Thursday, December 9, 2010

woman to woman (6c) getting practical: everday ideas for women encouraging women

Here's my final list of practical tips for women encouraging women. This time, they're for younger women. It's easy to complain there's no-one to mentor us, but too often, we don't notice the women God has given us. How can we seek encouragement from older women?

3. As the younger woman

  • Remember that you can learn from older women even when they're not theologically informed or trained in formal ministry. Respect older women and what they've learned and have to offer. Listen.
  • Attach yourself to older women you respect, and ask questions. Seek out women who are standing firm in their faith, who have persevered through suffering, who have a heart for evangelism, who have raised their children well, who respect their husbands, or who trust God through long-term singleness or childlessness. Write down questions to ask them.
  • Ask an older woman to mentor you, to read a book with you, or, if it's less intimidating, to pray with you. Older women may not realize what they have to offer, or may not want to push themselves forward. It may be up to you to take the initiative.
  • Find an older woman who excels in a particular kind of ministry—hospital visitation, walk-up evangelism, cooking for large gatherings—and ask if you can go along to learn from her.
  • Call an older woman and ask for advice and prayer the next time you struggle to pray, manage your time well or love those you live with.
  • When there are no older women available, seek mentoring from a distance. Read biographies of Christian women who stood firm. Read books and listen to talks by Christian women.

Any other ideas?

Thanks, Jenny, for the idea for this post.

image is from stock.xchng (I think!)


Michelle said...

a very encouraging post. Thank you

Meredith said...

What I REALLY love about this list is that it is about the younger women taking the initiative to seek out the older women as mentors - which has to result in a much more natural relationship and therefore one of more value. And younger women, even though they are the ones seeking the input, as it were, really honour and encourage older women by asking to sit at their wise feet - so both end up being blessed by the process.

Jean said...

Thanks, girls! I agree, Meredith (I can safely do this because I didn't come up with the list; it's based on one by my friend Jenny) - it's great how it teaches younger women to seek encouragement from older women. I thought the same when I read it. I wish I'd had this advice years ago!

believer333 said...

This is excellent thinking, especially in an era when older people are thought to be out of touch. In reality, it's the younger who are out of touch. We seniors have been around long enough to observe what is really going on in the world and life. :)

Everyone has something to offer. We should never discount a group of people for any reason. Difference is good. We all learn from one another's differences.

Kip Hop... It don't stop said...

I somehow stumbled across your blog and much as I'd love to take the credit for the article on leaving church, I'm afraid it was written by Simon Flinders and I only commented in the Briefing on what an excellent article it was.


Kip' Chelashaw

Jean said...

Oops! So he did, and I knew that! :) Thanks, Kip, better change it...