor others in their growth in God.
  • Mutuality in the mentoring relationship.
  • Members of our church because of their expressed commitment.

Even if we are unable to provide suitable mentors for everyone, our team of leaders and mentors in each life group are there to support everyone in their groups in their discipleship journey. Rest assured we are taking the journey together with our life groups. Most of all, Jesus, our Great Shepherd is always journeying with us. (Psalms 23, Heb 13:20-21)

WHO ARE OUR MENTORS?

Mentors in Hope Church are those who are appointed to be a Mentor by our leadership team.
While every Christ-follower is commissioned to make disciples, and should help others follow Jesus. Mentoring in the church context needs to be done under leadership covering, as it involves teaching God’s Word and accountability in how we live our lives as an example to others, and in the counsel we provide to people. (James 3:1, 1 Cor 11:1)

Can we choose our mentor?
If you are keen to have a particular Hope Church mentor to mentor you, you may feel free to discuss with your leaders. Though please keep in mind we are working with constraints to mentor as many as possible as effectively as possible. We won’t be able to meet every request. We do encourage everyone to stay open and humble for God to use someone else to speak into our lives and guide us in our journey with Him.

HOW CAN WE BECOME MENTORS?

We are always seeking to raise more disciple-makers! Here are some simple tips to get you started:

  • Simply seek to continually grow as a disciple of Jesus! Grow to know Him, be like Him and serve like Him. A disciple naturally becomes a disciple-maker.
  • Commit to be discipled by one of our mentors. We must learn to follow to learn to lead.
  • Join our Next Step Academy courses to equip yourself faithfully.
  • Talk to your leaders about areas for growth and steps towards becoming a mentor.

We have developed Next Steps so everyone can be guided to initiate our next steps and be supported in our discipleship journey.

HOW DO WE APPROACH MENTORING?

We desire to be effective in our approach in making disciples and multiplying disciple makers. After all, it is Jesus’s Great Commission to us!

The table below is a guide to our recommended approaches for effective mentoring sessions depending on our spiritual maturity and life stations. The mentors capacity also needs to be considered when working out the suitable approach.

Mentoring Approaches

Primary Approach Mentoring
Teaching + Discussion
Coaching (Mentor-Driven)
Coaching + Discussion
Focus
  • This involves going through structured lesson plans. I.e. material is provided for teaching and discussion for life application.
  • The Initial priority is to help mentees grow to
  1. Establish a stable relationship with God through spiritual disciplines.
  2. Understand First Steps foundations.
  3. Grow in Christian living.
  • Mentee is guided and supported in self-initiated growth.
  • Mentors will initiate focus of sessions based on agreed goals.
  • Mentees will need to do some ‘homework’ before mentoring sessions.
Sessions Recommended Time: 1-2 hours
Post Secondary Students Effective: weekly
Baseline: 1/1 month
Effective: 1/1 month
Baseline: 1/2 months
Working Adults Effective: 2/1 month
Baseline: 1/1 month
Effective: 1/1 month
Baseline: 1/2 months
Family Effective: 1/1 month
Baseline: 1/2 months
Effective: 1/2 months
Baseline: 1/3 months

Mentors and Mentees Responsibility
For mentoring relationships to thrive, there needs to be mutuality and an intentional investment from both the mentor and mentee.

Mentors Responsibility
  • Teach/coach – Based on focuses above and goals agreed on.
  • Relate – Invest into the relationship.
  • Impartation – Be a life example of a disciple of Jesus.
  • Motivate – Encourage, inspire, challenge to grow and overcome.
Mentees Responsibility
  • Commit to meet regularly as agreed.
  • Relate. Be willing to be accountable and open.
  • Prepare before mentoring sessions as needed.
HOW DO WE KEEP MENTORING EFFECTIVE?
Mentoring Reviews
We encourage mentors to have an annual mentoring relationship review – that is for mentors and mentees to have an honest conversation with the following purpose.

#1 To grow in our effectiveness in disciple-making

  • Give encouragement and helpful feedback

#2 To gain mutuality and agreement in how mentoring will be approached for the next year

  • Discuss growth focus and goals in mentoring
  • Review and adjust our roles, responsibilities and expectations of each other

A relevant leader may join the review to assist mentor and mentee clarify expectations and create a mutual agreement. While most mentoring relationships will continue by default, this review will allow for an evolving arrangement as we grow and life stations change. It will also provide an avenue to bring a mentoring relationship to a close.