1 Corinthians 11:1 Be imitators of me as I am of Christ.
Imitate, mimic, copy, watch me and do as I do, be as I am. I am following Christ. You follow me; I follow Christ, therefore, you follow Christ by following my example. Paul is so confident in his walk with Jesus that he is willing to say, follow me.
1 Corinthians 4:15-16 For though you have countless guides in Christ, you do not have many fathers. For I became your father in Christ Jesus through the gospel. I urge you then, be imitators of me.
Paul clearly draws a line between guide and father. A guide can lead you through something and point you in the right direction but a father is personally invested. You are his, he is yours. A father’s care is beyond guide. It is also, protector, guardian, authority, parent, caregiver and caretaker – all motivated by love.
Philippians 4:9 Whatever you have learned, received, heard or seen in me – practice these things and the God of peace will be with you.
Paul is saying here, not only observe and learn but put it into practice. Make it your habit to do these things. And what’s the payoff? Peace!
So what about you? As a mentor are you comfortable saying to your students, “Follow me as I follow Jesus?” Are you living a life worthy of the gospel? Phil. 1:27-30 If not, then what? Do you dumb down your mentoring to make yourself the standard by saying, “If I am not doing it then I cannot require someone else to do it.” or are you willing to follow Jesus in a way that you are confident brings honor and glory to God and you would be fully confident saying, “Imitate me as I imitate Christ.”