Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Mentoring: The Jesus Way

Some universities select students whom they feel show great promise of future success
Some politicians choose a cause, not based on conviction, but which they believe will bring them the success in power acquisition they desire.

Similarly there are individuals who choose mentees based on the perceived prospect for future success.
There is a slight distressing principle that appears to tie all the above instances together – the individuals or causes to which these subjects attach themselves would have likely succeeded without them anyway.  Very likely therefore many a university, politician, or mentor is overrated; possibly freeloading off the inherent success associated with the individuals or situations they affiliate themselves with.
It is conventional wisdom that anyone who makes an investment usually seeks to ensure maximum return on that investment (ROI).  Doing otherwise is foolhardy. It takes a certain daring; being a cut above the rest to invest in something or someone conventional wisdom wouldn’t endorse.  Besides, you’re paid to produce results, not mentor.  If an individual is not producing then get someone who will.  That’s the ease of conventional wisdom.

Northern Caribbean University does not always follow conventional wisdom in treating with its student selection process.  Many graduates there are who could give moving testimonies of the impact NCU (WIC) had on their lives at critical crossroads moments; something they could hardly find elsewhere.
But far better than NCU does is what Jesus did… does.  Many a potent lesson He would often share in the company of one – as opposed to focusing on large crowds (like He did on the Mount of Olives).  There was also that conversation with the rich young ruler, who being too attached to his wealth was pained that Jesus would even suggest that he should part with his riches.  In articulating the seductive power of money in barring one from the kingdom He gave the assurance that we need not limit God to the narrow boundaries of our impossibilities.  He also spoke to Nicodemus by night and shared the divine imperative for all to be born again.  Then there was the woman of Samaria whom He met at the well.  He impacted her life so significantly that she brought out an entire city to see Him.  Do you recall the woman who was caught in the act of adultery?  Firstly, He warded off the self-righteous attacks of the holier-than-thou priests and prelates who would in an instant savagely send her to wretched grave.  And when the predators had left, and only silence stood in their midst, Jesus whispered, with utmost love, tenderness and care, “neither do I condemn thee” – a message that has reverberated through every succeeding generation.

The question and challenge to each manager/supervisor is: are you a leader who is prone to echo the virtues of Jesus?