By Jim Mitchell

Reflecting on perhaps his most treasured and intimate spiritual experience, when he and two other disciples stood on the mountaintop and witnessed the radiant Christ transfigured in His heavenly glory, not to mention the appearance of Moses and Elijah, the Apostle Peter makes this amazing statement: “And we have the prophetic word made more sure, to which you do well to pay attention.” (2 Peter 1:19) 

Think about that.  Peter actually saw Jesus Christ in full glory.  He met with resurrected Old Testament saints.  He even heard the audible voice of God thundering from heaven!  How often have you longed for that to happen?  Surely, if ever there was a time to revel in personal experience… that was it.  Yet, what makes Peter really stand up and pay attention is the written word of God, “not made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit.” 

It’s almost as if Peter is saying to his readers (and to us), “Don’t envy me for my incredible experience.  Don’t wish you were there.  It was great, but you have something even more certain to build your faith upon.  You are the fortunate ones!”  This is similar to the words of Jesus spoken to Thomas who had refused to believe until he could see and touch and feel the resurrected Lord’s very wounds.  “Because you have seen Me, have you believed?  Blessed are they who did not see, and yet believed.” (John 20:29)

Blessed indeed!  Blessed are those who struggle, who have not yet seen God provide in the way they desire, but who choose to believe His Word anyway.  And blessed are the mentors who point them in that direction. 

Sharing a personal testimony carries powerful weight and makes us more real for many mentees.  Listening intently to their story surely communicates compassion and sympathy.  But all experiences and opinions must yield to the Scriptures.  In this we as mentors “will do well to pay attention.”