Spiritual Mentors

I was given an unbelievable gift yesterday. I was able to meet someone I’ve looked up to, admired and emulated for many years.

John Ortberg has been an influential voice in my life and my journey with God for the past 15 years. I have read every book he has written. I have preached the majority of his sermons. I have used his style of speaking and writing to develop my own voice and style as a communicator.

I have wanted to meet him since 1998. What made meeting him yesterday so special is that my friend, and in many ways, mentor, Pete, made it happen.

We have shared an appreciation for John Ortberg and talked about his writings and teaching for YEARS. Pete was being interviewed by John about Plan B yesterday and allowed me to tag along. (Actually, I hounded him about it for at least a week.)

What I realized yesterday is how God has used both of these men in my life to form and shape me. I believe that we all need voices that speak Truth into our lives from a far. Often for me these people are writers or speakers or preachers that “mentor” from a distance. John Ortberg has been that for me.

But we also need mentors that can speak into the application of that Truth. These people know us. They love us. They have our trust. They have our best interest at heart. Pete has been that for me. I hope we have been that for each other.

He has been there when I was knocking it out of the park to remind me that it is God’s success and not mine. He has been there for me in my darkest moment begging me to allow God’s Spirit to speak to my heart. He has offered me truth and he has extended to me grace.

I don’t know where I would be without John Ortberg. I don’t know where I’d be without Pete Wilson. I’m thankful for spiritual mentors that God has placed in my life, and I am so thankful to have captured a moment with them in the same frame. I will cherish this memory forever.

Do you have a spiritual mentor?

18 Responses to Spiritual Mentors

  1. ministers from afar that have been mentoring to me are Greg Boyd of Woodland Hills and Mark Driscoll from Mars Hill Church.

    and lately I have been reading blogs from Gabe Lyons, Lindsey Nobles (that’s how I found you, via Jenni Catron). And a lot of others who are sharing their faith journey.

    two organizations that speak a lot into my life are Neue and Catalyst.

    and in my own local context, there is a young married man who has impacted me, being an old single man. We are engaged in a mutual mentorship. It’s quite the experience.

    and last but not least, musically, my mentors have been Jars of Clay; Kim Walker-Smith and Jesus Culture; Derek Webb; Jenn Knapp; and Alabaster Box.

  2. Pete Wilson

    Just seeing this bro. It was so awesome to share that moment with you. Certainly a highlight of Catalyst this year for me.

    Thanks so much for your kind words. Your friendship means the world to me!!

  3. Auntsusanelaine

    Flossie Maxwell has mentored me through her words and actions — she has taught me how to pray, how to teach, how to study the Bible, and she has loved me like a family member! Thanks, Flossie 🙂

  4. Yaaaay! So excited for you. John’s book “If you want to walk on water…” was given to me at a difficult time of my life and it made a huge difference – love him! Love me some mentors… have some IRL ones and some from afar

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  6. Anonymous

    Whoops! And I missed Jason who challenges me often (“smacks me about the head” as I say) with his blog as well.

  7. I’m a bit like Kyle in that I usually take away something from every pastor I hear or book I read. There’s a few pastors whose sermons are “don’t miss” online for me like Mark Driscoll and Jared Wilson. Honestly, if I had to narrow it down to one person, I’d probably have to say Pete because he’s the one I get on the most consistent basis.

  8. Kerry Cox

    Nice Photoshop job! No way did you really meet Ortberg!!!


  9. Can I say everyone?

    It seems that I am taking something from everyone and really being mentored by each conversation, each thing I see, and each thing I read.

  10. Anonymous

    I’m glad God blessed you with this moment with two men who have spoken His words into your life. For me, for about the last year and a half it’s been: James MacDonald through Walk in The Word, Dennis Rainey & Bob LePine through Familylife Today & and a man of God at church about 2 decades my senior whom I barely knew until then who has spoken wisdom & love into my life and spent countless hours in prayer for me & for my family. For the last two months it’s been you and Trisha through this very blog.
    I am so grateful for all of you.