In the NFL, this is often seen when a team drafts a young quarterback (currently seen in Cleveland with Colt McCoy and Jake Delhomme) then brings in a veteran to teach him how the game is played at that level. It requires a sense of team-first, and a heart that is pretty selfless. It is an investment that requires sacrifice, time, and concern for the welfare of another. On a very different level, when pastoring, I have used golf as an opportunity to mentor young men in the things of Christ. You can get a lot of ground covered in 4 hours on a golf course—and sometimes, that is specifically what it takes. Time.
The Bible calls us to a mentoring ministry, because it is what insures (humanly) that the work of Christ will go on for another generation. Paul was tremendously committed to mentoring, as evidenced by the entourage of young followers of Christ that he invested himself into, including Titus, Silas, Luke, and many more. To one of his young trainees, Paul described his strategy for mentoring this way:
- And the things that you have heard from me among many witnesses, commit these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also. (2 Timothy 2:2).
Here, the mentoring ministry is seen in a multi-generational format, with no less than four generations in view: Paul, Timothy, those he teaches, those they will teach. Why is this important? Because, in spite of the protests of some major athletes, we all need role models and examples. We all need teachers and coaches. We all nee help and accountability. Mentoring is one of the greatest privileges we have, because it gives us a chance to invest for Christ into the lives of others, that we might see Christ honored for generations to come. And that is a noble goal.
Join us tomorrow on Sports Spectrum radio as we take a further look at the need for mentors to help others grow in Christ.
Bill Crowder, Sport Spectrum Chaplain