You may know Lisa Bevere as a speaker, bestselling author, or wife and mother. But you may not know one of her most treasured titles is that of godmother. Lisa said about godmothering, "You may be new to the idea of a godmother—simply put, she is someone who notices your struggle, transforms your trials and sends you on your way in strength."
Mentoring is an effective method for raising mature Christian disciples within the body of Christ. Jesus provided the best teaching on how to mentor when He said, "If anyone will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross and follow me" (Matt. 16:24).
Paul carried on the teachings of Jesus as he mentored his followers. He said it clearly, "Follow my example as I follow the example of Christ" (1 Cor. 11:1, NIV) and "Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me--put into practice" (Phil. 4:9a).
The word "mentor" is similar to words such as "coach," "counsel" or "disciple." When used as a verb, the contextual, spiritual meaning suggests one who relies on the Holy Spirit to provide insight, change lives and teach through a modeling process. One who has been discipled matures to disciple others.
In a recent Greenelines podcast with Bevere, I was introduced to her new book, Godmothers: Why You Need One, How to Be One. She expands on the broad concept of mentoring in a way that unpacks the compassionate, transformative gifts of a godmother or godparent.
"I am seeing so many people right now frozen by fear, frozen by the 'What if I take a step and it's not God? What if I don't have a job? What if my finances and all the banks collapse? What if this and what if that?'" she said. "I think godparents are the people who come alongside and say, 'I can't answer all those what-ifs. But I can tell you who the answer is. I can tell you that the one who sits in heaven is laughing at the plans of the enemy. He is the one who is your refuge, and He is the one who is your strength, and I can point people to where their source is. I can't even tell you how many times I've heard beautiful, young, pure-hearted, godly people say, 'I'm afraid I'm going to miss God,'" she said.
Bevere ministers on platforms throughout the world and frequently hears about the planted fear of somehow "missing God."
"'I don't want to miss God' sounds noble, but it's really a ploy of the enemy to shut us down. God is not watching for us to fail," she said. "He didn't send His Son to rescue and redeem us so that He could sit on the sidelines of our life, watch us fail, and turn His back on us. He's not trying to trick us."
In Psalm 139, David reassures us that we won't miss His presence:
'You put Yourself behind and before me,
and keep Your hand on me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
it is lofty, and I cannot fathom it.
Where shall I go from Your spirit,
or where shall I flee from Your presence?'" (Ps. 139:5-7, MEV).
A godmother comes alongside her children and through the Holy Spirit adds wisdom and counsel. Bevere believes the primary role of a godparent is to be there, listen and provide spiritual guidance.
"I would have loved to have a woman to come alongside me, walk with me in this life," she said. "She would say, 'I'm going to tell you some things that are going to protect your heart. I want to nourish you with God's Word and help you make the right choices and not make the mistakes I did.' She would open up the pages of her own story so I could learn from her struggles and triumphs. She would teach me to laugh at my future; she would let me know that joy is waiting for me. She would be there for me. She would tell me the truth even if I didn't want to hear it," she said.
Whether we call her a godmother, mentor or coach, Lisa Bevere teaches us that when we help others to discover their place in God's family, we discover our own place at the table.
Dr. Steve Greene is the publisher and executive vice president—Media Group, Charisma Media. Sign up here for Dr. Greene's leadership e-newsletter.
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