Revive Our Hearts Podcast

Who’s Mentoring You?

Leslie Basham: If you’re wondering how to start a mentoring relationship, don’t stress about it too much! Here’s Missy Babcock.

Missy Babcock: The mentoring part just kind of grows organically, in that you start asking the questions. You start opening up your heart; you start telling your secrets. I think that women are looking for that. I think we need our girlfriends!

Leslie: This is Revive Our Hearts with Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth, author of Adorned, for July 9, 2019.

Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth: God made us as humans with an innate need to connect. We’re social creatures. Poet John Donne wrote in 1624: “No man is an island.” We affect one another’s lives. I think God made us as women with a built-in need to connect with other women. That’s what we’re talking about today.

We’re listening to a conversation between my longtime friend, Dannah Gresh, and some friends of hers from Dannah’s hometown of State College, Pennsylvania. As you listen, ask yourself, “Who is a younger woman that I could be investing in?” or “Who is an older woman in my life that I could learn from?” Let’s listen together. Here’s Dannah.

Dannah Gresh: Today we are joined once again by my mother Kay Barker, who’s currently hosting a Bible study featuring Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth’s book Adorned, based on Titus 2. Joining with us today are two women who have been very special in her life as they’ve been studying this book because . . . you’ve sort of started mentoring these two ladies, haven’t you, Mom?

Kay Barker: I have. I’m not sure “mentoring” is the word, because we have such a fun time. We have a good friendship, but you might call it mentoring.

Dannah: So today we’re joined, first, by Missy Babcock. Missy is married to Ed, who has served as an elder in their local church. Together they have three young adult children, one grandchild, and one beautiful one on the way! She works part-time in retail—I think just for the joy of it! 

Missy Babcock: Absolutely!

Dannah: Yes, absolutely! Who wouldn’t, right? And also for the discount of it, probably.

Missy: Yes!

Dannah: And she volunteers a lot in her local church. She is the woman responsible for founding the Soup for the Soul Bible Study, a weekly local Bible study for women in her community, that is currently meeting in my mom’s home.

Missy: Yes, I am.

Dannah: What made you start the Bible study?

Missy: Oh, that’s a story! It dates back to probably a year or two after we arrived in State College. We arrived in 2009 and immediately started going to the State College Alliance Church. I was looking specifically for a group of women my age to fellowship with and do a Bible study with.

Dannah: There it is again, right? We’re always looking for women our age, aren’t we?

Missy: Absolutely! But God had something different for me. So I said, “Lord, what is it that you have for me? What is it that You want me to do?” I had been involved in the children’s ministry in past churches, but again, it was because my children were there, and they were grown. They were in college now and off on their own, some of them.

Dannah: My mom talked yesterday about facing this temptation of, “I’m done! I just want to be with women my age.” Were you facing a little bit of that temptation as well?

Missy: Absolutely! I was that woman; I was that woman that was checking out, as you said. I was the one who was saying, “There’s nothing here for me anymore. I’ve done it all. I’ve experienced the children’s ministry; I’ve experienced the MOPS program.” All of the things that I did as a young mom all of the sudden became: “Now what do I do?” So I asked God.

Dannah: Good for you!

Missy: And He answered me, as He always does, in a way that I could hear Him, and it was very clear. He said, “I want you to start a Bible study for women.” 

And I’m like, “Well, how’s that going to work!? Because I don’t want to have to be responsible for childcare. I don’t know what night we would possibly have this, or should we have it during the day (because I have a part-time job)?”

I was just asking so many questions, and God said to me: “Have it at night over dinner. The women need to eat and so do you. Make it simple. Make it soup and make it bread and they will come.” And they did! It has grown tremendously over the years under the leadership of Elaine Savage.

Dannah: So you get together regularly, and there are, what, a few women assigned to bring the soup . . . or does that magically appear?

Missy: Yes, we assign four women (depending on the tally of women that are coming) to bring soup, and someone brings bread and someone brings a dessert. For the first hour we have fellowship and food—which is exactly what God’s dream was for this. It wasn’t mine.

Dannah: So would you say, then, out of that obedience to the Lord you began being an “older woman” in the lives of some of the women in this new church that you were just joining?

Missy: I did, because when I first started the sign-up for the Soup for the Soul at a women’s ministry event, I was pretty much trying to figure out, “Which women should I invite?” And God shut that door very quickly and said, “I will invite the women.” And it became a multigenerational Bible study because—again—it was His plan and His dream. He just gave it to me to get started. Those who are carrying it on have done a tremendous job with the dream!

Dannah: And so here we are. Is it eight years now that it’s been going on, Soup for the Soul?

Missy: Roughly, yes.

Dannah: And one of the younger women in the study is also with us today. Her name is Kelly Rider. She’s married to Chiz. He’s an incredible trumpet player who tours the United States, leading congregations in worship. Kelly, you manage Chiz’s concert tour from your home, and you have four teenage children. Welcome to Revive Our Hearts, Kelly. We’re so glad to have you!

Kelly Rider: Thank you! It’s good to be here.

Dannah: How did you get involved in Soup for the Soul? What was your entry point?

Kelly: Well, I was looking for a Bible study to join, and it seemed that every time I wanted to join one they were already halfway through or three-quarters of the way through. I kind of wanted to be at the beginning and not jump in halfway through.

So I was talking with a lady at church and she said, “Hey, we’re getting ready to start; it’s not too late! We’re starting this week. Go ahead and order your book, and let’s get started!”

Dannah: Was that this particular Soup for the Soul? 

Kelly: Yes, this is my first Soup for the Soul.

Dannah: So the book you ordered was Adorned, by Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth. And the neat thing—and the reason that I’ve chosen the two of you to be here today—is because yesterday on Revive Our Hearts we talked about how my mother, Kay Barker, was feeling like, “You know what? I just want to be with women my own age.” 

And then she obeyed the Lord, opened her home to host Soup for the Soul this year, and host the Bible study of Adorned. Out of that obedience was birthed these beautiful friendships with you two ladies! I’m going to start with you, Missy. 

How did it come about that your relationship with my mom, Kay Barker, went from just two ladies that are going to church together to something more fulfilling and soul-feeding?

Missy: Well, actually, our relationship started back in 2011, when we first started looking into building a new home. We were introduced to Kay and Dan because they had just built a home.

Dannah: They had just finished theirs.

Missy: Yes, and they invited us into their home and let us walk around and see the beauty of it and the craftsmanship of it.

Dannah: They were going to share with you their building “life hacks,” is that right?

Missy: Exactly! But very quickly, Kay and I just connected. It was almost as if God had placed us there for that very reason—not to see the craftsmanship of the house—but for me to have a relationship with this woman who, as we’ve talked through our mentor relationship, we have found we have very similar stories at times throughout our lives.

Dannah: I guess that’s how mentoring relationships often start; there’s some sort of a common interest. For you, that was the experience of building a home. For me, one of the women I like to speak into her life helps me with my horses. She’s more experienced, and I rely on her for advice.

When we’re shoeing horses or giving vaccinations, spiritual questions come up, and we get to talk about those things. So this year as you’ve been studying Adorned, a more formal relationship started. How did that come about? Did it just like . . . “Oh, suddenly we’re mentoring.” Did you walk in the door one day and say, “Hey, I need a mentor!” 

Missy: No, it was very organic, as is often said. The mentor relationship in my life is two-fold in that I am both a mentor and a mentee. 

Dannah: You’re right there sandwiched in the middle, just like me.

Missy: I am. It’s an interesting place to be, because as I’ve been praying and searching for my place in this moment, in my spiritual life, I’ve wondered where that was. I’ve also recognized that as a mentor to younger women, I’m able to give some wisdom and some direction and some honesty, but I’m also in a place where I need that myself.

I need the honesty that I’m getting from Kay, as a mentor to me, when I really need to hear answers that aren’t always what I want to hear but what I need to hear.

Dannah: She tells you some things that you don’t want to hear?

Missy: Let’s just say: you don’t always agree with what you’re hearing, but you know that it’s what you need to hear.

Dannah: Yes.

Missy: And, as you said about submission, it’s like you don’t always want to submit, but sometimes you know that that’s what you need to do in order to get to the next place. 

Dannah: So,as you’re recognizing, “I’m mentoring women; I’m pouring out. I need someone pouring into me,” you felt a little bit of magnetism toward Kay, my mom, because you had some similarities. What would you say to the woman who is in her church and she’s pouring out into other women, and doesn’t really feel like she’s getting what she needs? 

She’s not being poured into, but she feels a magnetism toward someone. Maybe it’s through horses or house or Pilates class or whatever. What advice would you give her? What should she do to make this relationship move to the next level?

Missy: I think that mentor relationships that are the best are usually starting with a friendship and not a program. I think Kay and I have already established the friendship, and as you make that relationship stronger by spending time together, I think the mentoring part just kind of grows organically. You start asking the questions; you start opening up your heart; you start telling your secrets.

It’s hard to be in a situation where you can be open and honest and vulnerable with someone. I think that women are looking for that. I think we need our girlfriends. You know, some of us are single and some of us are married in our Bible study, some of us are divorced. And the common denominator is, we need our girlfriends.

We need that girl talk, that honesty, that vulnerability, that, “I get where you are right now. I understand,” or “I don’t understand but what I would love to help you anyway.”

Dannah: Exactly. There have been a few mentoring relationships in my life where I’ve just had to come outright and ask, “Would you meet with me a few times? I need advice on something that I think you’ve been through.” Don’t you think sometimes that’s critical?

Missy: That’s exactly how we started. I approached her. 

Dannah: Oh, really? Tell me about that.

Missy: I was praying. As I said, I was kind of in that in-between, like, “I know I need a mentor because I’m being a mentor. I’m feeling like I need more wisdom to pass on to these women.” And there were places in my life that I still hadn’t dealt with that I needed to talk through with someone—whether that be marriage, my work, my children. My children are a big part of my . . .

Dannah: Yes, you’re kind of at the same stage of life as me, where I’m like, “Wow! I was such an awesome mom! And now they’re adults, and I still have to be a mom. How does this stage work?”

Missy: Exactly! I felt that Kay knew, because of the conversations we had had before about her children, her grandchildren, her husband. 

Dannah: Oh, no-w-w we’re talkin’! You talk about me with your mentors?

Kay: No, never! 

Dannah: Oh, my goodness!

Kay: I tell them to read your books!

Missy: She tells me how proud she is of you.

Dannah: She can tell you about the warts, too, because there are plenty of those!

Missy: Yeah, but she doesn’t need to.

Dannah: Mom, I want to ask you a question: When Missy asked you, “Will you speak into my life?” essentially, “Will you be my mentor?” How did that feel? 

Kay: Well, I guess I was a little afraid, because I thought, How will my situations in life, things I’ve been through, really relate to her . . . and will they? But after our first conversation, we just connected and I felt such a motherly connection, I guess, but also a friend, a sister in Christ. And that’s what it’s all about.

And you know, we don’t share things that we shouldn’t share, but we share enough that we can help each other grow. And that’s what we do: we try to grow in Christ.

Dannah: Yes, right. So if a woman is feeling like she’s being called to mentor other women, it’s natural that she might feel a little bit afraid of that task.

Kay: Definitely!

Dannah: But the blessing is that you get something out of it, too!

Kay: Exactly!

Dannah: Kelly, you also have entered into a relationship with Kay this year, through the Adorned Bible study. Interestingly enough, you’ve been studying Titus 2 this whole year and God has been speaking to you, saying, “The older women should be teaching the younger women.”

So that lesson is being kind of front-and-center every week. In the course of that time, how did you start meeting with my mom? 

Kelly: So I’ve known Kay for many, many years. I don’t even remember when we met, but our church was in an older building. I don’t know if she was greeting back in the day, but I remember she was just a familiar face.

The first several years of our marriage I was on the road with my husband, and then when our kids got old enough to start school, I decided to come off the road and raise my kids at home. Then I got involved in church. I’ve just known Kay for a long time!

Kay is a greeter at church, and so every Sunday morning we would go in and Kay would greet. I always got the nicest, warmest hugs from Kay. Still to this day I’m always like, “I need my Kay hug!”

Dannah: Wow. You know, I love that my mom and dad greet, because they’re these very powerful, successful business people. They’re leaders in many ways, and yet they’re serving in this really simple way every Sunday.

Kelly: They’re very welcoming!

Dannah: That makes a big difference, doesn’t it?

Kelly: It really does! Yes.

Dannah: So you got your “Kay” hug every Sunday. 

Kelly: I get my Kay hug every Sunday, and now through Bible studies and when we meet. So we were at the study and it was one of the first weeks. Then we started talking about mentoring and stuff. They had said, “You should find somebody to mentor or someone to mentor you,” and Kay and I were standing by each other.

She said, “I would love to mentor you!” 

And I said, “I would love for you to!”

Dannah: So it was really because you studied the book that your heart was more open to the need.

Kelly: Yes.

Dannah: Before you started the Bible study based on the book Adorned, were you being mentored?

Kelly: No, I was not.

Dannah: So the Bible study kind of opened your heart to the fact that God desires this for us.

Kelly: Yes, and it’s very important. I’m finding now, i really is!

Dannah: The whole book is based on Titus 2. Let me read that, because I just think, we’re talking about how we need each other. We’re having this simple girl-talk time, but this is really theology. It’s theology of life; it’s theology of the Word of God; it’s theology of living.

Titus 2:1, 3–5 says: 

But as for you, teach what accords with sound doctrine . . . Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach 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, that the word of God may not be reviled.

Now, as you heard this passage dissected phrase-by-phrase, chapter-by-chapter in the book Adorned, you got your courage up to ask Kay to be your mentor? Or did you just finally realize, “This is something God wants in my life”? Like, what happened?

Kelly: I just realized something was missing in my life. I was a mom and I raised my kids, and worked from our office at home. I just didn’t realize how much I needed it until Kay and I started meeting and how important her input is in my life. I just needed to be able to bounce things off of her—anywhere from friendships to marriage to work to whatever. 

She just had a godly perspective, and she just had “been there, done that.” But it wasn’t . . . there’s like no age gap whenever you do it.

Dannah: That’s so true, isn’t it? I remember mentoring, I think, my first girl. She was about fifteen; I was maybe twenty-five. And there was a big emotional maturity age gap, but when you enter into that mentoring relationship, when you sit down at the table together, you start baring your souls . . . it becomes friendship!

Kelly: It’s true!

Dannah: Okay so, without asking you to bare your soul here, Kelly, what is one area where this mentoring relationship has really helped and encouraged you? 

Kelly: Just knowing I have somebody else to pray with me and for me. If I have a question and I’m not quite sure how to handle it, if it’s something we’ve already discussed it’s just so nice to have her input and to have her guidance in a lot of ways. 

We don’t have family in the area. You can call your mom and say, “Hey, Mom, what would you do?” But it’s just nice to have the person-to-person, one-on-one, face-to-face, absolutely, and it’s just very encouraging and very uplifting.

Dannah: Well, it’s been really exciting to see these relationships unfold and to just hear my how my mom is being used by the Lord. That’s always fulfilling! So I love seeing your mentoring relationships grow!

What have been the key take-aways for you from the Adorned Bible study? If you were to say, “This week is the week that God really spoke to my heart and my soul on the topic of Titus 2 living.” What comes to mind?

Kelly: The chapter Revival of Reverence. It’s stuff that I know, but when somebody else points it out and you read about it, it just kind of reiterates the fact. Page 92 in the book says that we, as Christians, always have our lives on display—always. People are watching. More importantly, God is watching. This awareness should deepen our motivation to honor and represent Him well at all times.

It’s really true. You just live your life day by day, but you don’t know who is watching and whose life you can impact just by how you act, how you speak, how you treat others.

It was just a reminder to me that people are watching, and I need to show God through me to impact the lives of others.

Dannah: Yes, because the whole point of this Titus 2 living is that God’s Word won’t be reviled; that we display His truth and His love no matter we are. And we need each other to do that. We need to live life on life, woman on woman, as Nancy says in Adorned.

Thank you for spending your time with me and sharing. I hope that some women today are encouraged. I would just ask you, if you are listening, who is mentoring you? Are you wishing there was someone, but there doesn’t seem to be anyone applying for the job?

On today’s program, we hope you heard these two simple unfolding mentoring relationships and that it will just encourage you to get a mentoring relationship rolling in your life. We’re praying for you. Mom, I’m going to put you on the spot and ask if you might pray for the women listening who are aching to have a mentor in their life, and they just can’t get the courage to ask someone.

Or, maybe it’s an older woman like you who’s like, “I’m aging out! I need to go hang out with women my own age.” Would you pray for them to allow the truth of Titus 2 to just seep deep down into their hearts?

Kay: Can I first read a quote that Nancy has in the book, that I love?

Dannah: Yes, of course you can.

Kay: She said, 

When God’s Word is learned and lived out by older and younger women together, the outcome will be stunningly beautiful—utterly captivating!—a mirror reflection of Christ.

And I loved that when I read it, and that’s what we are doing here today.

Father, we thank You so much that You have brought us together as women—women in Christ who love the Lord with all our hearts, our souls, and our minds. We pray, Father, that as women listen to our words today (and yesterday) that You would just cause their hearts to desire to be together, to be adorned by the beauty of Jesus Christ in our lives.

May they call on one another, to be part of each others’ lives, and to mentor and be a mentee and not be afraid. Let us all as older women reach out to the younger women. Whatever we’ve learned in life, let us pass it on, let us teach others, let us learn from others. We praise you, God! We love You, we praise You, we honor You, and we thank You! In Jesus’ name . . .

Dannah: . . . amen!

Nancy: Amen! Isn’t sweet to hear ways that women are connecting and encouraging one another to life out the beauty of the gospel together? We’ve been listening to Dannah Gresh, along with her mom, Kay Barker, and her friends, Missy Babcock and Kelly Rider. They mentioned a book that I’ve written called Adorned: Living Out the Beauty of the Gospel Together.

It’s full of practical insight and wisdom of what it looks like, what it means for women to help other women in their walk with the Lord on a day-in, day-out basis. This book is one that we’d love to share with you as a way of saying “thank you” when you donate to help support the work of Revive Our Hearts.

If you believe in what we’re doing in calling women to freedom, fullness, and fruitfulness in Christ, then I’d encourage you to contact us with a gift of any size. Now, we don’t want to take away anything from your regular giving to your church. That should come first.

But if the Lord is burdening you beyond that to give to support the ministry of Revive Our Hearts, why don’t you contact us at ReviveOurHearts.com. You can go on that website, find out where it says “donate,” and you give your gift there . . . or you can call us a 1–800–569–5959. When you call to make your gift, be sure to ask for a copy of Adorned, the book that Dannah and her friends were talking about today.

Does it every feel to you like life is falling apart? Tomorrow my longtime friend, Holly Elliff, will join me in the studio to tell us what one thing will never change, even when everything else in life feels like it’s shifting. Please be back for Revive Our Hearts.

Revive Our Hearts with Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth champions women mentoring women. It’s an outreach of Life Action Ministries.

All Scripture is taken from the ESV.
 

*Offers available only during the broadcast of the podcast season.

Join the Discussion