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Mentoring Helps Us Thrive in Every Life Season
*a guest post by Janet Thompson*
We’ve all heard it said, “There’s a time for everything.” Or “You’re just in a season, it will pass.” Actually, it’s Scriptural—
“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens” (Ecc. 3:1).
Good and pleasant seasons sound wonderful, just what God wants for us, right? It’s so easy to think that God couldn’t possibly want what we perceive as a bad or unpleasant season for us. And yet Ecclesiastes 2-8 continues describing that God made both, and while we’re alive, we’re going to experience every season—the good and the bad—under heaven.
We try so hard to hold onto those feel-good seasons, and there’s nothing wrong with that—we should have times of joy, dancing, laughing, loving, and peace. But when the not-so-good-times roll, we need to remember that God hasn’t left us. He is walking right beside us through the mourning, weeping, uprooting, and war seasons when a spiritually seasoned mentor is so helpful to assure us that with God’s help, she made it through her tough seasons, and we will too.
A spiritually older mentor can also rejoice with a spiritually younger woman in the good seasons and help her navigate life as a Christian woman today by sharing from her own spiritual journey, as they both grow in faith together.
We’re all coming out of one season where we could mentor from that experience and going into another season where we could use a mentor.
There’s always going to be a difficult life season we want to end. Or a wonderful season we never want to end. Many life changes we have no control over, even though advertisers and the culture try to make us believe differently. They set us up to fail either way by thinking if we just drink the right cola, take the right pill, own the right car, use the right cosmetics and anti-aging products, eat the right food, reach success . . . every season of our life will be heavenly. The aging clock is going to stop and somehow God made our life to be different from everyone else’s life.
But that’s a lie and those who buy into it will never be content because everything God lists in Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 is a season that everyone will experience.
What to Do When We Don’t Like Our Life Season
We probably feel like crying, screaming, maybe yelling, getting depressed, ignoring, or trying to get out of unpleasant life seasons. If we’re honest, we’ve all been there.
Soon we realize that only one thing works: ask God how He wants us to deal with it and then listen carefully for the Holy Spirit. It’s that still small voice we hear guiding us when we cry out to God. He doesn’t want us going through any season alone, but He also doesn’t want us listening to anyone who isn’t giving us biblical wisdom. That’s why a Christian mentor is so invaluable, especially in today’s culture.
My new book, Mentoring for All Seasons: Sharing Life Experiences and God’s Faithfulness, provides help and tips for the mentor and mentee in every life season from tweens to twilight and Scripture to study together applicable to the various issues women might experience in their life season.
A mentor won’t have all the answers or the Bible memorized, but she’s willing to search God’s Word and pray together for God to help you both thrive in your current life season. Then you both reach out and mentor someone else going through something similar.
Exactly what Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 tells us we should do when we’re going through any life season! “Two are better than one because they have a good reward for their efforts. For if either falls, his companion can lift him up; but pity the one who falls without another to lift him up.”
More about Janet:
Janet Thompson is an international speaker, freelance editor, and award-winning author of 19 books. Her latest release Mentoring for All Seasons: Sharing Life Experiences and God’s Faithfulness. (September 12, 2017)
She is also the author of Forsaken God?: Remembering the Goodness of God Our Culture Has Forgotten; The Team That Jesus Built; Dear God, Why Can’t I Have a Baby?; Dear God They Say It’s Cancer; Dear God, He’s Home!; Praying for Your Prodigal Daughter; Face-to-Face Bible Study Series; and Woman to Woman Mentoring: How to Start, Grow, & Maintain a Mentoring Ministry Resources.
Visit Janet and sign up for her Monday Morning Blog and online newsletter at womantowomanmentoring.com
More about Mentoring for All Seasons:
Women often don’t think they know enough to be a mentor, or fear rejection if they ask someone to mentor them. Others don’t think they need mentoring. However, throughout the Bible, God calls spiritually younger and older women to learn from and teach one another.
Mentoring for All Seasons helps answer questions like these:
– What is mentoring?
– How do I find a mentor?
– Why does God want us to mentor one another?
– What are the blessings of mentoring?
Through true stories from mentors and mentees in life seasons from tween through death–along with the author’s personal experiences, helpful tips, Scriptures to study together, and biblical mentoring relationship examples–Mentoring for All Seasons encourages women to be intentional about sharing their life experiences and God’s faithfulness with other women.
Do you have a mentoring relationship with another believer? What has been the biggest blessing from that mentoring time together?