3 Marks Of Meaningful Masculine Mentoring Relationships
How to build effective relationships with other men.
Think for a moment about the relationships you have in your life? How would you describe them? Many if not most of us long for relationships with other men that are deeper and more authentic than we presently have. Relationships where we can be ourselves, reveal our true selves, feel safe, and understood. These are brothers that accept us, but these relationships are all too rare. We don't need a dozen of these, but men do need a few of these in our life. Here are three marks of meaningful masculine relationships.
THE THREE MARKS:
Mark One | Acceptance and Encouragement.
Why do we long for better and deeper relationships? Because we need relationships where we can find both acceptance in our failings and encouragement in our challenges. These are relationships where we can be sure the other person wants the best for us even though they know our dark side. These are relationships where love, grace, and acceptance are extended both ways and encouragement is a consistent focus. We are fellow warriors who need to support one another in the battles and joys of life. But at the core is an acceptance of each another that stands by each other's side: "even though the world may abandon me, I know that you will not - nor will I abandon you."
Mark Two | Grace and Truth.
Another mark of this kind of relationship is the powerful combination of grace and truth: Unconditional acceptance coupled with the willingness to speak the truth to one another that we need to hear. Just as Jesus came to us full of grace and truth, we extend grace to each other, and we are willing to speak truth to each other. Grace without truth will not help us grow while truth without grace is hard and judgmental.
Mark Three | Safe and Healthy.
The final mark is safe and healthy. Safe in that we can reveal our true selves and struggles without fear of abandonment. Healthy in that we don't stay the way we are but allow key people to speak into our lives so that we become better – as we extend the same to them. This combination is a rare gift to any relationship.
Look for men who exhibit these marks, and you will walk away from your interactions encouraged rather than discouraged. Also, think about how you can give the gift of this kind of a relationship to others. The more we focus on being the kind of friend that Jesus is, the more significant our influence on others will be.
Vince Miller is a speaker, author, and mentor to men. He is an authentic and transparent leader who loves to communicate to audiences on the topics of mentorship, fathering, leadership and manhood. He has authored 13 books and small group curriculum for men and is the primary content creator of all Resolute materials. Contact Vince Miller here. His newest book is Thirty Virtues That Build A Man.