Exodus: Of Laws and Love

Devocional

Enjoying the Fruit of Mentorship

By Danny Saavedra

“So Moses went out to meet his father-in-law and bowed down and kissed him. They greeted each other and then went into the tent. Moses told his father-in-law about everything the Lord had done to Pharaoh and the Egyptians for Israel’s sake and about all the hardships they had met along the way and how the Lord had saved them. Jethro was delighted to hear about all the good things the Lord had done for Israel in rescuing them from the hand of the Egyptians. He said, ‘Praise be to the Lord, who rescued you from the hand of the Egyptians and of Pharaoh, and who rescued the people from the hand of the Egyptians. Now I know that the Lord is greater than all other gods, for he did this to those who had treated Israel arrogantly.’ Then Jethro, Moses’ father-in-law, brought a burnt offering and other sacrifices to God, and Aaron came with all the elders of Israel to eat a meal with Moses’ father-in-law in the presence of God.”—Exodus 18:7–12 (NIV)

If you’ve read my devotionals for any amount of time, you probably know that I LOVE Star Wars! One of my favorite Star Wars stories is the series Star Wars: Rebels. I enjoyed seeing the master and apprentice relationship of Kanan and Ezra. Over four seasons, we saw Kanan teach Ezra to be a Jedi and use the Force, but more importantly as Ezra points out Kanan taught him “about life, about being a good person.”

As I watched, I couldn’t help but think, That’s what discipleship should look like for every Christian! In the same way Kanan facilitated Ezra’s growth into a Jedi, we all need people to guide us as we learn to live like Jesus, grow in our relationship with Him, and walk in the gifts and calling He has for us. And then likewise, we get to pass that on to someone else through the continued legacy of discipleship. The account found in Exodus 18 between Moses and his mentor/father-in-law Jethro is a beautiful example for us to follow.

Today, I’d like to point out three specific aspects of a discipleship relationship that we all desperately need and most of us are often lacking:

  1. A bond defined by love and intimacy: Moses went out to greet Jethro when he visited. While it was custom to meet an honored guest, the act of obeisance (bowing in respect) was wholly voluntary. It shows Moses’ humility and affection toward his most treasured mentor figure.

The mentor/disciple bond should be marked by mutual love, affection, devotion, respect, and humility. Do you have a mentor figure who has walked with you and shown you what it looks like to walk with Jesus? When was the last time you honored them like Moses honored Jethro?

  1. Celebration: Moses told Jethro everything God had done, and Jethro rejoiced and praised the Lord with Moses! It’s a beautiful thing to read.

To share together in the work of God, to relive what He’s done in your life with someone who’s been there with you and seen you grow is so crucial for you and them! What has the Lord done in your life recently? How have you seen Him move and work? Tell a mentor figure about it! Call them or connect in person. Give them the privilege of experiencing the joy of the Lord with you!

  1. Breaking bread: There’s something so wonderful about sharing a meal with someone, particularly someone who’s been significant in your discipleship journey. Here we see Moses, his brother, and those who serve with him share a meal with his father-in-law “in the presence of God.” That’s so cool!

    I pray the next time you share a meal with other believers, whether to have fellowship, share stories, celebrate, mourn, seek counsel, and/or just enjoy deep human relationships, that you wouldn’t breeze by it as just another everyday activity. Instead, you’d remember you’re breaking bread “in the presence of God” and to the praise of His glory!

Pause: What can you learn about Christian relationships, particularly mentor/discipleship relationships, from Moses and Jethro?

Practice: This week, find the time to connect with a mentor figure and share what God is doing in your life, what He’s showing you, and how He’s worked in this season.

Pray: Father, thank You for placing me into a family! Thank You for the spiritual fathers, mothers, aunts, uncles, brothers, and sisters you’ve placed and used in my life to draw me closer to You, teach me about You, reveal Your truth and wisdom to me, and spur me on to live and walk with You in the power and presence of Your Spirit. I pray for them today. I pray for every person You’ve used to sanctify and grow me in Your grace and knowledge. And I pray that You would use me in the lives of others to draw them to Yourself and teach them how to live for You and love Your more and more each day! Amen.