Testimonies

Affirmations from trainees who are becoming trained mentors with the most recent testimony on top of the list:

9.  Wallah Sormallah Wilsitoe Sr. JP. (Monrovia, Liberia 2024)
“I am a Liberian and a current student under the tutorship of Professor Ron with Biblical Mentoring.   From the time I started the Biblical Mentoring, I am being able to enrich my calling as a pastor – having invested more than 40 years in our ministries.  Not only that but the one-to-one biblical mentoring has equipped the scope of my ministry philosophy in which I am being trained to mentor others as well.  Eventually, that will include members of our church fellowship and the drivers or the owner operators of the Farm-to-Market Tractors (BUVs) as we raise the funds for that project.  I am committed to helping as the Project Manager in cooperation with SEED Liberia, BUV Ministry and Biblical Mentoring.  Ron is also mentoring / training my son, Perfect, so he can also train others who train others, etc. – disciples who make disciples.  Praise God for Pastor Frederick Hill who was so generous to introduce me to Pastor Ron who is skilled in training for expository study of the Bible.  We are grateful that Brother Frederick is now back in Liberia after many years in the USA and able to better develop his SEEDLiberia.org.” 

8.  Josh Rose (Brentwood, TN 2022).
“I first met Ron at Crossroads of the Nations Church in Brentwood, TN.  When prompted by our pastor, Rev. Stephen Young, the pastor for the Japanese Worship, to tell me about this one-to-one opportunity to memorize scriptures and grow spiritually with the discipleship memory verses (Topical Memory System), I thought it would be a good chance for me to grow spiritually and work on my communication skills.  (Rev. Young has referred five individuals to Ron’s work so far.)  There were 60 verse cards for 60 weeks – a little over a year, having a short weekly call with Ron sharing the verse then reading and sharing our commentary of the Word around that verse – the context.  These calls helped me as I was going through events that occurred during the year.  I remember coming back home from either working as a suit salesman or from school or both to get my Bible open and ready for the 30 minute weekly call with Ron – even prior to eating my dinner.  We each had to be flexible at times when we either postponed or cancelled our weekly call.  That kind of flexibility is helpful with busy schedules.  At the end of each call, we shared one personal prayer request then prayed for each other before signing off until the next week’s call.  Overall, these calls were a big help to my communication skills as I prepare to become a missionary by God’s Grace.  There are many benefits to this Biblical Mentoring ministry.” 

7.  Rev. David Keeney (Dunbar, WV  2021).
David is my cousin and is the pastor of Dunbar First Baptist Church near Charleston, WV).  Below is a link to his sermon on November 21, 2021 titled Valuing God’s Word.  Since he is a busy pastor who already knows a lot of memory verses, I offered him training sessions for 12 weeks using Biblical Mentoring.  This training will help him use our system to train others which he is already doing.   Watch his whole sermon but if you have limited time, please watch from 22:00 to 29:00 as he describes how God has blessed his lifelong  commitment and his renewed commitment to memorizing Scriptures.  Go to:  https://youtu.be/atLLFw9tInUfor a 7 minute testimony of the value of our mission. 

6.  Blake S (Brentwood, TN  2020):
“I first met Ron at LifeTime Fitness, in Franklin (TN), where we still run into each other frequently. We would always say hi to each other, making small talk and what not, until one day, Ron kindly and humbly asked me to be a participant in his Biblical Mentoring ministry. He simply stated we would meet for 30 minutes, once a week and each week we would cover a different chapter in the various books of the Bible, in which each chapter contained a memory verse. With no other excuse than to say yes, I, very thankfully, accepted Ron’s offer that evening and we have been meeting once a week by phone since, for 27 weeks and counting! This program has been such a blessing for me. Sometimes, as people, we get involved in so many things on a day to day basis that life can so easily become hectic and overwhelming. Taking 30 minutes a week to meet with Ron by phone and talk about God and his Word has become so grounding for me. Church services are amazing and I would recommend anyone and everyone to find a local fellowship that gives them a sense of belonging. But, these services oftentimes take the form of a lecture, rather than an open discussion. The one-to-one discussions that these meetings with Ron have sparked and strengthened my faith more than anything other than life experiences. I am so thankful for Ron and his mentoring & training!  I am currently praying for the person I will be mentoring & training when we finish our 60 verses.

5.  Frederick H (Birmingham, AL; 2020):
“I was introduced to this one-on-one discipleship program a little over a year ago. After training by Ron Lively, I have been working with my college aged daughter who is studying away from home.  It is providing us a fantastic opportunity for ongoing instruction and regular in-depth communication on both a spiritual and social level.  We talk about many of the challenges she faces day-to-day.  I encourage and challenge her without it being awkward.  She has agreed to disciple her friends.  I believe this Biblical Mentoring will help her grow both as a person and as a leader.  It is such a wonderful tool and a great blessing!” 

4.  Ingram H (Nashville, TN; 2019:
“In addition to the fellowship and exchange of ideas from this study, I was reminded of how important the Scriptures are and how I am called to help others develop a deeper relationship with Christ.  This discipleship study provides all of the guidelines to do this.  I highly recommend it!”

3. Dean H (Seneca, SC; 2019):
“Ron’s encouragement for me to get involved in his discipleship mentoring program using Francis Cosgrove’s book – Essential of Discipleship, has been a game changer for me.  Using a gridiron descriptive may seem hyped, but I’ve come to a much clearer realization after being a believer for thirty-five plus years that my spiritual walk and intimacy with Christ (or lack thereof) is so utterly dependent upon my determination to discipline myself to take advantage of all the means of grace, with the tenacity of an athlete on the playing field.While we are called to feed ourselves upon God’s Word, clearly left to ourselves, we can grow weary.  Being mentored regularly for twelve impactful weeks has been key to me forming an enduring life habit like none other in my many years of group bible studies, theological training and Sunday School classes.  Cosgrove is thorough covering the essentials of Lordship, Purity, Prayer, the Bible, Evangelism, the Church, Christian fellowship, being a servant and giver, as well as the fruits of the Spirit.Reading and studying on your own in itself of course has value.  But the human exercise of meeting one-to-one each week with structure from a wise leader is invaluable.  Accountability is powerful since even the most sincere of us over time tend to wane and flounder.  And even the most devoted congregant can blend in with the crowd.  I’m convinced as I ever have been that the key ingredient to building the Church is not merely highly trained pastors or dynamic new programs, but simply Christ’s call to all believers to ‘go and make disciples’, the one-on-one transparent, authentic relationship of disciples making (training) other disciples to advance the Kingdom of God.  Being discipled by someone like Ron who is so consistently passionate (knowing him for over 25 years) about living out his faith and being used by God to encourage the Body of Christ has been one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.  I strongly commend Ron’s mentoring program, but also his natural gift to personally disciple anyone in your church or community.”

2.  Russell L (Franklin, TN; 2019):
“This discipleship training program provides the opportunity to learn or relearn the meaning of following Christ as my Lord and the Christian lifestyle.  Studying  the application of Scripture and memorizing Scripture leads to a sharper focus on the personal growth of my faith journey”.

Also – “I have collected many sets of verse cards over the years but the ones from Biblical Mentoring are the only ones that come with a live person who is committed to mentoring me for my spiritual growth but mainly to training me to mentor others.  This is huge difference and benefit!”

1.  Lily X (Franklin, TN; 2019):
“I have learned so much through the discipleship training sessions taught by Pastor Ron Lively.  I was a new Christian having been baptized just prior to this discipleship & training.  The first two verses I was asked to memorize was Philippians 4:6-7 – ‘do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation pray to God…’ This was one of my life turning points.  I would like to recommend anyone start these training sessions with Pastor Lively and to transform yourself into a new life by learning about the love and life of Jesus!  Thanks to God for His amazing grace.  Amen.”

Me – Ron Lively (Franklin, TN):  I am indebted to a number of mentors such I as:  Randy Pope (Perimeter Church – Atlanta); Jim Hurley (RTS); Sid Macaulay & Hal Habecker (CMDA); Pastors Don Patterson, Jim Baird, Fred Marsh, Brister Ware & Ed Norton while we were in Jackson, MS; Skip Gray, Jim Remeur & Chuck Singletary (Navigators); Will Austin (BUV); Dave Kinsey (loyal personal friend current mentor); Gary Brittain (long- time friend/advisor/mentor, business partner & coach with Harvestline, Stream, Kynect and ACN); and Johnny Clark (loyal friend and advisor in Franklin, TN).  I am greatly indebted to Andrew Boswell, a life coach / mentor in Franklin who gave me the opportunity to “embrace and build on the past” to get me moving forward again.  Andrew helped me discern my best skills and gain a sharper focus for the future.  Lastly, working with these trainees listed below who are becoming trained mentors allows me to continue to learn and grow from them in our ongoing relationships. Biblical Mentoring is working as we are intentional about making “disciple-making disciples” (Matthew 28:19-20).