Early last week I learned that one of my mentors, Dr. Haddon Robinson, passed away. Our relationship was one of God’s good gifts. I won’t bore you with details about what we enjoyed together, but will get to the point of this post about being a high EQ preacher.
In their book, Emotional Intelligence 2.0, authors Bradberry and Greaves advise, “Talk To a Skilled Self-Manager” (p. 112). In other words, make sure you have a mentor. If your mentor is a good preaching pastor, it’s a safe bet their emotional intelligence is high.
Sometimes a professor can function as a mentor. That was the case with Haddon. Classroom interaction led to ongoing interaction where I could observe his communication and people-skills. Other times a pastor or former pastor can become a mentor.
It’s a great relationship, but can also cause some angst. Mentors worth their salt are sometimes tough on us. As you can see from the picture below, Haddon was not overly thrilled with what he was hearing in the classroom that day. He combined tenderness and toughness.
A good mentor will, at times, push you out of your comfort zone. Mentors don’t always know God’s will for us. That means that following their suggestions could cause some bumps along The Way.
Like a good coach, good mentors want the best for us. That means they will push us hard to excel. In order to do that they will have to be the bearer of bad news at times to keep things real. Rarely anyone enjoys having their life or sermons critiqued. But it’s so important for spiritual and ministerial growth.
Part of being a high EQ preacher is having a mentor, someone who manages themselves and their sermons well. I hope our Lord has provided one for you (sovereignty); I hope you have been actively pursuing one (human responsibility).