Wednesday, May 5, 2010


They replied, "If today you will be a servant to these people and serve them and give them a favorable answer, they will always be your servants."

But Rehoboam rejected the advice the elders gave him and consulted the young men who had grown up with him and were serving him. He asked them, "What is your advice? How should we answer these people who say to me, 'Lighten the yoke your father put on us'?"

The young men who had grown up with him replied, "Tell these people who have said to you, 'Your father put a heavy yoke on us, but make our yoke lighter'-tell them, 'My little finger is thicker than my father's waist. My father laid on you a heavy yoke; I will make it even heavier. My father scourged you with whips; I will scourge you with scorpions.' " - 1 Kings 12: 7-11

Today’s Reading: 1 Kings 12- 13; Luke 22: 1-20

I was talking to my friend Yohance of the other day about women, relationships and the like. One of the things that he said that really struck me was something to this effect.

“I really want to have a grown man dinner or something to talk to older folks about this stuff.”

I feel him on that.

Mentors are really important. Whether it comes to choosing a mate, a path, following your purpose or navigating the pitfalls on the path towards our dreams; there is someone who has already walked in similar footsteps.

I wonder if a lot of the problems that younger folks have with relationships these days are caused by this. There are so many young men and women who grew up without fathers or in broken homes. How would they learn how to treat a woman? How would they learn how to provide for her emotional well-being?

The same goes for women. If we have not grown up with positive examples for these kinds of relationships then where do we learn these lessons?

Unfortunately, too many of us go to our friends.

On the surface this seems all good and nice but the problem is that they don’t know anything either!


Ok so sure you can read books on it and there are plenty out there on the topic. But I also bet that you have some examples in your life of working relationships. They may not be your parents but look at your friends’ parents, teachers you’ve had, people in your church or community groups.

Contrary to common belief these relationships do exist.

So when it comes down to the important decisions in life, make sure that you reach out to the folks who have already walked the path.

They will be more helpful than you think.


  1. Good post. I agree with you here. It's important to have mentors who lead by example and offer advice. Equally important though are those people who can help propel you in the direction of relying on your instinct and really helping you to reflect so that you can trust your own decisions. Instinct...I think it's something that is either highly under developed in young people, or often ignored. Inherently, I think we know when something is bad for us, and it's important to have people in your life who reinforce that. Who can say "here's how I've handled it when I was in that situation," etc., but who will also say "What does your gut tell you? What does that voice inside say?" And, as we know, that voice is always God. He's always nudging us in the right direction -- we just have to fine tune ourselves to be open to what he is telling us :)

  2. That's a great point Molli. Often times when we look to people who in the past were authority figures they tend to try to parent instead of provide thoughtful guidance about how we can best walk our OWN path.

    That is a key distinction... Mentors help us to be the best we can be. They don't tell us to do it exactly how they did it.

    Great point!

  3. Hey Clarence, I really dig this post because it touches a major issue in training the next generation. Growing up, I was fortunate to have parents who did not play.

    Needless to say, I was definitely one of those children who needed lots of extra care. I know for a fact, that if I did not have my mother or someone like her, oh my God. There is just no telling where I would be. I'm very loving, but I can be extremely bold and matter of fact in my beliefs.

    I have had the pleasure of being mentored by several God chosen people. Some were very hard like a coach, and others through distant relationships. Over the years it has helped me tremendously. I was fathered in ministry by a man of God who pushed and pushed me all the time. Really he got on my last nerve. But I'm so greatful to him. He saw such potential in me and refused to let me settle.

    I believe these are the types of people we need in our lives to check on us and love us, and even every now and again, put a foot in your butt...if need be.

    I don't mean violence of course...

    In the book of Titus chapters 1,2 illustrates the task of the elders training up young men and women. It breaks down how necessary it is for the quality of the church (people) in building the youth.

    Blessings man of God

  4. I am very surprised to hear a man say his friends might not know the "best way" when it comes to relationships.

    My grandparents were/are my example. For me they are the best examples of, love, consideration, selfishness, selflessness, toleration, commitment, and happiness. Not perfect. But a good example on how to be a wife to my husband and "things" I can expect from my husband when eventually I am a wife.

    As I heard in a sermon, "if you want to be married for 10 years, talk to people who have been married for over 10 years." And as Molli said, God will give you the help you need, you just have to be open to "listening". Or we can always be scourged "with scorpian". Astrologically this hurts, imagine the real thing! :-) - Ale

  5. Sometimes, friends become the only option when we cant look to our parents or other family members... but I dont think we necessarily have to look to our friends for advice, but someone to discuss different situations, see how we handle things differently, maybe gain a different perspective, but not necessarily to do what they do. We are each created differently, with different mind sets, with different situations... so no one situation can be the same.

    For me, my examples were often times my own experiences. Taking each situation as a lesson that I would reflect on during and after... Only I know myself... but I also discuss relationship "topic" with close friends or people who I trust... just to get a different perspective. I love picking people's minds and seeing different angles to a given topic/situation... Yet at the end of everything, the best guidance I have comes from God. Everything has to be God-centered, thats where it should start and end.

    I absolutely love relationship discussions, great post!

  6. @Nicwithpurpose Thank you for sharing that. I too was blessed with several great mentors in my life. It is amazing how much a difference it makes. It is sad to me how many folks are missing one or both of their parents, but if we look around carefully we will see that it really did take a village to bring us into adulthood.

    Thank you for sharing yours.

  7. @Ale "As I heard in a sermon, "if you want to be married for 10 years, talk to people who have been married for over 10 years."

    so so so true. It's funny how simple logic like that is avoided like the plague. Maybe it is because we don't want to hear what they have to say. Or maybe we think that because they are older they cannot possibly identify with the issues we have today.

    But as a wise man once said (who we will read soon) There's nothing new under the sun... Sure the details might be a bit different but the human experience is a universal one.

  8. @Eden Thank you!

    The reason why I bring up mentors is because they seem to be forgotten a lot. We know that we have loving friends and that we also have God but the old heads have lived through similar things. I guess the key, regardless of who we are talking to about our path, is knowing what information to take in and what information to leave.

  9. knowing what information to take in and what to leave is usually the hard part... I do love talking to my friends parents or elders... Its fascinating to hear their experiences (good and bad) and see it in comparison to what I've gone through...

    slightly off topic, but still having to do w/ relationships... Have you read the book "The Conversation" by Hill Harper? I haven't but hear its a great book... sold out when I tried to get it though.

  10. @Eden I have heard of the book but I haven't read it. To be honest with you I've been talking to my Dad and Stepmom who have been counseling couples from a christian perspective for the past 10-15 years.

    I am interested in reading that book and the Steve Harvey book just because they seem to be running rampant in pop culture right now.

    Gotta know what has captured the hearts and minds of folk ya know?

  11. @molli ... great point! Often times we seem to ignore what our 'gut' or that 'voice' tells us because everything outside of us is to tempting and enticing. And most often we go against what we know is inherently the right thing, taking it for granted that we can always go back to it, so why not live a little and fall into temptation... Life is trully about choices and its great to have someone (older or younger) to put things into perspective for us and reinforce the good choices...


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