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prov·o·ca·tion - something that provokes, arouses, or stimulates. pant - to long eagerly; yearn. a collection of thoughts intended to provoke and inspire. these posts are hoping to encourage people to think, especially Christians, and pant even harder for the waterbrooks of the Lord. If you are not a believer in Christ Jesus, I welcome your perspective and encourage your investigation on these matters.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Finally, It's Happened to Me- Right in Front of My Face, and I Just Cannot Hide It

Alright, so I just wanted to have the longest title I've ever written. So what? No really, there's a reason for bringing back that retro hip-hop song today. For the past three days, I have been really depressed and down, largely because the majority of my time has been spent reading the theology of Process Theists and Open Theists. Trust me, if you spend any time reading these guys, you need to go back to the Bible to get a biblical portrait of God and the Christian life. But that's not the reason I am writing this post! Several months ago, Tim Challies wrote a post called "A Desperate Jealousy" in which he shares his passion to be mentored. He writes,

"I am desperate for a mentor. I am absolutely desperate to have someone who will invest in me. I am desperate to find a person, or have a person find me, who will play Paul to this Timothy."

I believe that it is the sincere desire, though oft unexpressed, of many a young Christian or minister to be mentored. Far too often communal spiritual growth is relegated to an arbitrary time frame of six weeks, mediated by third-party programs, and structured by projects, goals, and impersonal exercises. This, I presume, is to be the modern-day replacement for a Paul-Timothy relationship where the context of real life issues are fleshed out and life is lived together. The majority of us have never had the privilege of being mentored as Josh Harris has with C.J. Mahaney or been invested in as Justin Taylor with John Piper. I dare say that most, if not the overwhelming majority, have not been "fathered" or "mothered" in the faith. This, I must say, is a deep and abiding desire of mine - that is, to father others in the faith and be mentored in the process. When I first came to Southern Seminary, I looked through the seminary faculty and began praying through the professors in hopes that I might be mentored by one of these men. Then I considered men I have met through my local church. For almost two years in Louisville, I have patiently waiting for the Lord to answer my prayer and longed to be taught and mentored. For the past three weeks, God has shown me that he has answered that prayer. I write this post this morning after having spent two hours of great fellowship with the man mentoring me, and I cannot tell you what exuberant joy I have to know that someone actually wants to invest himself in me! I have so little to offer and so much to learn! In gracious providence, the Lord has ordered our steps and ordained such an arrangement over recent months that cannot be explained other than through the purposeful working of God who is attentive to the cries of His children. I believe He has much he wants to do through this, and I am so grateful to be a part of this relationship. I have never really been mentored before, so this is all new to me, and please excuse my excitement and adolescence as I get a little giddy because of the goodness of God. Although this friendship and mentoring relationship is premature and relatively new, I have already benefited greatly from it and consider this to be as much or more meaningful than any academic exercise or classroom lecture I can receive from the finest professors. Don't get me wrong. I love seminary, especially Southern Seminary. But what I love more is men who are willing to put their lives before you and call you upward through their example, integrity, and authenticity. As Paul said, "Follow me as I follow Christ," such a man will be imminently and thoroughly involved in the affairs of your life so as to see Christ formed in you. To this end, I desire to be like Christ. To this means of mentoring, I am most appreciative and joyous, knowing that through this relationship, I will sit at the feet of one I admire and trace his steps of godliness as I travel Calvary's road. O that I may learn the way of the Cross! Lead me, Lord, and let me learn with a humble heart from those whom you so providentially placed in my life!


Blogger terri said...

are you there?

4/06/2006 05:27:00 PM

Blogger terri said...

Timmy, I understand your sentiments and angst over the lack of a mentoring relationship in your life, and am SO thrilled for you to have found the answer to many prayers in someone from our church! God has also provided for many of my prayers about the same thing through the wonderful people there, for which I am so grateful. I have been, and will continue to be praying for GOd to instill a divine burden upon some godly woman's heart to be a mentor/counselor to Dusti as well, and for the discernment Dusti needs to pursue someone from whom she could really benefit and learn spiritually. We all need that, and it makes such a huge difference. I need to be praying more for someone I, myself, can mentor...I have not been faithful in that area like I should be. Hope to get together with both of you after I get home (Saturday night, late). See you at church Sunday!...p.s. disregard the first comment...i couldn't remember my exact user name:)

4/06/2006 05:29:00 PM

Blogger Timmy said...

I am not sure I know what you are asking. Could you clarify your question for me? Thanks Terri! Glad to see you checking in!

4/06/2006 05:30:00 PM

Blogger Timmy said...

Sorry about that last comment. I posted it before I realized you had made the second one!

Amazingly enough, the person mentoring me works at UPS as well and is a great man of God. Actually, our first conversation was about the continuity/discontinuity of the testaments and the relationship of the Mosaic Law to the writings of Paul. Never did I expect that lead to a mentoring relationship? Isn't God's plan fascinating?

Yes, please continue to pray for Dusti's request. She also earnestly desires to be mentored. We both come as a learner. Far too often, I will speak for myself here, that we approach life as a teacher. I am first and foremost a disciple - a follower, a learner, a student. Regardless of where God takes me in life or whatever positions I may hold, it is my desire to always consider myself as such, lest I think more of myself than I ought.

Let us grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and thatthe "sharing of your faith may become effective for the full knowledge of every good thing that is in us for the sake of Christ" (Philemon 6).

4/06/2006 05:38:00 PM


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