Finding the Mentor You Long For

From Tyler: Rose and I are home from the hospital enjoying being parents to our baby boy born on Monday night. More about that next week. Today and in the coming days I’ll be featuring some great writers. Today’s post is from Natasha who actually grew up with Rose in Homer, AK. You’ll be glad you read this post from her!

I was visiting a church plant in southern New York the first time I felt God speak to me about it. My pastor-father had asked me, at the last minute, to come along and teach the children so that all the church members could hear what he wanted to share with them.

I told the story of Moses in my usual fashion, with my eyes widening and feet stomping and my voice echoing, “Let my people go!” Later I heard about how thin the walls where and how all the adults smiled at my antics.

The oldest child, a girl who was stretching wild toward womanhood, spoke to me later that night. She touched my arm and her eyes were soft with wonder as she said, “I want to be like you when I grow up.”

And God spoke into the quietness as she slipped away.

I had been praying for a mentor. For someone to come alongside me and push me forward in my walk with God. I was eighteen and I was desperate to figure out how to fit God and life and boys and college and… well, everything, together. I had been frustrated that all of the older women around me seemed so busy with their lives and I felt alone in my walk and this crazy place between childhood and adulthood.

And God said, Be the mentor you long for.

It stunned me right quiet.

The next Sunday at my church, I felt Him point out five young girls to me.

So I did something crazy. I called their parents and asked them if it would be okay if I started meeting with their daughters. It seemed like they should have laughed me off the phone. This stumbling eighteen year old, who couldn’t even get her own life figured out. But they didn’t. They thanked me.

And for the next four years, they faithfully brought their daughters to my house and left them with me for hours at a time.

We did all kinds of crazy things. We read the Bible and talked about faith while making journals and gingerbread houses and giggling over boys. We had sleepovers and shopping trips and prayed together about everything under the sun.

Years later they gladly, beautifully, stood up with me at my wedding. And suddenly, I looked around and realized that the young girls I mentored, somewhere along the way, had turned into young women.

And I wasn’t mentoring them anymore. Instead, we were mentoring each other.

It has been ten years since I first made those phone calls. And I’m ever so thankful I did. Everything I had been praying for… someone to come alongside me and push me forward in my walk with God… was fulfilled through those girls. They spurred me onward and taught me more than I ever could have taught them.

If you are wishing for a mentor, I urge you: Be the mentor you long for. (tweet this?)

Natasha Metzler lives and writes from a farm in Northern New York. She is the author of Pain Redeemed {when our deepest sorrows meet God} and a contributing writer at Allume and Kindred Grace. You can find her blogging at on facebook or on twitter.