She called me her mentor tonight. Fear immediately seized me as I sat frozen while replaying the word in my head. Mentor, mentor, mentor. The moments where I failed to model the character of Christ flickered in my mind over and over again as one memory after another, all of which were stacked up against me like a rap sheet called out by a judge before a criminal, danced through my brain.
If you have ever looked to me as a mentor or “the older woman” in your life, then you will know how transparent I am about my shortcomings. No, I don’t mean my dirty kitchen. When I say shortcomings, I don’t mean you showing up to my home and witnessing a disheveled mess because I refused to bathe for a few days. What I mean by shortcomings is my utter failure to meet the standard of perfect spiritual holiness. I mean, you will see my squaller of moral failure for what it is: SIN. Why do I invite you into this? There is a way in which witnessing someone’s mess keeps you from making the same mess. It serves as a sort of warning to not let sin rule over you in specific areas. I don’t want you to worship my perceived life. I don’t want to expect you to worship me and my seemingly hyper spiritual walk with God. That just isn’t reality. There is nothing good that comes out of the type of relationships where women are welcomed into perfectly spotless lives of other women.
What I do want you to see is a kind of gentleness like no other which leads me to repentance. I want you to see the humility he shapes in me as he strips me of creature comforts. My hope is when you call me “mentor”, or the “older woman”, you will see the gospel lived out in tangible ways. And as I learn obedience to God’s Word, then I pray I will have the opportunity to teach you to be highly obedient to it as well. When the “older woman” relationship is done this way, Christ is magnified.. not the mentor. Not the program. CHRIST.
If you’re hungry to go deep with Jesus, no matter what it takes, I’ll welcome you into my life. I’ll walk with you in yours. Together we will commit to loving one another by reading, speaking, and consuming God’s Word together. I will be intentional with our relationship. I will cry and rejoice with you in all of life’s occasions. You will become my family. It won’t be pretty and instagrammable. It will take work. But, I’m in it for the long haul. Good, bad, ugly.