November 23, 2021
How to focus on online classes? “I-Google mo lang ‘yan!”
How to be productive during the quarantine? “I-Google mo lang ‘yan!”
How to move on from a break up? “I-Google mo lang ‘yan!”
In a time when literally everything can be found on Google, is it even worth our time and effort to intentionally look for people who can mentor us in the different facets of our lives?
The thing about Google is that we can never have a relationship with him (her? it?). We can ask all the questions we have but at the end of the day, we only get answers based on search engine algorithms which most likely will only give us the answers we want to hear. And just like how routinary tasks often make us feel like life is boring and gives us that feeling of being stuck, hearing only things that are similar to our own thoughts over and over again will probably slow down our progress, or worse, get us nowhere.
Now, ask yourself, “Do I want to be in a place where I’m learning, growing, and thriving?” If your answer is yes, then we hope you see the worth in investing your precious time and energy into walking with a mentor who will help you reach that place of growth.
Full disclosure: the person talking to you through this article is a certified introvert who grew up in a home where everyone is “a man of few words.” Talking to people and sharing details of my life with someone easily tires me. I would grab any opportunity to stay away from people who would constantly ask me about how my day went or how I’m feeling about a certain thing. But then, I realized that my constant engagement in conversations—which would often start with a simple “Kumusta ka?” and “Ano’ng ibig mong sabihin sa okay ka lang?”—helped me a lot in understanding where I really am in life, where I was headed, and how I would get there.
This reminds me of Paul and Timothy’s relationship. A huge part of Timothy’s effectiveness in ministering to the church in Ephesus is because he had Paul—a mentor who loved and cared for him like a father, one who always thought about how he was doing, a person who partnered with him by equipping him for the work of ministry and empowering him for success. I mean who wouldn’t want a Paul in life, right?
However, let’s not forget about Timothy’s attitude as Paul’s mentee. Though we cannot read any accounts from Timothy’s own words in the New Testament, we can still clearly see how Timothy responded to Paul’s mentorship.
What was Timothy’s posture when he was being mentored by Paul?
If we follow their journey, we see that Timothy committed to being mentored. There is no account that Timothy actually spoke or a record of his point of view, but we know that he spent so much time with Paul. He was willing to be mentored by Paul because he always showed up and stayed with him. This idea was even more strengthened when Paul decided to address his last letters to him as someone who would continue what God has started through their ministry.
This makes us realize that for us to reap the benefits for mentorship, we have to commit to receive from our leaders. The question for us now is: How committed are we in being mentored by our leaders?
Timothy was watching Paul’s example and listening to his instructions closely. In his second letter to the Corinthian church, Paul defended his apostleship not by his eloquence or by the depth of his knowledge of the Law but by the trials, persecutions, and hardships that exposed his lack and weakness which highlighted the grace of God in his life. This is the example that Paul was showing to Timothy: a life lived for the glory and grace of the Lord Jesus Christ. This was the kind of leader that Timothy was exposed to: a leader who was sold out in his calling from God.
Nowadays, we are exposed to different personalities online that we deem worthy of emulating and we have to be careful whose life we are watching and whose content or “teachings” we are subscribing to.
We must eagerly desire to be at the place where God wants us to be and to be the people He called us to be. Coaching will indeed require a lot of time, effort, and resources, but it must be woven and knitted by our desire to grow and become better in whatever endeavors we may have in life because if it isn’t, we will perceive coaching as just another technique or tool to grow our skills but not grow our heart and character.
As leaders who want to grow and improve in what we do, may we not miss out that though the people around us will greatly benefit from our skills and talents, they are moved by our character.
I believe that we will all be given the wonderful opportunity to be a Paul to someone, but my prayer is that we will never outgrow being a Timothy who is always open to being taught, especially as we expect God to bring us to different places that will require us to learn and grow anew.