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Mentor’s come to us in many forms. They stay with us varied lengths of time. Some stay for a short period, popping in and out almost before we realize how much they impacted us. Others influence us for decades.
We’ve all been touched by a mentor. Teachers, extended family, friends, elder church members, or someone at work has shaped our world view, and altered the way we react in it. Most mentors make us think deeper and take us to richer experiences by making us look at a familiar situation in a fresh new way.
Sharon is just such a person for me. She started out as my mother’s friend, and I first met her when I was a young girl. My mother had moved to another state, when I reached a point of crucial decision. It started from a life or death situation.
I almost died after donating a kidney to my sister, (a story for another day). After a severe allergic reaction to pain meds, I quickly slid to a volatile state. During those moments, I struggled to get air into my lungs. My oxygen fell to a dangerous level, and my blood pressure bottomed out. I knew if I fell asleep, I’d never wake up again.
But something positive also happened in that crazy place between here and the hereafter. I stopped running from God. In a Denver hospital, I vowed to serve Him the rest of my life. But I had no idea how to turn my decision into reality. The situation called for the important role of a mentor.
Though we hadn’t talked in a long time, when I called Sharon and asked her to meet me at our city park, she immediately said, “Yes.”
She listened, coached, and loved me while I searched for my place in God’s world. A place I’d run away from years before. She encouraged me when I stumbled, cheered me when I shared an exciting experience, and held me when I cried. She also fought with me when spiritual warfare waged. I learned to see others through the eyes of Jesus Christ, because Sharon saw me that way.
I wish there were more Sharon’s in the world. I often remind her of the song, Thank you for giving to the Lord. It captures my heart for a woman who sacrificed her time and energy to invest in someone like me. She helped rescue me from darkness and pulled me into the light.
These days I find myself mentoring others, following the example Sharon provided through prayer and practical applications. Most mentors fill their role in quiet, everyday, nondescript moments. And they change the world one person at a time, by giving of themselves. Without mentors, we’d all live in a much darker place.
Anita FreshFaith @ Work
Titus 2:3-5 (NIV)
Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can urge the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.
Anita Agers-Brooks is a Business Coach, Certified Personality Trainer, Productivity Specialist, Certified Team Training Facilitator, Marketing Specialist, national speaker, and author. She lives in Missouri with her husband Ricky.
She’s passionate about business with integrity, healthy relationships, and issues of identity. She travels the country teaching others from her personal experiences and research.