Living Life Together: It’s a Balancing Act

Editor’s note: This month at Revive Our Hearts our focus is relationships, and because we believe that the instruction given in Titus 2:3–5 is for every woman, mentoring relationships are some of our favorite relationships to talk about! We’re taking this week on the blog to revisit a favorite series of articles by Mindy Kroesche that will help you answer the question, “I know I should be mentoring someone. Now what?” And since every woman is an “older woman” to someone, if you’re a woman reading these words, this series is for you! Perhaps the idea of mentoring is new to you: if so, you may want to watch Nancy’s message “A Woman Adorned and Adorning,” in which she unpacks the idea of mentoring as found in Titus 2. 

In the same way, older women are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers, not slaves to excessive drinking. They are to teach what is good, so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands and to love their children,to be self-controlled, pure, workers at home, kind, and in submission to their husbands, so that God’s word will not be slandered. 

—Titus 2:3–5

Let’s face it, life can be pretty crazy with your normal responsibilities. How are you supposed to find time to invest in one more person and balance it with your family, work, and everything else you have going on?

A good idea before starting a Titus 2 relationship is to establish your list of priorities—God first, your family second, and everything else after that. When you schedule a time to meet with someone you’re mentoring, make it a time that honors your top priorities and won’t conflict with them.

However, also be ready to be flexible if the need arises. It’s not easy, but try to intentionally keep some white space on your calendar. Ministry rarely happens in scheduled blocks, right? You have to maintain some margin so you can step in and serve, encourage, and pray when life demands it.

One way to live life together is to invite your friend to join you in your day-to-day activities. For instance, you could meet at your home while you make dinner, bring her along when you go grocery shopping, or even meet while your kids are at a church activity, sports practice, or music lessons.

If you just can’t figure out a good time to meet, offer your “busy” life to God and allow Him to create the space. Pray with the confidence that He will enable you to fulfill this beautiful calling in your life.

In the end, it’s really not up to you to do anything but simply be a friend in the midst of daily life.

Here are a few suggestions for connecting:

  • Meet early on Saturday mornings before your family is up.
  • Use texts, phone calls, or social media as a way to connect and communicate.
  • If your church has more than one service, meet during the opposite of the one you attend. Or meet before or after your church services while your spouse can watch the children.

It’s Not All Rainbows and Unicorns

A mentoring relationship is designed to be a close one. You and your friend share your struggles, your fears, your successes . . . you share your hearts. And since you are there to provide perspective from your own life, it’s normal for her to look to you for wisdom. But you’re not the first place she should go when she makes decisions—her dependence needs to be foremost on God. So make sure you encourage her to go to Him first rather than running to you for advice.

Another common danger can be when your friend becomes too attached and possessive of your relationship. It’s important to encourage her to be part of the larger community at her church and develop relationships with other women who can be a support network. It also helps to set some friendly boundaries about your availability from the beginning.

On the other hand, sometimes women enter this type of relationship excited and gung ho, but soon lose steam. If someone frequently stands you up for meetings, doesn’t follow up on assignments, or gives continual excuses as to why she can’t do something you agreed upon, it might be time for an honest talk. Suggest that you pause your mentoring friendship until a better time or decide to meet whenever needs arise. Don’t continue to “chase” someone who is difficult to connect with; instead pursue a relationship with the women God puts in your path.

Sometimes you might sense that your friend is withdrawing from you. Pray through the situation, and seek God’s guidance. It’s possible you need to let go, give her the space she needs, and trust the Lord with her life.

Other Challenges to Watch For

Make sure you’re not looking at your friend as a project but as someone to simply love and invest in. If the woman you’re meeting with doesn’t feel like enough is happening, make sure she doesn’t have unrealistic expectations. It can be easy for both of you to get caught up in your individual lives and stop reaching out. If that’s the case, try to reconnect through a text, phone call, or a note.

Mentoring sometimes involves messy relationships, but it’s worth the risk! God is working in our midst and redeeming our lives for His glory. As God’s priorities become our priorities, we can fulfill our Titus 2 calling. Let’s not lose sight of this reality: to welcome, serve, and extend God’s grace to all people—and especially those you’re discipling—is to reflect the heart of Jesus to a world starved for beauty. What could be more lovely than that?

Let ROH be your Relationship HQ! Valentine’s Day comes around just once a year, but the truth is that you have a variety of relationships that need attention all year long! That’s why Revive Our Hearts will be here during the whole month of February to cheer you on as you ask God to work through you as a friend, a mother, a sister, a wife, a daughter, a coworker, and more.  

Revive Our Hearts is your one-stop shop for up-to-date relationship resources built on the timeless, trustworthy Word of God. Stop by and browse our relationship resource collections today!

About the Author

Mindy Kroesche

Mindy Kroesche

Mindy Kroesche is a stay-at-home mom who works part-time for Revive Our Hearts on a remote basis. She has degrees in journalism and French and has worked in ministry for over twenty years. Mindy and her husband, Jon, make their … read more …

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