We’re continuing our series with more of the information that came out of the Organic Mentoring Conference panel discussions. Each monthly update addresses the millennials’ answers to one of the panel questions (as provided by Sue in her book).
The panelists range in age from 21 to 34. All are Bible-believing Christians who love God and are actively seeking Him in their daily lives.
Question: If you’re mentored by an older woman, what would make it work well, and conversely, what might hurt the relationship?
K: When I was in college I got mentored by a very, very sweet lady and one of the things I loved about our meetings was I would talk about this problem and this problem and this grade and this boy and you know, all of these things, and she would listen and listen and listen and then she would be like “let me pray for you” and then she would pray for everything I just talked about. And I was like, “I don’t even remember talking about half of that stuff.” I was just dumping. And she was somehow … she wasn’t writing it down … she was just remembering and praying it out to God and that spoke so much to me that she was truly listening. She wasn’t just going “wow, she’s got a lot of drama.” She was really listening and that was huge for me.
A: I would say something that kind of encompasses what she just said, but just someone who would understand my perspective and I think oftentimes … my mother’s a wonderful, loving woman, but sometimes the disagreements we have are because she doesn’t see from my perspective and I don’t see from hers. And I think that that is so important in a mentoring relationship, that you allow yourself to try to put yourself in the other shoes, the shoes of the other person, rather than saying, “well when I was a mom, my kids never talked to me like that or ever behaved that way.” Because you don’t even need to say that for someone to know they’re judging you. But just understanding that you’re not raising your children that day in those shoes and so everything is going to be different. So I think that that is both the benefit and can be the hurt, depending on how the mentor approaches her supportive role.
B: Something from the mentors I have now and the mentors I have had is the ability to go with what that person wants in that moment. Cause there have been times when I’ve gone to my mentors and I really need somebody to give me advice because I have no idea what I’m doing and I’m very lost and I really, really just need somebody who knows a lot more than I do to just give me an answer on one thing. It’s all I need. And if I say “hey, I just need you to answer this one question,” they would just answer that one question for me. They wouldn’t try to solve my whole life. They’re just trying to answer that one question for me. And if I go to their office and I’m like “hey, I’m going through a lot and I don’t want to talk about it. Can we just talk about, like, your classes that you’re teaching?” Then they just tell me about the classes that they’re teaching. And just being what I needed them to be to me in that moment has been really important to me and it’s been what really helped me get through college and just keep trying. A lot of the time it is hard to keep trying but it helps you to remember that there are people who care that you’re trying.
I hope that the insights of these millennials are helping you as you engage with the next generation!
Thank you again for your faithful prayers and your partnership in this important ministry!
Keep hoping. Keep praying. Keep loving.
Kristi, for WeConnect