Mentoring: The Art of Calling a Man out of Childhood

I remember it like it was yesterday, though some of the details are a bit hazy. We had just sat down to a family dinner at my grandparents house. It was more than just my parents, grandparents, and siblings, but I don't remember who all was there. Now, you have to understand...when we sat down to the table, Grandpa pretty much prayed the same prayer every time. Any Smith can repeat the phrase, "Bless this food to our bodies, and our bodies to thy work."

But one day, sometime in my teenage years, it went differently. He turned to me after we had all sat down and said, "Sheldon, you pray today." I remember how important I felt that day. I had been invited to pray at my grandpa's table! It didn't register then, but that was the day I became a man to my grandpa.

A friend of mine recently told me about a culture that literally holds a celebration to "call out" the boys to become men. This is what happened to me that day. My grandfather called me out to pray for the family...a job he always did. That was the day he called me out of childhood to join the men.

Your job as a mentor is to call out men from childhood. In the Navy, it means taking junior technicians and making them skilled leaders. In the church, it means to bring out men from the boyhood of high school and college. We grow men...they do not grow themselves. It is up to the experienced men...the men of men, to call out men from childhood and give them the torch.

Is it your turn to pray? Or is it your turn to ask someone else to pray?

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