Women investing in younger women—it’s not just a program, it’s a command in Scripture. But why isn’t it happening in so many churches today?
- First, we are primarily around people our own age and life stage. What Sunday school class or small group do you attend? I would guess most of you are in an age/stage specific class, like a young married class (or a variation like married with children or newlyweds).
- Second, the “older” women lack confidence. When talking to the “older” women of our church I hear over and over again, “I don’t know enough to mentor!”
- Third, most women don’t have time for something new added to their to-do lists.
Titus 2:3-5 gives instructions to women in the church. The older women are to “be sober-minded, dignified, self-controlled, sound in faith, in love, and in steadfastness.” They are to teach the younger women, “what is good and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands.”
As we’ve talked this month about spiritual disciplines, I would like to make the case for mentoring as a spiritual discipline. It’s clearly commanded in Scripture, and we’re even given the curriculum! If you aren’t currently investing in younger women, let’s look at how you can get started.
In Spiritual Mothering, Susan Hunt writes, “If you are a Christian woman who is seeking to grow in the faith and to live obediently, then you are qualified for spiritual motherhood.”
You don’t have to be perfect. You don’t have to have all the answers. You just have to be willing.
Mentoring isn’t another thing on your to-do list. It is very natural. In fact, the primary objective is to be natural. You become friends. The “younger” woman begins to ask questions. The “older” woman finds more and more to share. Naturally, they find themselves covering all the topics Paul lists in Titus 2:3-5.
For example, one Sunday after church, I was talking to a couple who are getting married this summer. I mentioned I had started shopping once every two weeks for groceries instead of every week in an effort to save money. She said, “Oh, I hope I can do that too! I want to plan menus and cook ahead and try new recipes!” From that very natural conversation, I now have the opportunity to mentor her. Next time I’m menu planning, coupon cutting, and grocery shopping, I’ll see if she wants to come over and see what works for me!
Mentoring is just that easy. So, how do you start? Seek out younger women. Pray about opportunities to meet and connect with younger women and God will provide. He wants you to obey the command to “teach younger women …” Is there a newlywed who teaches your son’s Sunday School class and you always have fun talking when you pick him up? Do you know a girl in the college ministry who has the same major you had? Talk to her! Chances are, she wants to get to know you too. Let the relationship develop naturally!
1 Thessalonians 5:11 says, “Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.” Mentoring is an important part of life as a Christian, and it is how God designed women’s ministry! Are you ready to be a mentor?
If you are interested in the topics covered in Titus 2:3-5, I recommend the following resources:
Becoming a Titus Two Woman by Martha Peace
Spiritual Mothering by Susan Hunt
Feminine Appeal by Carolyn Mahaney
A Woman after God’s Own Heart by Elizabeth George
To strengthen yourself in specific areas, I recommend these resources:
Women Helping Women by Fitzpatrick and Cornish
Peacemaker books by Ken Sande
When People Are Big and God Is Small by Edward Welch
Marriage and Family-
The Excellent Wife by Martha Peace
Sacred Marriage by Gary Thomas
Give Them Grace by Elyse M. Fitzpatrick and Jessica Thompson