Today, many Christians fail to understand the calling on their lives to mentor the people around them. But the Bible teaches that mentoring others is the single greatest way to grow our own faith (Ephesians 4:11-16). If you want to establish a mentor culture in your worship ministry, here are four principles to follow:

Start with one

It’s not to say that you can’t worship mentor more than one person at a time, but just start with one. Jesus didn’t go out and get twelve disciples all at once; He gradually built up his team. This is the approach we have to take for worship mentoring. If you try to worship mentor too many people, each relationship will suffer. Think of it like this: If every person on a worship team just mentored one person in a simple, reproducible way, imagine how much would come of that.

Proverbs 21:5 (NIV) The Plans of the diligent lead to profit as surely as haste leads to poverty.

When you are creating a culture of mentoring on your worship team, understand that slow is fast. The shift is not going to happen overnight; it is going to take time — and that’s okay.

Honestly evaluate in love

Being honest and upfront with someone is one of the most important things you can do as a mentor; but make sure it is done in a loving way. It is hard for anyone to take criticism, but it can be especially hard for a musician to be told that they need to grow in their ability, even when done in love. It really is a two way street. The mentor needs to be honest and loving, and the person being mentored needs to have a teachable attitude.

1 Peter 5:5 (ESV) Likewise, you who are younger, be subject to the elders. Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”

Empower to repeat

The goal of worship mentoring is to help someone to eventually go “full circle” and then to turn around and mentor someone else. In other words, you want the people you mentor to mentor people who make mentors. You could impart all the information in the world to the person you are mentoring, but if you don’t encourage that person to go and help someone else, it might just end there. All you have to do is look at Jesus’s ministry to know what mentoring truly looks like. Jesus mentored people who would in turn go and mentor other people. We want to mentor people who will worship God with their whole lives and help those around them to do the same.

1 Thessalonians 5:11 So encourage each other and build each other up, just as you are already doing.

Pray often

Whether you are looking for someone to worship mentor, are currently worship mentoring, or have handed off the person you were mentoring to go and mentor someone else; there is one thing that you should do throughout the whole process: Pray.

1 John 5:14 (NIV) This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us.

Make sure that you pray for the person you are mentoring often. Pray that God would help you identify the right person to mentor, pray that God would be with the person you are currently mentoring, and pray that God would be with the person as they go and mentor people in their own life.

1 Corinthians 3:6 I (Paul) planted the seed in your hearts, and Apollos watered it, but it was God who made it grow.

Don’t get discouraged if someone is not living up to the potential that you think they should. You as the mentor can only do your part and trust that God will work on the heart of the person you are mentoring. Pray and trust that God will work out the situation according to His will.

Discussion Questions:

  1. Watch the video together or invite someone to summarize the topic.
  2. What is your initial reaction to this video? Do you disagree with any of it? What jumped out at you?
  3. Give some reasons why it would be good to start by mentoring one person? How many people do you think you could effectively mentor at once?
  4. Recall a time when someone evaluated you. Was it easy for you to take the criticism? Why or why not?
  5. Read 1 Peter 5:5. Why does Peter focus on humility? What can that look like in regards to accepting criticism.
  6. Give an example of how not to lovingly tell someone they need to grow in a certain area. Now give an example of how you would lovingly do it.
  7. What does it mean to go Full Circle? Why is it important that every Christian goes full circle in their pursuit of God?
  8. Why is prayer so important in our walk with God? Why is it important to pray for the people we mentor?
  9. Read 1 Corinthians 3:6. Why is it important to know that God is the one who makes the seed grow? What does this mean for the people we mentor?
  10. Write a personal action step based on this conversation.

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