What do Yoda, Donald Miller, and Abraham Lincoln Have in Common?

by Sedo Elijah Ebinne

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From life on alien planets to business consulting to life in the White House, there's a thread that ties these three men and that's the influence of a mentor.

The search for a mentor, so profound, so tasking, is a path most of us have taken. Whether it’s for business, finance or just to navigate the storms of our lives, its importance cannot be overemphasized.

Usually, when we get sidetracked because of loss or failure, it becomes pertinent to remind ourselves why we started to begin with. A hero is not just someone who fights his own battles but it is someone who fiercely, fights for others as well.

Who Is Your Guide?

Yoda's story

Master Yoda: Green, humanoid, alien, and Grand Master of the Jedi Order.
Having trained more than 20,000 Jedi, a group of elite warriors, and though a miserly 67kg, he is often considered the greatest master of all time.


Because in spite of Yoda's achievements, he knew that he did not know it all. Later on in his life, he came in contact with Qui-Gon, who was somehow able to live on in the land of the living, in a state known as a force ghost.

Since Qui-Gon was the first Jedi to ever exhibit this consciousness after death, the rest of the Order couldn’t trust its authenticity. However, though uncertain, Yoda remained true in his belief, following Qui-Gon’s instructions, achieving immortality in the end.

Yoda understood that a true warrior shows off not just in brawn and strength but in discernment, in humility, and tact.

Leaning on Donald's Miller strong words, in his best-seller, “Scary Close”, the writer says- “The strongest character in a story isn’t the hero, it’s the guide- Yoda, Haymitch- who gets the hero back on track. The guide gives the hero a plan and enough confidence to enter the fight- For the guide has walked the path of the hero and has the advice and wisdom to get the hero through their troubles so they can beat the resistance.”

You see Donald had found himself in a quagmire. He couldn’t seem to hold on to any relationship.

Till he got a warm salve, a mentor in the shape of his friend, Bill, who helped him find the courage to face his fear of intimacy and risk being seen. Not only did he manage to lead a successful life, but he also met the love of his life, his wife, Betsy.

A President’s Mentor

This must have been what Abraham Lincoln had in mind when he spoke of his own influence. A few of his companions recounted him on countless occasions-and even in a public address-speak about the impact his mother had on his formation. For though she passed on when he was just eight years old, he said, “All that I am, all that I hope to be, I owe to my angel mother-blessings on her memory.”

During his time in the Oval, Abraham Lincoln wrote down the three books he considered to be of utmost importance to him:

The Bible
Bunyan's Pilgrims Progress
Aesop's Fables

And it is then no surprise that he had this famous saying-

Good boys who to their books apply
Will all be great men by and by.”

A Mentee’s Guide

Looking at the life of these three men, I’ve outlined three things that are important when looking out for a mentor

-Time-Tested Character
-Dogged Determination

For as William Shakespeare said, “Suit the action to the word, the word to the action; with this special observance, that you o'erstep not the modest of nature”

And this is essential when seeking a mentor.

So, what do Yoda, Donald, and Abraham Lincoln have in common?

Like those before them, they hold the light for those coming after.
Whatever your field of expertise, you can be sure that these three nuggets will be a very handy guide in your search for a mentor.

Lives of Great men all remind us
We can make our lives sublime
And departing leave behind us
Footprints on the sands of time.”
-Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

So go out a- seeking.


About the Author 

Sedo Elijah Ebinne

A man who loves writing more than his four dogs, is obsessed with autobiographies, bards, and comics and cannot dance to save his life. You can read more at Letters from Sedo.

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