Why is it our churches still struggle with how to get women to mentor other women? Seems a topic at each leadership training we host! But read how Lorie Looney Keene is being mentored in the daily-ness of life. This makes it so doable! Encourage your women to watch for these daily opportunities to make a difference in the life of a woman.
As a seminary student and later as a seminary employee, I often heard women express a desire to be mentored by other women. Typically, they would say something like, “I wish an older lady would pour into my life.” When asked, however, if they were currently seeking to build natural relationships with women in their local church body, they would usually say no.
It seems to me that somewhere in the mist of conferences, classes and books being written and taught on the issue of mentorship, we may have inadvertently made something that is natural become to synthetic and difficult to obtain.
I admit, I do not currently have any women in my life who I can say is ‘officially’ mentoring me. I do not meet weekly with someone for coffee and Scripture. I do not have a monthly prayer partner. And, I do not have someone who devotes her time to helping me grow spiritually. I, like many of you, am currently living under the time constraints of being at home and raising children. This squeezes out time for an ‘organized or scheduled’ mentoring relationship.
However, in the midst of all this, I can honestly say that I am gleaning mentoring moments from several women in my church. From my seat in the pew I weekly see a lady who raised three children all on her own. She is a faithful attender and amazing servant to our church body. Behind me is an elderly couple who even in their latter years are obviously in love and devoted to one another in such a way that I am weekly encouraged by how they show affection. Other pews hold mothers of older children, who despite the fact that their children are out of the nursery/toddler years, they still pour into the lives of preschoolers. There is a single woman who monthly babysits my children out of the goodness of her heart because she said she wanted to give my husband and I some time alone together.
My list could go on and on. God has planted amazing women in my church body in various stages of life who weekly encourage, edify and convict me. We do not have to meet over tea; simple observance is mentorship as well.
What does the view from your pew look like? Who are the women God has placed in your church body? And how can you be ‘unofficially’ mentored by them?
Lorie Looney Keene earned both a Masters of Divinity in Christian Education and a Masters of Theology (Th.M) from Southern Seminary, where she worked for three years as The Assistant Director of Women’s Programs. Prior to working at Southern Seminary, Lorie served in Poland with the International Mission Board and has over seven years experience as an ER nurse. She is the author of Pull Up A Chair: You, Me and the Gospel of John by New Hope Publishing, as well as a contributing author to Journey Magazine. Lorie lives in Tullahoma, TN where her husband, Stephen is the Youth/Education Minister at Highland Baptist Church. She is a Sunday School teacher to High School girls, leads a weekly women’s Bible study and teaches Biology at her church’s homeschool co-op. Currently, Lorie is enjoying the role of stay at home mom to her son Elijah and daughter Emma.