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Spiritual Mentoring Tip #3
Posted by Clare

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#3  Ask your protégé questions that will help you, help them.

A great way to get to know your protégé is to ask questions. People love to talk about themselves. As they answer, watch their face and listen to the inflection in their voice. These “tells” will help you understand who, or what excites them as well as reveal disappointments and fears they have. Remember: how they answer is as important as what they say.

  • In what areas of life do you think you are most successful? What’s working for you?
  • What are some of the greatest challenges you’re facing right now?
  • Who else in your life gives you Christian advice or counsel?
  • How would you describe your relationship with Christ?
  • If you could change anything in your life right now, what would it be?
  • Is God asking you to grow or change in any area of your life that you’re reluctant to do?
  • If married: Describe your marriage relationship.
  • If a parent: Describe your relationship with each of your children.
  • What are you most passionate about?
  • Do you feel comfortable with your level of biblical knowledge? Are there specific questions about God or the Bible you want to discuss over the next few months?
  • Is there anyone in your life right now that you have strong negative feelings about? Why?
  • What frightens you in the middle of the night?
  • Do you know what your spiritual gifts are?
  • How are you serving your church or the Kingdom of God outside of your family?
  • If your spouse were here, what would she say she would like to see different in your life?
  • What is your comfort level in sharing your faith with non-Christians? What happened the last time you did?

I’m grateful to Paul Anthes, one of my protégés and a friend, for a number of these questions.

Clare De Graaf

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Comments (2)
  1. Jason @ said...

    These are great questions Clare, and I can certainly use them with my students, but I like even more the insight to watch which ones really resonate with the person asked and how. Thanks!

    • Clare said...

      Jason, I’ve found that some men feel an accusation in these questions. I try to explain that like a good doctor, I’m trying to understand better what they really need from me. I acknowledge the questions can feel “prosecutorial” but I’ve not found a more delicate way of getting at what they need.

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