Friday, November 25, 2005

Women of Hope Mini-Retreat

Tomorrow marks another pilgrimmage to the Leblanc's farm for an afternoon of connection, relaxation and bonding for the women of CoHo.

One of the blessings of an intergenerational group is the potential for formal and informal mentoring that can take place.

God’s light shines through our humanity, and despite our many shortcomings others are drawn to the expression of love in our life. Our imperfections can be awesomely overshadowed by God’s light as we open up our lives one to another. That is what the heart of mentoring is all about.

Mentors are created by God to offer safe, grace-filled, accepting places. In other words, no one goes to a shark to be comforted.

In David Benner’s book, Sacred Companions, there are five gifts mentors offer to mentees:

Gift # 1 Hospitality: A mentor makes welcoming space in her life for others.

Gift #2 Safety and Love: A mentor is a soul friend who offers relationship without the fear of criticism or ridicule.

Gift #3 Modeling: A mentor shares the “how’s” of life so others can emulate her and find their own way.

Gift #4 Coaching/Guiding: A mentor gives information on how life works.

Gift #5 God Awareness: A mentor helps others see God’s activity in their lives.
“A spiritual companion helps a friend to see herself as God sees her. What is God saying to this life?” David Benner

All of us should seek what Robert Clinton calls a 'mentoring constellation'. We need to have a trusted individual or two who is an upward mentor that we can seek guidance from.

We also need peer mentors who help us fulfill the idea of Proverbs 27:17, "As iron sharpens iron, a friend sharpens a friend."

Thirdly we need downward mentors that we pour ourselves into, helping them to see where God is at work in the seemingly unrelated details of their life.

We ourselves cannot experience the fullness of life that Jesus promised if we won't live the life He offers. That is a life full of community and relationships, given to mentoring others and receiving instruction from those more mature.

My own two upward mentors, Jim and Glen, are an incredible blessing to me. We meet bi-weekly and monthly, respectively, to discuss matters of the soul and everyday life. I don't know where I'd be without those portals of growth.

Who is in your mentoring constellation?

1 John 4:11-12
Dear friends, since God loved us that much, we surely ought to love each other. No one has ever seen God. But if we love each other, God lives in us, and his love has been brought to full expression through us.


Blogger Rowland Croucher said...

Hi my friend,

I stumbled across your 'Blog by accident.

What a beauty!

I've written a book on men's and women's stuff (published by HarperCollins) - a lot of it is on our website -

I'll be back!

PS. I borrowed your article on Peter Drucker: hope you don't mind.

Rowland Croucher

4:35 PM  

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