Tag Archive: john wimber

i am participating in NaBloPoMo which is known as National Blog Posting Month in which the invitation or challenge is to post a blog every day [except on day 2 of the month when you are camping in a place with no internet signal even for your cute little hotspot device!] and for this one i decided to take up one of the prompts they provided:

Do you have a mentor? Tell us about him or her. Are you a mentor to someone else? Tell us what that relationship has added to your life.

mentori wouldn’t say i have a mentor. in fact the only story i tell of having a mentor is one i had for literally five minutes. a great pastory guy by the name of Craig Duvel who i have grown to respect in leaps and bounds over the years but who always lived in a province far away from mine [and since he moved to my province, i moved country so that didn’t help a lot]. i remember sitting with him at a camp and i think it was related to my struggles with pornography/masturbation at the time but his advice was, ‘Keep a Short Account with God’ and i have used that and shared that many times since then. He told a story of how one morning at 3am he was woken up and remembered some unconfessed sin in his life and how he went to the lounge and fell facedown before God and made it right with God… the idea being that you start a new day with a fresh slate not being burdened or judged by your brokenness or any recent mess you may have been the cause of. And it works. When we allow sin to build up, it is like building a tab at a bar – it gets to the point where it is more natural to say, “Stick it on my tab” than it is to really be grieved by it or want to deal with it. So any time you become aware of sin in your life, or anything breaking intimate relationship with Him then right there and then, or as soon as possible, deal with it, make right and if you need to make right with people too, then do it as soon as you can.

so only 5 minutes of mentoring, but it was completely helpful.


for me it has usually been a story of either not recognising any older men in the contexts i am in who i respect in the sense that i would want them mentoring me, or that those people who i have seen with those things  just seeming so incredibly busy with so much other stuff that they would not be suitable candidates. i definitely had a mentor in my earliest youth leading role in terms of helping me lead and grow in confidence and maturity in a lot of leadership related areas, but i think to some extent we had a difference of vision and ethos and so it didn’t feel like the kind of mentoring i imagine, but i am completely grateful for his presence in my life back then and owe a lot to him.

but in the absence physical mentors in terms of men who are older than me pouring into my life it has become a combination of literary mentors [so the influence of passionate men of God like Keith Green and John Wimber and others who spoke into my life through the pages of books], peer mentors [so being co-mentored by good friends of a more similar age or even younger like Sean Du Toit, Bruce Collins, Rob Lloyd, Andy Pitt and i could go on] and also through men like Paul and Peter, David and Moses, and of course Jesus Christ. none of these were formal mentoring relationships, but through watching and listening and late night conversations and hearing stories of and from, these people spoke [and continue to speak] loudly into my life.

‘Wounds from a friend can be trusted, but an enemy multiplies kisses.’ [Proverbs 27.6]

i have absolutely loved this verse and i stand by it. if you do not have people in your life who have the invitation to speak honestly [and cause something that feels like a wound cos who likes rebuke ever?] then you are doing yourself an absolute disservice. Rob Lloyd has been one of those voices in my life [his description of me as reminding him of Paul – “passionate yet tactless” – is one that stands strong in my memory] and i have so much love and appreciation towards him for that and taking a quick look over myself, all of those bruises have healed in such a way that i can’t even remember where they were [but the lessons have stuck!]

so be mentored! it is so important – any fool who thinks they can walk this life well by themselves is one. and a good way to start is by asking – is there a man/woman you deeply respect or feel you can learn something from? Ask them if they will have coffee with you once a week, once a month. [hint: pay for it! This is completely something worth investing in – for the price of a regular cup of coffee or breakfast you can have your life revolutionised? seems about right] The worst they can do is say no. [Well, i guess the worst they can do is whip out a swordfish and carve their initials in your face but if that happens it is an indication that they were possibly not the right person to be mentoring you?]

and if you can’t find someone to ask then do what i did in terms of finding mentors and role models elsewhere. be careful not to pedestalise them – the closer you get to those ‘perfect’ people who are so close to God and so good at life, the more flawed you will see them to be, so stay grounded in admiring the Jesus in them and learning from that.

try and be mentored by a diverse crowd. if you are a white male [as i am] and only invite white males to mentor you [through the books you read, music you listen to, preaches you hear] then you are missing out on a whole lot of good life lessoning. invite someone from a different race or culture than your own. from a different gender. from a very different generation. and start with stories – listen to their life, hear lessons they have learned, obstacles they have overcome, failures they have endured and successes they have witnessed and been a part of.

it may not look like you want it to look. but if you are not being mentored it is largely your own fault. do something about it.

and perhaps a great way to start is to find someone who you can mentor, meet with regularly, intentionally pour into… but more of that in my next post…

[And if you have a moment to comment, I would LOVE to hear some stories of people who have mentored you in a way you found helpful]

[To continue to the next part on being a MENTOR, click here]

i have been involved with the vineyard church for around ten years now and although i am never going to be a ‘lift high this denomination over another’ i have really enjoyed most of my time here – it is not the one true church for sure and we can definitely still learn and incorporate a lot of stuff from other denominations, but there are a couple of specifically vineyard things that i really do enjoy…

the one thing that concerned me from time to time as i hung out with bunches of grapes (okay, that’s probly not the collective noun for people in the vineyard) was hearing about this guy called john wimber who pretty much started the vineyard church movement and hearing about him a lot in the context of ‘what would john wimber do/say?’ – i’m not saying this was everyone, at all (in fact in my six years at stellenbosch i can’t remember hearing chris the boss say it) or that it was excessively rampant, but from time to time there was the nervous concern that this is a guy who some people are putting on a pedestal (as the mega-christian, the one to follow) and i always get nervous when anyone replaces Jesus as the person we are meant to be following [altho it is okay to have role models – Paul spoke of following him as he followed Christ – we just need to be careful]

then my good buddy rob showed me a dvd of john giving his testimony and doing a preach once and i resonated so completely well with him and so understood a little bit more why people have the tendency to spurt “john wimber said…” because he did say some pretty cool things – and then as a farewell gift, chris the boss gave me a copy of ‘Everyone gets to play – john wimber’s writings and teachings on life together in Christ’ which i’d been wanting for a while and i am busy reading that, and it is fast becoming my top three book number three (after ‘No Compromise’ and ‘The Irresistible Revolution’)

‘Everybody gets to play’ was the phrase john wimber used to use to describe the priesthood of all believers – that it is not just about the big guy in front – the “man of God” or “the man of power for the hour” – but that the Holy Spirit comes and lives in us when we follow Jesus and so all of us get to do the stuff – i really like that and it’s some of the wimberisms that really make understanding how to live this Jesus-following thing a lot easier

i will probably write out some excerpts of the book so you can get an idea of why you should get hold of a copy, but for now i want to really highly recommend it – john wimber looked like a local mall santa claus without the red clothes – fat, smiley, bearded man who was all about trying to love God and people better, and help the church do it along the way. Simple, straightforward, challenging writing – an easy read in terms of simple explanation of biblical concepts and some great chapters so far on love, commitment, growing as a Christ follower, money, prayer and spiritual gifts.

do yourself a favour and seek out a copy.

[Everyone Gets To Play – John Wimber ISBN 978-0-9817705-7-4]

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