Equipping the “Mentee” with the Life Skill of TPM
“Please, make my pain go away!”
- People typically come for ministry because they are in emotional pain and want the pain to go away.
- To the degree that the Mentee understands the process and principles, all questions, difficulties and issues go away. The session will move more smoothly and with less help from the ministry facilitator.
- People have the rest of their lives to identify the lies they believe and receive truth, but if they are not equipped for the journey they will remain dependent on others to help them.
- A significant portion of every ministry session should be committed to training the ministry recipient in the principles and process of TPM.
- When possible, begin each ministry session with training, review and overview. Use what occurs in the session to explain the PROCESS and how the PRINCIPLES were applied.
People typically come for ministry because they are in emotional pain and want the pain to go away. They usually view the ministry facilitator as the “doctor” who is going to do something to remedy the situation. Typically people coming for ministry view themselves as the recipient of the ministry that the facilitator will be doing.
In TPM, the ministry relationship is not viewed as one of a “giver and receiver” or as “facilitator and ministry recipient”, but rather as one of “Mentor and Mentee.” Everything that occurs in a ministry session the person himself can be taught to accomplish on his own. There is nothing that the facilitator of ministry is doing that the person could not learn to do himself. The truth is, everything that is happening is being accomplished because the person is making the needed choices.
Therefore, every act of forward motion should be directly an outcome of the person’s own belief and choice and not the outcome of something that the ministry facilitator is orchestrating. The ministry facilitator is only asking questions to “facilitate” the process, but only because the person does not know the questions and the process himself.
To the degree that the person understands the process and principles, all questions, difficulties and issues go away and the session will move more smoothly and with less help from the ministry facilitator.
As long as the recipient does not know and understand TPM, he will remain dependent upon the ministry facilitator. The emphasis of TPM is upon teaching the person the process and principles of TPM. The facilitator is only facilitating to the degree that it is needed until the person becomes knowledgeable and skilled himself.
Without question, it is important that people come to know the truth. We always rejoice when a person identifies the lies he believes and receives the Lord’s perspective. Therefore attention is always given to this aspect of the ministry session. However, it is just as important that the mentee learn the process and principles of TPM. Therefore, an equally or more important goal is to produce a “disciple” who will grow in the knowledge and practice of TPM, thereby making it a life skill and personal spiritual discipline. This will carry people much further than just praying with them in a session now and then. They have the rest of their lives to identify the lies they believe and receive truth, but if they are not equipped for the journey they remain dependent on others to help them. Every session should be a training in the TPM Process, Principles and Purpose.
The mentoring facilitator should be growing in familiarity with all of the articles on this website and assign his or her “Mentee” applicable homework to complete before coming for a ministry session. Talking through the information in any given article or video is a good way to begin or end a ministry session.
So then, a portion of every ministry session should be committed to training the ministry recipient in the principles and process of TPM. The ministry recipient should not be viewed as a wounded soul dependent upon the minister for help, but rather as a student in training. The ministry facilitator should strongly encourage the person to study on his own, taking advantage of the training that is freely available online. Again, orientation and training should be factored into every session.
You might consider a “sandwich” approach; training-ministry-training. Start each session with training review and overview, do a ministry session and finish with a debriefing of the session explaining how the principles were applied. It is important that you have the person reexamine the lies that he believed and for him to recognize the change and transformation. The Mentee needs to see that something significant occurred. When he leaves the ministry session and may not make it to his car before he is triggered again. However, if the Mentee understands the principles, and can revisit the memory to see that the lie no longer feels true, then he will be hopeful.
Preparing for the “Long haul”
- Many people assume that TPM is some form of counseling, therapy or pastoral care, or worse yet, they think it is some mystical spiritual process where they will be prayed over and hope for a miracle to occur.
- The person should view the ministry relationship as Mentor and Mentee on a journey together.
- There is nothing that the ministry facilitator knows or is doing in the session that the person cannot learn and do, at least in some measure, for himself.
- Every Mentee should be directed to the “Preparing for the Journey: Your First Personal Ministry Session” orientation.
- It is always good if the person receives some measure of freedom during the session, but he does not need to “get through” everything in every session.
- Unless the Mentee grows in knowledge and understanding of the PROCESS, PRINCIPLES and PURPOSE of TPM, he will remain dependent and not make TPM a lifestyle or learn to re-frame his difficulties as opportunities for refinement and renewal.
It is safe to say that when a person comes seeking prayer ministry, it is very likely that he has no idea what to expect. Many people assume that TPM is some form of counseling, therapy or pastoral care. Or worse yet, they think it is some mystical spiritual process where they will be prayed over and hope for a miracle to occur. This is why it is important that good orientation be provided before the first session gets underway.
They will need to be orientated about the roles of all parties involved in the ministry session. It is important that they do not view you to be the one “more spiritual” and helping the one in trouble. But rather, view the relationship as Mentor and Mentee on a journey together. There is nothing that the ministry facilitator knows or is doing in the session that the person cannot learn and do, at least in some measure, for himself.
Point to the Available Training
The person will need to be pointed to the online training that is available for everyone so that he can begin to learn all of the purpose, principles and process of TPM. A good article is the “Process, Principles and Purpose of TPM.” You, the mentor, will need to point out the proper sections in the training that he, the mentee, will need to initially focus on. When he arrives for his first session you will want to review the basic principles and concepts, in addition to walking through the process itself. Explanation for some of the questions will be needed so that he understands what and why you are asking what you are asking. This is especially true for the second question in the EMOTION Box.
Take the Mystery Out of the Process
By walking him through the “MAP” he will see that there is nothing mysterious or strange about TPM and will discover that it is a logical and practical process that is based upon how God designed the mind to work. TPM is not about begging God to do something, but rather about the person taking responsibility for their lives and choosing to feel, remember, expose lies, and receive truth from the Spirit.
Another article that will be helpful is the “Ministry Session Guidelines”. This will provide him with a general overview of what he should expect in a session. Be sure and read this document yourself to be certain that this is what you are following in your sessions. This document equips the person with the knowledge so that he can evaluate whether what is occurring in the session is actually TPM or something else.
It is helpful to look at each one of the questions that will be asked during a session so that he sees that you are not using some form of cognitive therapy, coming up with probing questions on your own, but actually following a prescribed and predictable path. Help them to understand that you are not looking for the “correct” answers to the questions being asked, but rather what feels true to him. You are asking for what “feels true” as opposed to what he may intellectually know to be true.
Help him to understand that most people already know the truth intellectually, but believe lies experientially. The ministry process is designed to not look for the truth that he knows, but rather what feels true and what is the real source of the emotional pain that he feels. It is important for him to know that people rarely receive truth from the Spirit in a ministry session that they did not already know intellectually before the session began.
You should help the person with whom you are praying to learn to listen past his rational and reasonable thinking and choose to listen to his inner thoughts. He needs to “listen” for what he experientially believes, and not what he intellectually believes; to what feels true as opposed to what is true. You can help him to see that he can trust his inner thoughts (what feels true) to be helpful even though not necessarily truthful. This information can be very reliable in identifying lie-based beliefs when doing this ministry process.
The same idea holds true when it comes to remembering a memory. The person never needs to go looking for a memory, but rather just be attentive to whatever comes to his mind as he focuses on what he is feeling. In the same way that he is not looking for the right answer to your questions, he is not looking for the right memory. It is really more about just being aware, attentive, listening, and watching to see what his mind offers up.
Important articles to read are those that explain the issue of anger, the process itself, understanding the questions, the “MAP” overview, etc. Ultimately, you will want them to understand why we do TPM. This is understood to be the purpose of this ministry. TPM is a means by which we can intentionally and purposefully cooperate with God in His work of refining our faith, renewing our minds, and bringing forth genuine transformation of our belief and behavior. When the person discovers this reality, he will make TPM a lifestyle as opposed to viewing it as a way to alleviate emotional pain.
Suggested Procedure of Orientation
A suggested protocol for providing ongoing orientation and training procedure is to begin each session with review and additional orientation. As you are working through the process, stop as needed and explain what you are doing and why you are asking the specific questions. You may also need to prepare them for what you are about to do. To the degree that the person understands and works in tandem with you, the session will move more smoothly and increase in success.
It is always good if the person receives some measure of freedom during the session, but he does not need to “get through” everything in every session. It is more important that he is learning the process, principles and the purpose for doing TPM. He has a lifetime for identifying lies and gaining freedom. If he is not equipped for the journey it is unlikely that he will stay the course without needing someone to help him along the way. Our goal is not only that he will become able to use the principles of TPM for himself, but that he will also someday become the mentor for others.
If all that occurs each session is replacing a lie with the truth, freedom may follow, but the person will not make TPM a lifestyle or learn to re-frame his difficulties as opportunities for refinement and renewal.
What we believe is the “lens” or eyeglasses through which we interpret life as it happens around us. One the roles of the Mentoring facilitator is to help fit the Mentee with wearing glasses that will equip him for his life journey. As the Mentee learns to wear his or her “TPM glasses”, their life difficulties will become less and less a threat and even become viewed as purposeful. When they see that God is using their troubles as a way of exposing their belief, and as they learn to cooperate with God’s work, they can continually find freedom in the moment. This is why the apostle could say, “… we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.” (Rom. 5:3-6)
Being a mentoring facilitator is really nothing new. This is what we are all called to do as members of the Body of Christ. “… for the equipping of the saints for the work of service, to the building up of the body of Christ; until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ.” (Eph. 4:12-13)
Ramifications for Not Equipping the Mentee in TPM