What good things are mentors to train or encourage younger women to do to help them depend on God to accomplish His purpose in their lives? Last week we looked at four things older women can teach younger women. Today we will consider four more.
Scripture says, “Then they [older women] can train the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God” (Titus 2:4-5).
Be Busy at Home
Managing the home may be a forgotten art in the church. However, it makes a tremendous difference to a woman’s family as well as to God, or He wouldn’t have included it in Titus 2:5 as an area for training younger women. Women are to “manage their households” (1 Tim. 5:14). In the Greek language, this means to be the house ruler or to manage the house in such a way that the family is kept in order. In a controlled home environment the husband/wife relationship will have a better chance to thrive and grow, and the children will be more at ease.
Basic household skills can be taught by a mentor who has already been there and done that. Skills such as cooking, cleaning, ironing, sewing, planning meals, and managing time wisely are highly useful to young women. For example, scheduling nap time and picking out clothes on Saturday night for church have been invaluable suggestions to me. Laying clothes out the night before a school day also lessens anxiety in the morning. This counsel sounds simple, but what a gift it is to the woman on the go! Whether married or single, women (and their families) benefit from a well run home. Just as cups of cold water given in Jesus’ name will one day earn a reward (Matt. 10:42), so too the mundane tasks of household chores are of eternal consequence.
Being kind involves words that encourage husbands, children, friends, and strangers. It also involves actions that say “I care” to those around. Mentors find creative ways to express their love. A card, a word of encouragement, a meal, or caring for children are only a few ways to model and instill kindness. They live the command, “be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving one another, just as God also forgave you in Christ” (Eph. 4:32).
Be Subject to Their Husbands
If married, mentors can encourage mentorees to submit to their husbands. The Greek word for obedience used in the commandment for children (Eph. 6:1) and slaves (Eph. 6:5) is different from the word used for submit or subject (Eph. 5:22). This is voluntary submission—submission given willingly to a husband’s leadership. It does not suggest nor state that women are in some way inferior to men, only that they have a different role. It does say that women are to respect their husband’s role as head of the house. This kind of submission is possible only as younger women learn to obey Christ and submit to His authority. Then and only then will they see the benefits that respecting their husbands can bring.
Jesus—the ultimate mentor—chose to submit His will to the Father. When women learn to obey God by submitting themselves to their husbands, the blessing of God will rest on their homes. The home then becomes a place of security, protection, and peace where the women, under their loving husbands’ direction, can grow to their highest potentials. A wife’s submission to her husband includes all the other areas in Titus 2:4-5 that God instructs older women to teach. In loving her husband and children, in being self-controlled, pure, and kind, and in managing the affairs of her home, a woman shows her submission to her husband and to the Lord.
Live So the Word of God Will Not Be Dishonored
When older women model and teach the commands given in Titus 2:3-5, “the Word of God may not be dishonored” (NASB). This is true because the younger women who have learned these truths will be beacons to others. The world needs to see good examples passed on from one godly woman to another. Psalm 103:17-18 says,
But from eternity to eternity the Lord ’s faithful love is toward those who fear Him, and His righteousness toward the grandchildren of those who keep His covenant, who remember to observe His precepts.
To a world that is lost and dying, mentors and mentorees alike can honor God’s Word and witness to others. Now that’s evangelism!
Next Wednesday we’ll consider how to start mentoring opportunities in your church.
This article is adapted from a chapter written by Valerie Howe and found in Women Reaching Women: Beginning and Building a Growing Women’s Ministry compiled by Chris Adams.