by | Jan 4, 2017 | Christian Living in the Trenches | 6 comments

Whether you’re a homemaker, a businessman, or a vocational Christian leader, I hope you regularly pick the brains of older, mature people whose walk with the Lord you respect. Tapping into their wisdom and experience is a hinge on which your growth and effectiveness will turn.

Select a few of the questions that follow to ask your mentor. The more transparent he or she is, the more valuable the input. If the replies are succinct or too general, pose follow-up probes that seek specificity, clarification, elaboration, or examples.

Why do this? The person who learns only from himself has a fool for a teacher.

  1. If you were 21 again, what would you do differently? Why?
  2. If you were 21 again, what would you do the same? Why?
  3. What book on personal spiritual growth has ministered most to you? Explain.
  4. What book on leadership or church ministry do you consider a “must read”? Why?
  5. In following Christ or in ministry, what keeps folks from finishing well?
  6. What suggestions can you offer that will increase the likelihood of finishing well?
  7. What have you learned about preventing or managing interpersonal conflict?
  8. What is the #1 thing you’ve learned about maintaining a strong marriage?
  9. What’s the #1 thing you’ve learned about parenting young children? (Teens? About relating to grown children?)
  10. When it comes to handling money, what is the best decision you ever made?
  11. When it comes to finances, what do you wish you’d done differently? Why?
  12. How do you keep your personal walk with the Lord vibrant?
  13. How do you spend your personal devotional time?
  14. How do you instill variety into your quiet time so it doesn’t become too prosaic or routine?
  15. What is your favorite book of the Bible? Why?
  16. What is your “life verse” from Scripture? Why did you select it?
  17. (If he or she doesn’t claim a “life verse” …) Cite a verse or passage from the Bible that has challenged or encouraged you. Explain your selection.
  18. Think of a person you consider a “spiritual hero.” Why did you select this person?
  19. You know me well. Cite an area (character, relational skills, attitudes, etc.) in which I need to grow. Be honest and specific. Then help me determine how to jump-start a change for the better.
  20. If YOU were posing questions to a mentor, what is one you’d ask that isn’t on my list? (Then ask your mentor to answer it.)

What other profitable questions have you asked a mentor?

Please note: comments are closed after two weeks. You are welcome to contact me directly after that time if you would like to share your thoughts.


  1. What do you do to relax and/or is your hobby? How does that build into your life?
    What have you found to be the best ways to evangelize your faith?
    Tell me about trials in your life and how they have impacted you spiritually, emotionally and in any other way.
    What aspect of intimacy with God took longest to grow? How can I grow more intimate with God?
    What question or topic haven’t I asked you about, that you are wishing to share with me?

  2. Lynn…outstanding questions! Wish I had included a couple of them. Especially like the middle one about learning from the mentor’s trials. Terry

  3. These are great and timely for me to read through. We are about to do a women’s Bible study through Ephesians 4-6 where we will be challenging ladies to seek a mentor. The last chapters of Ephesians are so practical for our walk with the Lord. We have created a list of accountability questions based on these chapters. It will be great to include your ideas as well to be able to learn from the mentor. Thanks for providing them!

    • Thanks, Mandy. Glad you can use them. See the ones Lynn contributed in a reply to my post prior to yours. Also, if you send me your email, I’ll send info on a resource you might find helpful as a group Bible study leader. terry.powell@ciu.edu

  4. Great questions and very timely as I am encouraging young ladies in Bible Studies, Seminars, Conferences, Church, and family to seek out older women with godly wisdom as mentors (also called mothers in my culture). Thank you for sharing! I will add, 1) what was your greatest challenge as a biblical Christian an how did you overcome? 2) what was your greatest failure and what did God teach you through it? 3) How did failure contribute to your success today? 3) in what way did family and friends influence you in your walk with Christ? 4) how did you deal with and overcome a negative Christian environment?

    • Thanks for your reply, Peggie. And I love the quality of your additional Qs. Asked to the right people, what one learns would be very enriching. Terry

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