Sunday, August 31, 2008

AT THE WELL..."Sister/Sister" -a call to mentoring

A few months back, a blogging friend of mine, CHELSEY, envisioned a new ministry that would allow women to meet together and discuss topics that would thrust them into a deeper walk with the Lord much like the woman in Titus 2 that we read about in the Bible. I am so very humbled that in the prep stages of this new ministry that she would approach me and and ask if I would consider to be part of the writing team. WOW! To be grouped with the awesome ladies that are part of AT THE WELL is an unbelievable honor. They are all great women of God and are seasoned writers.

We meet together each and every Monday and discuss some awesome topics. This week I am the leading contributor and I was able to select what topic I would like to bring to the well. Immediately, I knew I wanted to address the subject of MENTORING. A subject that is near to my heart.

Y Y Y Y
SISTER/SISTER
How many times have you heard yourself say, "If only I had known then what I know now?" You may be thinking of something as simple as finding a way to stay dry when changing a diaper or something as important as how to balance a career and a family.

SISTER/SISTER is not referring to your relationship with female siblings. This is a call that I believe is placed on every Christian woman by God our Father. Somewhere along the line, I believe nearly every woman wishes she had another woman, (perhaps an older and more experienced) to help her with the twists and the turns of life.

? HAVE YOU EVER BEEN
MENTORED BY SOMEONE ?
We live in an age now where we no longer have the strong generational ties that we used to have. Think about this...

  • grown children live hundreds of miles away from their parents.
  • Older parents are residing in nursing homes.
  • Teen-age girls are raising babies.
Life is just NOT what it used to be!
Can you think back and name a special person who has molded you? who has invested in you? encouraged you? I have several friendships but when I think about the molding and the investing - I have to narrow that list down to THREE.

The first one I think of is a childhood friend. The second is a friend from my childbearing years. The third is a close friend I currently have. The mentoring friend that I would like to bring attention to is my friend Lynne. Lynne invested in me as a young mother. Lynne came into my life as a neighbor and she became someone that I looked up to. Lynne was not the kind of friend that a young 25 year old would gravitate towards. See Lynne was 12 years older than me! At the age of 37, I considered my new friend as an older woman! (oh boy that could get me in trouble!!)

The connection between us began as we shared stories of our pregnancies. She was pregnant with her first child, I with my 3rd. We shared stories of swollen feet, bad indigestion, how much weight we had gained and the anticipation of our babies arrival! During our special times together, Lynne taught me so much! She taught me how to be brave, how to bake a RICH chocolate cake, how to live on a budget and how to make important things important!

Lynne was a TITUS friend to me during those molding years. In the book of Titus, Paul is telling his younger friend Titus, who is his partner in ministry and student in the Lord, about the kind of relationship women in God's family are to have with one another...

"Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior, not malicious gossips, nor enslaved to much wine, teaching what is good, that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be dishonored." -TITUS 2:3-5

Paul is reminding Titus that Christian women should be doing things far differently as they grow older in their faith and as they learn to manage life more effectively. In the more mature years (and that does not necessarily mean AGE as it does MATURITY!), the Christian woman is to teach and encourage the younger woman.

? WHAT CHARACTERISTICS DO YOU
LOOK FOR IN A CHRISTIAN MENTOR ?

How can one become a mentoring woman like the one Paul is describing? It is NOT through sermons, but it is by the example of how she lives her life. A more mature Christian woman who has learned when to speak and when not to speak; and who reflects a genuine heart for the Lord will be a living and breathing sermon! (If neccesary use words...in other words, let your life speak for itself!)

To become a SISTER/SISTER (or a Christian mentor) is to accept the call to be a prayer warrior and a mentor.

The term "mentor" comes from the famous Homer's epic poem, THE ODYSSEY. King Odyssey is leaving to fight in the Trojan war, the King gives charge to his trusted friend, Mentor to care for his son and to take care of his household while he is away at war. In the King's absence, Mentor trained his son in all the ways that a father would train his son. Therefore when we use the word "mentor" it is referring to someone who is a trusted counselor, a guide, a tutor or a coach.

God values the "older" woman and He challenges her to share her wealth of experience. Growing older" is NOT becoming obsolete, outdated or antique!

  • Growing older is having the ability to speak about God!
  • Growing older has the abiltiy to speak about His faithfulness, His redemptive power and His willingness to provide for His children!
  • Growing older is having the ability to speak about the wisdom He gives for child rearing, homemaking and the guidelines for marriage and living!
  • An "older woman" is one who has walked with Him in the valleys, in the meadows and the mountains of life!
  • An "older woman", a godly mentor...has a lot to share with others!
At this point, you might be thinking that you do not have anything to share. You might consider yourself a simple woman. I used to think like that too, until one day I took a piece a paper out and began to write down all of the things that God has brought me thru (ie: college, working, marriage, children, etc) and before I knew it I had a LONG list of experiences!

It does NOT matter what season of life you find yourself in, each of us have experiences that God can use!!

  • You may be at the age of 80... you have MUCH to offer a 40 year old!
  • You may be at the age of 20... you have MUCH to offer a 15 year old young lady!

EVERYBODY IS "OLDER" THAN SOMEONE!

TITUS 2 IS A CLEAR AND POWERFUL CALL TO WOMEN TODAY:
  • For older women to model
  • and for younger women to learn!
? HOW DO YOU GO ABOUT TO PURSUE
A GODLY MENTORING RELATIONSHIP ?


1. BE PURPOSEFUL

GALATIANS 5:22, 23 "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law."

2. BE CREATIVE

PSALMS 51:10 "Create in me a clean heart, Oh God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me."


3. BE A LISTENER

PSALMS 41:12 "As for me, thou dost uphold me in my integrity, and Thou dost set me in Thy presence forever."

4. BE REAL

PHILIPPIANS 4:8 "Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, let your mind dwell on these things."

5. BE AVAILABLE

ISAIAH 13:4 "Follow the Lord your God and fear Him; and you shall keep His commandments, listen to His voice, serve Him, and cling to Him."

ARE YOU LOOKING FOR A MENTORING RELATIONSHIP?

I have given some simple steps to take if you desire to be a godly mentor. My advice here today AT THE WELL, is if you seek to be a mentor...JUST BE ONE!

Please leave me your comments on this subject of SISTER/SISTER and if you have a posting today on this subject...link it here. (be sure to link us to your mentoring posting and not just your blogpage!)






14 comments:

LauraLee Shaw said...

Wow, no wonder you hosted this topic. What incredible wisdom you have to share with us. I learned so much!!! I can attest to the older generation being able to make a HUGE difference on the younger. My husband's granddad lived with us for almost two years when his dad got brain cancer. I learned so much about his perseverance through WW2, frugality through the depression, and just plain ole good character and discipline. What a terrific man he was, and what a difference he made in our household with our children and especially with me. As difficult as that time was, I miss him so much. I miss Brian's grandmother too, who was really the first mother I ever had. No matter the age, though, as you point out, we can be mentored and be a mentor.

Such an important topic, and I'm so glad you brought the subject up at the well. Blessings, sister.

Chelsey said...

Laurie,
You've spoken some beautiful words of wisdom! I hope everyone can come to the well today and take a little back with them. Thank you for allowing God to use you today - you are a blessing! :)

Jenn said...

What a great topic you chose to talk about. It is one that in near to my heart. I think each and every one of us can mentor and needs to be mentored. Thanks for all the wisdom you shared.

Joyfull said...

Your post is truly a fresh drink of wisdom and grace for us at the well today. Many will come away refreshed and encouraged. Thank you for sharing. What a blessing!

DarcyLee said...

Laurie,
Thank you for your thought-provoking post! It helped me to remember all the women that have influenced me in my life and to remind me of the awesome responsibility I have in the body of Christ. We never stop learning or teaching, whether we're 18 or 88.

Laurie Ann said...

Laurie, the teaching is fantastic in this week's topic! I love it. I haven't put my post up yet, but did want to pop in and let you know how wonderful yours was. Thank you for leading us At the Well this morning. I look forward to coming back this afternoon and seeing what the other ladies had to say and posting my thoughts as well. Thank you for sharing from your heart, Laurie. So much wisdom and inspiration there!

Colored Heart said...

Hi, sister! I am so happy to be able to visit you here. I've been out for a week due to another hospital rush. Anyways, thank you for being our gracious host at our well. My jars are definitely full after stopping by. You are full of wisdom. Thanks for the cyber-mentoring. God bless you always. {hugs}

Peggy said...

WOW Laurie...Mentoring is definitely your ministry and your heart's desire!

I read this earlier than went back to find out which post you read! I thought that you read my MISSION 4 MONDAY...and you went to my PRAYER FOCUS! I was surprised that you did not link up and then I saw your Mr. Linky and I understand why but I still think you should link SISTER/SISTER mentoring...to my
MONDAY meme. You're more than welcome to come and link...@

http://mazmagi.blogspot.com/2008/08/ramadan.html

Internet Cafe had Mentoring as a Chat during the summer. If I get a chance, I will try to write on my mentor, but she's younger a year or so...and has now become an AG pastor! I miss her so much! Bless you..I hopefully will get a chance to read others that linked. Are they all Titus 2 women? I thought Titus 2 was on Tuesday! Thanks for an excellent teaching on this! A much needed ministry as you explained in our day and age.

I'm way old...so anyone need a mentor? I offered to be that to one of the Internet Chat people and she never said "yes". I tried to write and build that with her but she needs a flesh and blood mentor that can hold her and hug her! Blessings
and hoping you will consider linking!!

Regina said...

Thanks Laurie for sharing your thoughts today, it was a very good subject and your teaching was right. This is my first time joining you and I pray that you all will forgive me if I have over spoken on the subject! As a 53 year old woman, it is a senstive subject to me.

Kat said...

I am discovering though that God has been preparing me. I don't think I was ready in the past to be a Godly friend myself, or even ready for fellow woman to mentor me.

My relationship with God was hanging by a thread. I think God wanted to be my best friend first, the one I turned to, my main mentor. I think he wanted to humble me to the point that I had to rely solely on Him and not on another person. I had been relying on others and not him for too long. Well, I got sick and I found myself crying out to the Lord for help. I started reading the Bible and at long last just giving my days over him to control, finally relying on Him for all my needs. All at once I found joy in reading and studying the Bible (which had always been a chore for me before), I started really wanting go to church (not just because it was expected of me), and found great comfort in talking to the Lord. No longer was I just rattling off my list of wants to Him. I was talking to him like a friend, someone I knew. Although my mind had known He my was Savior for years, my heart finally knew him!

I had always heard other Christians talking about how close they felt to Christ. How they felt him near and could hear (not vocally, but with their hearts) Him speaking to them. I never felt that and never thought I would. I feel so blessed to have gotten to know the ultimate mentor, Jesus Christ. Now I would love to find some women at my new church to come along side me too as friends and mentors. I will be talking with God about that and I am sure in His time and when it is His will He will bring them into my life.

This was a great topic. I hope I didn't go on too long, thanks for letting me share.

God bless you all!

PS In case you are wondering I am feeling much better. I have a chronic health condition, but the Lord helps me with it and good or bad days it's good to know I have the Lord with me!

Kat

Daniel's Mom said...

You have some great insight on this subject. I know of 4 women who great helped me and I consider them mentors. Through words and actions. I love to encourage others,guess that would be a form of mentoring to huh? Thank you! You're family is lovely by the way!

JesusRulzMe said...

Hello precious sister!

Thank you for this topic today!

I had a busy morning so I wrote my post, then ran off forgetting to leave a comment and add my link! HA!

Discipleship is a mandate from God as Christ commanded us to go out into all the world, making disciples, teaching them to obey everything He has taught us and baptize them in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit!

It's all over Scripture that freely we've been given, so freely we ought to give...especially discipling those who are younger in faith!

Bless you dear sister for sharing and having a passion to spur others on toward love and good deeds.

Your sister,
Sunny

Jill said...

Wow, I loved your post as this is a topic that is dear to my heart. I always valued role models growing up, but once I became a Christian I yearned for someone to guide me. I have been blessed with the very thing - I never once expected to be friends with Leanne, but God had other plans. And as our lives unfold and the connections continue it is amazing how God uses the relationship He describes in Titus 2. I am truly blessed to play a part in it. Thanks for sharing and if you have a minute stop by and see how God continues to use our Spiritual Moms and/or Sisters in Christ to shine His light in dark times.
Blessings, Jill

sheep42 said...

Thank you so much for your topic today. I am new the blogging world. I have had 2 very strong godly women mentor me. I look for someone who can teach me how to apply the TRUTHS of Gods word into my daily life. The HS has been my greatest teacher.
I shall make a post about this soon. I have much to reflect upon. Blessings! Meri