It sounds beautiful, doesn’t it?
Kind of rosy and organized even, like it might involve lists or progress reports perhaps?
It’s much more fluid and personal than that...
Elements of mentorship can include moving boxes, installing a shower head, and greeting each other at the grocery store. It’s relationship building, and it usually happens just outside of one’s comfort zone. Volunteer Bev Friesen shared a bit about how one of her Outreach-related mentorship connections has looked with one young mom.
“Our life group wanted to help someone out,” she said, “and Irene suggested connecting with this young mom.”
They would talk on the phone, via social media, or in passing at the mall. Bev would listen for needs she could help meet or pray about. If the mom needed groceries, Bev and her life group would buy groceries. If she needed a shower head, they bought and installed it. Even when the mom needed help moving, Bev’s life group rallied to help.
“As I stayed connected with her, she shared more and more about her story.”
These demonstrations of love were not lost on the young mom. In times of trouble, she would withdraw, but when it became too much and she was ready for a change, she would again reach out to Bev for help. Not unlike the father in the parable of the prodigal son, Bev prayed and waited each time for the young mom to return again – to faith, community, help, and truth.
The struggles continue, but so does the relationship and prayer. And that’s the secret of mentorship. It’s not a destination.
There is no arriving when one cultivates relationship or grows in faith.
Growth, with all its starts and spurts, is a process that involves investment, attentiveness, and a whole lot of patience, hope and love.
“Three things will last forever - faith, hope and love - and the greatest of these is love.”
1 Corinthians 13:13