As I was reading through 2 Timothy 1 it struck me that Paul told Timothy, ” I constantly remember you in my prayers.” I don’t think he was simply praying, “God bless Timothy”. Paul understood that Timothy was young and facing some pretty intense ministry pressure in Ephesus. So undoubtedly he was praying for God to deepen Timothy’s courage, increase his leadership insights, expand his influence, and whatever else Timothy needed to exercise effective spiritual leadership.
When mentoring a young leader I’m looking for God to use the ink of my experiences to write leadership wisdom on their heart. But it’s not enough to simply instruct, be a role model and share our experience with young leaders. We must pray for them and seek to understand the specifics of what God is doing in their lives. Mentoring is not a two way process…it is a three way process that includes God. It‘s GOD using YOU to shape THEM. Young leaders are susceptible to pride, the lure of power, foolish mistakes and giving up when discouraged. So it’s through prayer that God can give you a deeper understanding into their developmental needs. If I look at mentoring simply as a two way relationship, then I may miss the dynamics of how God wants to use me in their life.
As you meet with the young leaders you are mentoring don’t neglect asking them, “What’s God doing in your life and how can I pray for you?”