Young people crave mentors, but not the formulaic mentoring styles that worked in the past. To create thriving relationships with next-generation believers, ditch worn-out mentoring models.
Be encouraged. Next generation young adults don’t envision a strict weekly commitment. Nor are they looking for the Bible-answerperson. And a natural rapport must replace artificial matching.
Young adults yearn for a more experienced person to help them apply biblical truth to the challenges they face. They want honest mentors with whom they can process life when the need arises, and people who won’t try to remake them into some preconceived mold. They are looking for a reciprocal relationship, expecting that both people will benefit.
Moses instructed parents to speak of their love for God in everyday moments—sitting together at home, walking from place to place—taking advantage of teachable opportunities when questions naturally arose (Deut. 6:5–8). The same instruction applies to mentoring now: casual and natural. In ancient biblical wisdom we find a mentoring model that works today.
Dr. Sue Edwards is Associate Professor of Educational Ministries and Leadership at DTS and coauthor of Organic Mentoring.
About the Contributors
Dr. Edwards’s heartbeat is to reinforce ministry partnerships between men and women, which strengthen church and parachurch organizations locally and worldwide. She has over forty years of experience in Bible teaching, educational ministries, leading ministry to women, retreat and conference speaking, training teams and teachers, overseeing staff, and writing curriculum. As former minister to women at her local church she experienced healthy men and women partnerships on staff, and her passion is to pass on what she has learned. She is the author of “The Discover Together Series”, currently providing thirteen inductive Bible studies for women (www.discovertogetherseries.com), co-author of five leadership books for women, and co-editor of “Invitation to Educational Ministry, Foundations of Transformative Christian Education.” Dr. Edwards’s research and teaching interests include coaching and instructing women to teach the Bible and organic mentoring. Married to David for forty-six years, she especially enjoys romping with their five grandchildren and their two west highland terriers.