I know that the word “relationships” is one that has several meanings to several people. So in the interest of a unified understanding, I will like to clarify that I am not only talking about the love relationship that exists between a man and a woman here.
By Destiny Shaping Relationships, I am talking about the kind of relationships that have the power to affect a man’s destiny forever! As a matter of fact, if a man misses out on any of these relationships, he can kiss his future and destiny goodbye (except for the intervention of Almighty God)
When you read in Amos 3:3, the bible says “Can two walk together, except they be agreed?”
The Message Translation puts it as “Do two people walk hand in hand if they aren’t going to the same place?”
In other words, when two people walk together without being sure they are going to the same place in life, one of them may likely get to the end and discover that he has been on the wrong journey all the while!
So there are 4 types of Destiny Building Relationships we will be looking at today but let me stress that none of these relationships will work maximally except a man has made the Lord Jesus his Lord and Savior.
In other words, these are only human relationships that can help you forge ahead in the direction of God’s calling for your life BUT they do NOT take the place of your relationship with God.
With that being said, the first type of relationship we will consider is the:
1) Your Relationship with Mentor(s)
By definition, mentorship refers to a relationship in which a MORE EXPERIENCED or MORE KNOWLEDGEABLE person helps to GUIDE a less experienced or less knowledgeable person.
From this definition, you notice that your mentor is someone who is either more experienced or more knowledgeable. But most importantly, it has to be someone you have access too.
In other words, you can’t say that Bishop T. D. Jakes is your mentor when you can’t reach out to him when you get to a spot in life where you need to make specific decisions.
You can have teachers and people who inspire you in life, but you should also have a mentor or father/mother figure who is committed to helping you fulfill your destiny.
Note the use of the expression “… who is committed to helping you fulfill your destiny” I used this because, in mentorship, there is an understanding of where you are going and the mentor determines to invest their time, experience, knowledge and other resources to help you get there.
A perfect Mentor Relationship in the Bible is that relationship between Eli and the boy “Samuel”
Eli and Samuel
1 Sam 3:4-6
“That the LORD called Samuel: and he answered, Here am I. And he ran unto Eli, and said, Here am I; for thou calledst me. And he said, I called not; lie down again. And he went and lay down. And the LORD called yet again, Samuel. And Samuel arose and went to Eli, and said, Here am I; for thou didst call me. And he answered, I called not, my son; lie down again.”
1 Sam 3:7-10
“Now Samuel did not yet know the LORD, neither was the word of the LORD yet revealed unto him. And the LORD called Samuel again the third time. And he arose and went to Eli, and said, Here am I; for thou didst call me. And Eli perceived that the LORD had called the child. Therefore Eli said unto Samuel, Go, lie down: and it shall be, if he call thee, that thou shalt say, Speak, LORD; for thy servant heareth. So Samuel went and lay down in his place. And the LORD came, and stood, and called as at other times, Samuel, Samuel. Then Samuel answered, Speak; for thy servant heareth.”
In the above scriptures, we see the Lord calling Samuel as a little boy. Please note that at this time, Samuel had been with Eli for a while. But in verse 7, the scripture says that “Samuel did not yet know the Lord”
This means that he was still immature and inexperienced in the things of the Lord but God was calling him into a deeper dimension than he had ever known. However, because of his inexperience, Samuel was misinterpreting the voice and call of God upon his life.
Samuel sincerely thought it was Eli calling him and he kept running back and forth to Eli. That is why one of the worst tragedies of life is to be sincere but sincerely wrong!
How many people have been in Samuel’s situation where they honestly thought something was the right thing to do but were wrong? For many of them, they only get to find out when the deed has been done and they are left to count their loses.
We see that on three different occasions, Samuel ran to Eli thinking that it was Eli that called him. Then by the third time, the Bible tells us in the latter part of Verse 8: “And Eli perceived that the LORD had called the child.”
That was the missing link for Samuel! That was what was going to determine whether or not Samuel stepped into what God had called him into! Thankfully, because of Eli’s experience with the Lord, he was able to interpret what Samuel was missing and gave him the right counsel on how to respond to the voice of God.
“Eli said unto Samuel, Go, lie down: and it shall be, if he call thee, that thou shalt say, Speak, LORD; for thy servant heareth.”
Except for Eli’s guidance, Samuel may never have known “how” to respond to the call of God upon his life. And worse off, he may have lost the call eventually because only God knows if the Lord would have called out to him again after that fourth time!
Now, imagine for a moment that Samuel didn’t have access to a more experienced and more knowledgeable person who could put him through in the things of God. He would probably have never known it was God that was calling him.
Then all the mighty works that the Bible records that Samuel did as a prophet may never have happened, let alone be recorded for us to learn from. And we may never have known what a glorious destiny God had planned for the boy.
Who Is Your Mentor?
You see, the reason many people miss out on God’s agenda for their lives is that their inexperience gets the better part of them and they don’t have someone in their lives to guide them in the right path.
Of course, I understand that we have the Holy Spirit and He teaches us all things. But you must also understand that there will be times when you need the Holy Spirit to come through for you in a human form!
Who is the Eli in your life right now?
Who is that experienced man or woman that you can always reach out to when the need arises?
If you don’t have such a person in your life, you might end up living below the possibilities embedded in your destiny!
Now, you should also note that choosing a father in the faith isn’t something you wake up one morning and decide on! You have to be led by the Spirit of God to know who He wants to lead you into the Promised Land of your destiny.
You want to prayerfully seek God’s guidance in this area because following the wrong mentor is probably worse than not having one at all!
David and Solomon
Remember Solomon and how we all praise him for being a wise man?
We all agree that the guy must have been too smart to know what to request for when God gave him a blank cheque and permitted him to ask for anything.
But how did Solomon know what to ask for? Why didn’t he ask for wealth, the head of his enemies or anything else?
The answer is in what his mentor taught him earlier …
“For I was my father’s son, tender and only beloved in the sight of my mother. He taught me also, and said unto me, Let thine heart retain my words: keep my commandments, and live. … Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.” (Prov 4:3-4, 7)
Somewhere along the line, David already taught Solomon that wisdom is the principal thing and that he should get wisdom even if it cost him everything that he had. So the moment God asked him that question, he knew exactly what to go for!
Whose words resonate in your spirit when life throws its challenges your way? What has your father or mentor taught you that you are holding to heart and applying today? What counsel have you received that has now formed the guiding principle for your life?
My first book was written out of the wisdom I garnered from a 5-minute conversation with one of my mentors Rev (Dr.) Albert Kitcher. In that conversation, he told me something about writing books that completely changed my life. I have since gone on to write and publish more than 60 of my books and started a publishing consulting firm (all stemming out of one 5-minute advice)
How to Build Your Relationship with Your Mentor
Okay, you probably have a mentor already but did you know that just having a mentor isn’t all there is? You have to learn how to service that relationship and keep it alive.
Many people have mentors but because they haven’t been servicing the relationship, the grace of God on the mentor doesn’t flow in their direction as it should. You have to understand that relationships are like a two-edged sword.
While it is true that your mentor is there to guide you through life, do not make the mistake of letting it be a one-sided relationship! If you only get and collect from your mentor, you will never get the best of what is possible with them. You must find a known or felt need of the mentor and meet it.
The Difference between Joshua and Caleb
When we read about the Israelites journey, we see that every single person of the older generation perished in the wilderness except 2 men (Joshua and Caleb)
We also see that these men (Joshua and Caleb) were the only members of the committee of the twelve spies that came back with good reports. That means they both had a positive mindset and mentality which the rest of the people didn’t have.
But there was still ONE thing that separated between Joshua and Caleb. There was only one thing that gave Joshua the edge over Caleb and ensured that it was Joshua that got the mantle of leadership after Moses.
What is it?
The word is Service!
In describing Joshua, the bible tells us
“And Joshua the son of Nun, the servant of Moses, one of his young men, answered and said, My lord Moses, forbid them.” (Num 11:28)
Notice that Joshua is described as “the servant of Moses”. And he is quoted to have said: “my lord Moses” (Meaning my master Moses).
It was Joshua’s service to Moses that separated him from Caleb and secured his destiny as Moses’ successor. If he hadn’t served, God will have had to look for another successor for Moses somehow.
In other words, you MUST serve your mentor if you are to get the most out of them!
Find a need in your mentor’s life that you can meet and see if heaven will not open on your behalf. Service ALWAYS opens doors but serving your mentor opens destiny-enhancing doors!
Every man (no matter how great he already is) has a need. When you meet their need, you particularly get their attention and provoke the grace of God upon their lives for your good.
I understand we live in a time when most people want to be served without serving first. But if you want to keep the heavens over your life continually open, you should value service highly.
Elijah and Elisha
Another great example of a Mentor relationship is the one between Elijah and Elisha.
In the course of their walk together, Elisha had several opportunities to “move on” from Elijah but he stayed with him till the end. Do not think that all the while they were together Elisha was just following and looking.
The bible later described Elisha to us as the man who poured water on Elijah’s hands.
“… Here is Elisha the son of Shaphat, which poured water on the hands of Elijah.” (2 Kings 3:11)
Listen, dear brothers and sisters, your destiny hangs on the hinges of strategic relationships and one of such relationships is the one with your mentor.
If you don’t have one, you are cheating yourself out of so much. And if you have one and are not actively serving them, you are doing yourself a disservice!
Never allow the kind of growth and spiritual promotion that makes you too big to serve. It is the secret key for a consistent increase in the kingdom of God.
Do you know of any other Mentor Relationship in scriptures or contemporary context? Let’s discuss them in the comments below.