“Remember your leaders, those who spoke to you the word of God. Consider the outcome of their way of life, and imitate their faith.”
I’m struck by the grace and mercy God weaves into my life as He leads me from one city to the next. And from one mentor to the next. Today, I remember Mrs. B in high school and how she passionately shared about Jesus in small group. She loved us high schoolers so well, not one of us felt excluded. I remember Amber who first trained me in the Word and inspired me to share my faith. I watched her bring women to know Jesus; she loved me like a little sister. I remember how Katie and I used to go on long power-walks and gush about all that God was doing. She wrote me letters when I moved and continued to display her life with words for me. I remember Beth with her sweet voice praying peace and confidence into me. The gentlest of souls – she always lifted up the brokenhearted. And I remember another Beth who bounced for joy and spoke faith right into my bones. She believed Jesus for more than anyone I know.
My heritage of mentors is a testament of God’s grace and mercy. I definitely never deserved these women’s wisdom and love. But, God is good! He gives us what what we don’t deserve and what we haven’t earned — freely and because He loves us.
Some of these women I asked to hang out in their lives with, “would you be okay if I like came for dinner tonight and I was hoping to ummmmm maybe ask you a few questions and get your advice about a couple of things?”
And some of these women our relationship fell into place because of a Church program. And then one came chasing after me, but that is a rare thing!
Today, if you’re hungry for a mentor my encouragement to you is: Chin up, soldier! No seriously — chin up and look around! Who in your life do you admire, want to be like in 5,15,25 years? Go awkwardly and ask them to hang out. You don’t have to be awkward… somehow I always am. And Whala! It can be the start of a beautiful God-thing that helps to grow you into beautiful Christ-like maturity.
There is a lie that says a mentor is the key to a better you. Don’t believe it! Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life. Our mentors are only a shadow of Jesus — an example to draw us closer to the cross. There have been seasons in my life when I can’t find a mentor. I found it incredibly fun and encouraging to hunt down the women gone before:
Darlene Deibler Rose: Here is her personal account of some of her experiences as Prisoner of War. Worrrrrth the listen! She also has an AMAZING book – Evidence Not Seen.
“I have one desire now – to live a life of reckless abandon for the Lord, putting all my energy and strength into it.”
She’s written many inspiring books about her life as a missionary to the tribe that killed her husband, about her husband, and about being a woman.
Fanny Crosby: Born in 1820 she became blind as a baby and grew up to write a lot of the hymns we still sing today. Here is a link to a short biography about her and her own autobiography can be bought on Amazon.
Pheobe Palmer: You can read more about her life here.
“I now see that the error of my religious life has been a desire for signs and wonders,” she wrote. “Like Naaman, I have wanted some great thing, unwilling to rely unwaveringly on the still small voice of the Spirit, speaking through the naked Word.”
I pray today that we gain courage from the women who’ve come before us.
And that God fills our lives to pour us out for others.