Thursday, February 2, 2012

Mentor Moment

Megan Stevens, Alexa Albrecht

This winter has been a winter of reunions! Reunions with who you ask? My girls!! You see God didn't give me daughters when I had my babies. Instead I was gifted with 3 wriggling, feisty, funny, and adorably sweet little boys. We had lots of clothes in blue, green, and orange - but no pink. Not even a smidgen. I know some of you out there might buy pink shirts for your boys, that's your choice, but I'm not putting my little boys in pink shirts. I don't care how popular it may be. Now that they are older, you wouldn't be able to get them in a pink shirt even if you payed them! We'll save that for the teen years when they want to 'express' themselves, I guess. Anyway, for the last 9 years that's how it's been in this house, one queen surrounded by all her princes, and it's a good life. 

Alaina Bowman

There is a way that God has allowed me to have some extra estrogen for company in my home. That has been through mentoring. If you are familiar with Silver Birch Ranch than you know it is not just a camp, the grounds are also the location of our one year Bible college, Nicloet Bible Institute. In the 8+ years we have been here, we have met over 100 college age kids. (Wow, that sounds like a lot! And that's an underestimation) Of course we can't build a relationship with all of them, but we can with some. And we have. Nearly every year, Troy and I have mentored a student, either officially or not. Some years it becomes more than one student and some years it doesn't really happen at all.  It has required us to open our home, share some food, spend some time, put others first, and grow. All good things.

Erin Lonergan
I can't begin to tell you how rewarding mentoring these young ladies has been. And how fun! It is a joy to watch them grow in their relationship with God, learn new things, change. Sometimes it's hard too. It has always been worth it. Every year. Every girl. I have laughed and sometimes cried alongside them. I have rejoiced and pleaded at the foot of God's throne for them. I have grown. I love it when they come back and visit. Absolutely LOVE it. I am so glad to be a tool God has used in their lives. So thankful.
If you had asked me when we came to SBR if I thought I would be a good mentor, I would have said no. If you ask me the next time you see me if I think I am a good mentor, I'll say no. I screw up all the time. I'm selfish, I don't pray enough, I'm not mature enough or Godly enough or any - enough's! But God is, and because I've been willing, he has chosen to use me to impact the lives of young men and women for His glory. That's what mentoring is. It's loving someone in the name of Jesus and helping them along in their spiritual journey. It's living out the truths of Gods word in front of them and asking for forgiveness when you screw it up. It's trusting God to do his thing with a very imperfect you, just because He can.
So during those times when I don't feel like I have the energy to have company, or when I don't feel like investing the emotions into a new relationship, I try and remind myself of this one thing: It's not about you Jana, It's about Him.
What about you? have you ever thought of mentoring a teen? They don't have to be in college, it could be a High Schooler, even Jr. High. You may think you have nothing to offer, you may not think anyone would think you're 'cool' enough. Me to! But guess what? Young people need adults who are willing to pour into their lives and love them like Jesus loves. And they even like it! You don't have to be perfect, you don't have to have enough - of anything! All you need is to do is be willing. Ask God to show you who, where, when. Then watch out as he uses a teen or young adult to teach you something, and have fun in the process.
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1 comment:

Dad said...

You make my heart happy! :-)