Monday, February 6, 2017

A Heart For Mentoring


I had a mentor/friend in my late teens and early twenties, who walked alongside me through life and encouraged me in my walk with the Lord.  I loved to spend time with her with no real agenda - we didn't formally study the Bible or anything like that.  We just talked and shared life and spoke naturally of the Lord, and how His Word was impacting our lives.  She was older than me by about 10 years, was married and had children.  She was busy, but I've never forgotten her heart for ME, and how she made time weekly for us to get together.

I've gone on to follow this pattern, with teenagers, or young moms, and my own children - my daughters especially.  A group especially on my heart are home educating moms.  They have taken on a task to not only educate their children, and if they are wise, to disciple their children.



I write for our state home education magazine put out by the Coalition of Homeschoolers Across Pennsylvania (CHAP).  This quarter I wrote about mentoring and its importance, and I thought I'd share it here with you.  I've written it for homeschool moms but it can apply to all of us as women to come alongside younger women to encourage them.




                     A Challenge For Experienced Homeschool Moms                    



I recently became a part of an online homeschool moms group. I’m not sure why I requested to 

join, since I don’t normally do these kinds of things. I have a lot of homeschool experience (I’ve 

been home educating my children for nearly 23 years), and I am comfortable in the way we 

homeschool. I guess you could say that I am confident in my choices. I also belong to a really 

great co-op that has worked hard at encouraging one another being key!


Imagine my great surprise then, when first day, first thing I read is ‘here is a your chance to post 

a rant.”  Wow!  There were many comments and all of them rather ugly. I get that 

once in a while we need a listening ear to express frustration. However I am certain that a public 

forum is not the place for this to happen. Once words leave your mouth, or you hit send on your 

keyboard, you cannot get them back.


My heart was grieved as I read some of the things these women said about their kids, 

husbands, in laws. I KNOW I don’t know their situations, or their frustrations, but that is kind of 

my point. In these days where we all can post our ‘opinions’ about every little thing, I was sad to 

see it playing out on an online homeschool forum. Would I really want my mom to post publicly 

that I had been really annoying and a bother to her for the whole world to read? I can tell you 

the answer is NO, and I know that my kids would feel the same way.


I began to wonder if these women had any help in their day to day lives, from friends or 

extended family. I wondered if anyone had a mentor, someone who’d been through the trenches 

of parenting and home educating. I have a heart for mentoring women, especially 

homeschooling moms, but I wonder sometimes if many home educators, when they finish with 

their last child, ‘retire’ so to speak. Do any stick around home educating circles to be that voice 

of encouragement, or that shoulder to cry on? 


I will be done with my last child in about six years. My plan is to stay involved with homeschool 

parents, to continue to be a part of a moms group. May I encourage you to do the same, Moms?  

We know we don’t know everything, but our years of experience count, and just wanting to 

encourage and cheerlead these younger moms on is of great value!


These women in the online group needed someone in their real life to say, “I know, I

understand, it will be okay.” They need someone to be their cheerleader, to remind them that 

it is a hard job somedays, but it is of eternal value, because your children are made in the image

of God and are of great worth to Him. The need know there is someone who will listen, and

care.  Frankly, some moms need to know that they will get through these hard days and see

fruit. It will happen!


My deep concern for the things I read that day, are that these moms are building resentment 

toward their children. They need to be reminded to seek God for the answers to our loving 

challenging children. He made them and knows them, and knows what they need.


Can I challenge you moms who are nearing the end of your homeschool days, to look around 

you at the young moms just starting or those who have kids getting a bit older, and walk along 

side them? They need you whether they know it or not.


Let’s remember to pray for homeschooling moms. Pray that they will follow God in the path He 

has for them. That they will love their children, that their husbands will encourage them in their 

work as moms and teachers in the home, and that their children will be a delight to them. Let’s 

also ask God to give us a mom to mentor and encourage.  It will make all the difference in the 


success of their homeschools.


4 comments:

  1. Thanks for this! I am gonna share it with my Step-daughter! She home-schools my little Grandchildren! Have a blessed day dear friend, HUGS!

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  2. So true. I am not a homeschooling mom, but I do mentor a teenager and volunteer with an 8 year old with learning difficulties. The important thing is to take the time and to listen and to not judge. I realize I could do much more, there is just so much need in this world. I have also noticed that I am gaining the most from taking the time:) Thanks for the post.

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  3. Hello Mrs. Rabe,

    What a wonderful post. I am starting a Media Break tomorrow and I am glad that I stopped by here because this is something I have been praying about. I have been having a stirring in regards to this very topic. I want to be mentored (I do have one) and I also want to begin mentoring as well.

    I find one of the hardest things young moms or new moms to HS is a lack of Titus Women rising to the call to mentor. I have had a hard time finding mentors and keeping them due to their lack of time or passion. It is really sad. God has blessed me with seasonal mentors but I would have loved to have had a life long one. One of the biggest complaints I hear from both sides is the older women feel they have done their job and they don't have time and then I hear the younger women won't make time to be mentored.

    Blessings on your ministry it truly is a wonderful thing.

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  4. I hear your heart in this, Deanna! When we began home educating, a sweet woman only a few years older than I (some of her children were my children's ages) was a wealth of encouragement. Her help was invaluable, both to me and to other homeschooling moms.

    I, too, desire to be that kind of encourager to other moms, but sometimes wonder how and when.

    ReplyDelete

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