This question continues to roll around in my mind...mentoring has been important in my life, God calls us to do it and more importantly He equips us to do it! I know I should be intentional, but I left my wonderful time with friends and returned to reality. A reality that involves 5 children who need me and a husband who does as well. Then my thoughts grew - realistically how intentional can I be about mentoring?
In my current season of life, it's not possible to sit down daily, have conversations and go deeper with women who are a step ahead or with those who are walking where I've been. Those things are important and needed, but I've been reminded mentoring is more than that.
God's used a couple of emails to show me that mentoring happens. Last week a friend closed a message with these words, "I am making a big dinner for us all. Such a happy mom I am!!!" Instantly I thought, when's the last time I said that? Honestly I'm not sure I've ever connected making a big meal with being a happy Mom. So I was convicted and encouraged to do all things as unto the Lord. (Col. 3:23)
The very next day, this same friend sent another message in an attempt to answer some questions for me. She opened the message stating she was waiting for her son and would answer the urgent question. She did, then shared he hadn't arrived so she'd keep going. The answers continued and then I read, "Here comes my boy!!" and the message ended. I read those words and God instantly had another lesson for me.
Oh friend, I hate to admit that once again I don't relate to my friend as often as I'd like (and should)...I was convicted and rightfully so as I instantly thought, how often do my kids come to me and my response is just wait a minute?? I don't even want to know the answer, but with these words God's showing me it should (and can) change.
I'm sure if I asked my friend if she set out to mentor me as she shared those words, her answer would be no. I doubt she set out to intentionally influence me to love my husband and children (Titus 2:4), but God used her words to do just that.
As time went on, He used her words for more. Like I said, I've been thinking about intentional mentoring and I'm realizing I need to be aware that mentoring happens. God uses the moments and conversations I share with others that are specific and take place because of a plan, but mentoring can, and does, happen in our everyday life. Remember what they say about raising children...more is caught than taught!
Friends, this happens when we grow up too! Today I'd love to encourage you to think about the people who speak into your life...if they are ones who are walking with the Lord and digging into His Word, listen to what they have to say - when you specifically ask them for wisdom and in the everyday conversations. God will use them to mentor you!
Secondly, if they are not ones who are walking with God in faith think about the message they are sending. Even if you are not intentionally looking to them (friends, strangers, radio, TV...) for advice and training their words are sinking in. Just a word of caution for you and for me - be aware of the message you are receiving.
Finally, think about the ones who are listening to you...those who hear your words are receiving a message, let's make sure it's one God wants us to be sending. Like my friend, let's share words that build others up, speak Truth and don't malign the Word of God. (Titus 2:5)
Today instead of wondering about how intentional I should be about mentoring, I'm focusing on the fact that it happens in the everyday, ordinary conversations that take place. I'm praying God will use that awareness to help me speak words of life and Truth! And friend I'm praying the same for you too!
Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. Ephesians 4:29