The Value of Menu-Assisted Mentoring
Copyright 20002 by George Patterson
One of the distinctives of New Testament leader training is how Jesus and his apostles gave intensive, guided, focused attention to their apprentices and their flocks. Paul made his training approach explicit to Timothy:
"As for you, my child, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. What you have heard from me through many witnesses entrust to faithful people who will be able to teach others as well. Join me in suffering like a good soldier of Christ Jesus." 2 Tim 2:1-3 ISV
Paul was both source and model of the doctrines, insights, advice and skills he passed on to Timothy, which he was to do for others in turn. This mentoring chain echoes the advice that Jethro gave to Moses (Exodus 18). Such chain reactions find their biblical basis also in Titus 1:5 and Christ’s example.
Of inestimable value to those who prepare small group leaders or new pastors, and their apprentices, is a menu of training activities, materials, readings and advice, arranged in a systematic manner that enables them to be found quickly. Jesus approved the use of varied sources for teaching about the kingdom of God, "Therefore every teacher of the law who has been instructed about the kingdom of heaven is like the owner of a house who brings out of his storeroom new treasures as well as old." The purpose of a training menu is to help integrate, for a new pastor, a variety of disciplines and material to apply at once to his people. While well-experienced pastors and missionaries may not need such a menu, younger trainers probably will.
Many MentorNet readers are familiar with the Train & Multiply™ program and its training menu, the "Student Activity Guide" (SAG). For those who do not possess licensed a T&M™ SAG, the original T&M™, George Patterson has prepared a similar instrument called the "Paul & Timothy Menu". This menu consists of web pages that can be viewed and downloaded from <http://Paul-Timothy.net/>. This could make it easy for you to select activities and studies in response to the needs and ministry opportunities of a church or cell group, as you talk with its leader, or with of a student who is planning ministry.
The P&T Menu differs from the SAG in that it is for general use, and also in some other important ways. Whereas the SAG can be used by less-educated workers and is keyed to the T&M training booklets, the P&T Menu assumes a secondary education and is keyed to seminary-level printed and electronic materials. It also presents local church and cell ministry needs under fourteen sections, compared to the simpler SAG’s eleven. Fortunately, the P&T Menu is also keyed to the T&M booklets, making it a supplement to the SAG for more educated users. Either menu can also incorporate other books of your choosing.
The New Testament requires the following areas of church life in some form. These 14 areas make up the main divisions of the P&T menu:
Each of these ministry areas is further divided into three need levels. Each level includes several activities, scripture readings, recommended supplemental materials, and research suggestions. The three need levels are:
Focus 1: Fruitful Disciples
Focus 2: Church and Home Group Life
Focus 3: Expanded Outreach & Ongoing Ministries
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To find mentoring tools and sites, visit <http://www.MentorAndMultiply.com>.
We invite those who use Train & Multiply™ to write to George Patterson at <GPatterson@cvimail.net>.
For information on T&M™, visit <http://www.TrainAndMultiply.com>.
For information on Paul & Timothy Training, visit <http://www.Paul-Timothy.net>.
For information on "Come, Let Us Disciple the Nations" (CD-ROM) <http://www.AcquireWisdom.com>.
Order the Church Multiplication Guide from your Christian bookshop at <http://www.WCLbooks.com>.
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