This is last article in a series on mentoring postmodern women, a topic of discussion at XChange, a leadership event focused on conversations around the table with women’s ministry leaders of all generations. Please read the previous articles in this series: Part One, Part Two, and Part Three.
We conclude this series, (although not this topic of discussion!) by considering how we can intentionally mentor those coming along behind us. Here are the responses from women’s ministry leaders of different life stages:
“I will …
- Intentionally look for a younger person to invest in.
- Understand that women are watching me (as a pastor’s wife), and I need to be available.
- Focus on needs or experiences we have in common.
- Respond when a crisis arises.
- Mentor my children presently.
- Mentor others the same way I’m mentored.
- Begin with Bible study and prayer with other women.
- Mentor and train women in leadership at church.
- Make sure I am available.
- Seek both a believer and a non-believer to mentor.
- Make sure I mentor someone because I know what it’s like not to be mentored.
- Start with prayer and conversation with a woman.
- Equip younger women to do what I do (at church, in ministry, at work, as a parent, etc.).
- Take advantage of “on-the-job training” — as I serve I will take someone with me.
- Make sure not to lose sight of the mentees relationship with God, helping them cultivate a relationship with Him and not discipling on my own power. And not allowing a mentor to take the place of God in a mentees life.
- Discern if they are serious about growth and not just being spoon fed forever. Watch for those who are hungry to grow in their relationships with Christ.
- Not allow our relationship to just involve dumping emotions, but connect for a specific purpose.
- Affirm younger women’s questions and direct them to God’s Word for answers.
- Constantly evaluate my involvement as a mentor, recognizing where my mentee is currently and helping her move to where God wants her to be.
- Start with Bible study activities with girls.
- Not judge; I will love her and encourage her to walk with Christ.
How would you answer? What is your plan to intentionally mentor younger women in your ministry and church? Share your ideas with us.
Mentoring Resources: Mentor: How Along-the-Way Mentorship Will Change Your Life is a six-part Bible study from Dr. Chuck Lawless that explores the life-transforming process of a mentoring relationship. Also, Transformed Lives: Taking Women’s Ministry to the Next Level and Women Reaching Women: Beginning and Building a Growing Women’s Ministry include information on mentoring relationships.