Save yourself some trouble, get a mentor.

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“I don’t want to see you crippled by insecurity like I was for so many years. It really affected our marriage.”
I sat across the table from one of my mentor’s at Tim Horton’s, drinking my coffee and dancing around the idea of looking in the mirror to examine my own pain.

She had just opened up her heart, because she wanted to see me overcome a hurdle much faster than she did.

She saw the dreams in my heart, and believed in them. Yet she also looked at where I was at as an individual and challenged me to work on my deeper issues so I could be successful later on.

I have had many mentors in my life, a couple who stick out as ones who have poured their heart and soul into me.

If I hadn’t allowed someone into my life to share their experiences and challenge my own, there is no way I would be where I am today.

Mentoring isn’t just for business people or rising leaders. Mentoring can be life-changing for every person.

Here are three reasons YOU need a mentor.

1. You benefit from someone else’s mistakes. There is no better way to avoid the biggest mistakes that can set us back then by having someone share those mistakes with you.

My husband and I have avoided some painful situations because our mentors imparted to us the importance of coming into agreement through prayer. They had to learn it the hard way, we didn’t.

A mentor – someone whose hindsight can become your foresight. – Anonymous

2. You will experience expedited growth. Whatever area you feel stuck in, an outside person is going to be able to see road blocks. I have asked many older moms why I feel so frustrated sometimes with where I am at. More often than not they share with me that they can tell I’m probably letting my priorities get out of whack.

I can receive in a moment what it took some of them years to learn.

Pride leads to conflict, those who take advice are wise. 

Proverbs 13:10

3. You will help others sooner. Freely you receive, freely you give. As you learn and grow at a faster rate through the blessing of mentoring, you are then compelled to share with others and enter a mentoring relationship with them.

This moving statement by Edward Everett Hale will reflect the passion in your heart to give what you have received.

I am only one, but I am one. I can’t do everything, but I can do something. And what I can do, I ought to do. And what I ought to do, by the Grace of God, I shall do.

As you receive mentoring, and then give the gift of mentorship, you’ll be hit with the boomerang of blessing.

Good parenting does not equal good kids.

I can tell a good recipe when I see one. There are components to it that just tell me it’s going to work out. If I’m baking, I feel very confident that it’s going to be delicious if it calls for real butter, sugar and vanilla. Those three things already tell me it’s a winner.

But there are a lot of situations where following a list of instructions and using quality ingredients cannot guarantee results. Diets seem like a great example. What works for one body, often won’t for another.

In parenting, we have been talking about this a lot a we decide how we are going to raise our kids. There are many how-to’s, but no guarantees.

Some of the people I look to as great parents, have kids that seem to have “not turned out.” Or in one family you can have a variety of turns outs, each having been reared the same way.

Scary.

Actually this terrifies me. The reality is no matter how great a job I do at parenting the results are out of my control.

This morning at our church’s parenting class the speaker summed up what I had been trying to formulate into words over the past months.

“We parent well out of integrity, not for guaranteed results.”

The fact is, I have to parent the way I believe is right purely out of deep love and commitment to Jesus Christ. If I manage to serve him faithfully through the process, than I have succeeded.

Whether my kids choose to then be followers of Christ and positive contributors to society, is up to them.

Work willingly at whatever you do, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people.

Colossians 3:23

Whenever I manage to embrace the mindset that I’m parenting my kids for the Lord, I do so much better.

I stop owning results and taking responsibility for their behaviour. I can accept the fact that my kids are choosing to act out of control, but I don’t have to respond out of control, because of my love for Jesus.

I hope and pray that my children will make positive decisions and choose to live for God, but with no guarantees in any method of parenting, I make my peace with God, doing what I believe is right out of honour to him.

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photo found here

You’re Gonna Miss This

Nine days out of ten I’m barely making it to bedtime. Things have felt really challenging with the kids for, well, I guess a year. We just celebrated Amayah’s first birthday, which felt like more of a celebration that we actually lived through the first year of her life.

Seems like the struggle of parenthood is outweighing the joys. Everyday is a constant battle of wills.

And we’re expecting again, and the thought of another baby can send my anxiety through the roof when the days feel extra hard.

Too often we have already stopped by the emergency room, destroyed an expensive item, shattered one of my willow tree angels and had a good many tantrums, all before 8 a.m.

This evening my son ran out of the house in his socks and no jacket, and got in the car.

I was furious. I had already told him what felt like a million times to get his boots on and find a rain coat.

Baby girl started screaming, and I felt exasperated.

Then my husband started singing “you’re gonna miss this.”

That really irritated me. No I’m not going to miss kids who scream and don’t listen.

Then he stopped and told me to look out the window. There was our son sitting in the drivers seat, dreaming he was out on the open road.

Yeah I guess, I’ll miss that sight, I resigned.

We got in the car and listened to that song as our kids screamed all the way across town (they hate the car), and both got chocked up because honestly…that song is our life.

We’ve had a lot of things happen in our almost four years of marriage, and I’ve said many times I hope it slows down. 1939997_10153990531225431_461366503975315836_n

It’s moments like those when things do slow down, for a second, and you remember not to wish away this stage, because we already miss the last one.

And I really am thankful for my kids. Including the bean in my belly.