Jim led a group for several years and did a good job. It was a strong group that met the needs of the members. Yet, he never seemed to be able to find an apprentice to mentor. So the group did not multiply. Then Jim had a stroke. He was physically unable to lead his group anymore. Since there was no one mentored to take his place, his group soon died. Looking back, Jim did nearly everything right, except mentor an apprentice.
Rod led a group for several years and did a good job. It was a strong group that met the needs of the members. And Rod mentored an apprentice named Scott. When Rod moved on to plant new groups, Scott took over. The group continued to grow. Over the years, Scott mentored apprentices like Mike, Mark, Dave, Dale, and Jamal. Eventually they led their own groups. Many of their apprentices became leaders. Mike and Jamal went on to plant new churches. Rod and Scott made mentoring a priority and multiplied the group several times. Highly effective small group leaders make a habit of mentoring apprentices.
1. Mentoring is cooperating with God in raising up an apprentice to become a highly effective small group leader.
This may sound overwhelming but raising up spiritual reproducers is the heart of God. All you have to do is cooperate with Him in the process.
2. Mentoring is following the example of Jesus and Paul.
A study of the gospels reveals that mentoring was the method of Jesus. The goal of the Christian life is to be like Jesus. In no way is a Christian more like Jesus then when they are making disciples and raising up leaders. Before Jesus told his disciples to make disciples, He did it Himself. Men were His method. Jesus spent his ministry life mentoring future leaders.
Mentoring was Paul's ...