Gratituesday: Godly Mentors

I’ve spent many of my 15,840+ days on this earth having no clue what to do, making mistakes, and learning as I go. 

As a teenager, I muddled my way through each day, trying to figure out who in the world I was. (Thank you, God, that I never have to be a seventh grader again.) 

I began college with vigor, only to be met with the shocking realization that as a young adult, I needed to claim my own faith, keep up with my own laundry, study my heart out, and make my own doctor appointments.

When I first got married, I excitedly poured my heart into making a home, while serving my new husband many burnt grilled cheese sandwiches and underdone, doughy pancakes.

When our oldest son was born, I found myself totally in love with my newborn who quickly turned into a toddler. But I wore a “deer in the headlights” look for much of the time. Changing a diaper was easy enough, but where was the handbook on how to properly get a stubborn three year old to obey without having a melt-down in the middle of aisle nine? (Take your pick on who was having the melt-down…me or the three year old.)

In a few short years, three more baby boys were added to our family.  I now had to learn to manage sibling squabbles, synchronize nap schedules, and deal with having too few hands to keep up with active little boys who didn’t care to sit quietly in a church pew.  

There were wiggly teeth and ER visits for stitches. There were illnesses. There was death. There was pain and grieving. There were job changes. There was confusion.  There were new adventures. There was more blessing than we could have ever dreamed or imagined.

And now? Now there are teenagers and preteens and a closet full of soccer cleats, work gloves, and basketballs. There are savings accounts, algebra lessons, odd jobs, hobbies, overloaded schedules, learner’s permits, and cute girls. Right around the corner there will be transcripts, scholarship applications, senior pictures, and ACT scores. 

Somehow I did make it through those uncertain baby and preschool years. This gives me hope that somehow, I will also make it through these deep voice changing, independent, cut-the-apron-string years too, even though I often feel utterly incompetent.

As unprepared as I sometimes feel, I take comfort knowing that I’ve never had to do any of this alone. Obviously God has been my ultimate guide, and Matt is a solid rock of a teammate. But what I’ve appreciated more than words can express are the women God has put in my life to walk me through each stage. Women who have “been there, done that”. Women who care. Women who don’t mind that I ask thirteen to three hundred questions. Women who love me for who I am and empower me to be what God has called me to be.

I’m not alone. And neither are you. There’s nothing new under the sun, and nothing you or I are going through hasn’t already been dealt with by someone else. Thank you, God, for wise mentors and for friends who offer encouragement.

Now if I can just refrain from purposely giving my boys bad hair cuts in an effort to ward off the cute girls.  I kid.  (I think.)

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Comments

  1. says

    I smiled at your last sentence about giving your boys bad hair cuts too ward off the cute girls. Haha ! I thank God for your blog post this morning. I’ve no children yet but will be starting soon and it is encouraging to read that through it all, I can count on the Lord being with me and helping me navigate those years which I know will come by so quickly.

    Thanks Laura and you have a splendid day.

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  2. says

    Oh, Laura, this was beautifully written. I got a little misty when you spoke of deep voices and cutting apron strings. Mine are all teens now (six of them) and I feel the same way. And like you, sometimes I wonder how I ever made it through the early years! Thank God. Literally….

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  3. Jennifer S. says

    I also have to admit to getting teary eyed with this post. We’re just entering the deep voice stage with our oldest son. It’s kind of scary but like you I know that God will be there for us. It’s also kind of sad that my first little boy is now taller than me. Thankfully God just gave me a new baby boy.

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  4. Joanne says

    I was teary eyed too. Probably more big wet tears than just teary eyed actually :)

    I am glad I was not the only one!!!

    I will just say that my “kids” are 18,19 (20 in a month) and 21 (22 in june). All about 15 months apart.

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  5. says

    I’ve had great Christian mentors and role models, as well! I pray that I’m doing the same for a younger mom – who is just starting out! Thanks for this post :).

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  6. says

    I’m in that season right now. I have a 3 year old who I sometimes find very difficult to discipline. And now we are soon adding baby #2 and I have to get used to diapers & feeding all over again. Thanks for putting it all into perspective!

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  7. Sarah says

    Thank you for this post! It made me teary. I have a 5 y/o son & my “baby” girl will be 2 on Saturday. I always feel overwhelmed & underprepared for the challenges I face with motherhood. Some moms make it look easy but I do NOT. Just the other day I took my son to a birthday party & while there opened my mouth to let a friend know my daughter had been going on the potty that day & I was so proud of her! Maybe we were making progress! My daughter chose that exact moment to pee in her pull up which then leaked all over my jeans!! Luckily I had a change of clothes for her, but none for me. :) I feel like I am muddling through in survival mode right now. It’s good to remember these early years do go by fast, it is just a season, & that God is indeed with me! Thank you for the reminder!

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  8. says

    Thank you for the linkup today.

    That was such a good post. My story would sound about the same…and I don’t know how I will get through the parenting stage I am in now except by the grace of God.

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  9. says

    I love that God gives us mentors and people to help us through each season of our life. I cannot do this alone and I fail when I try. Today I’m thankful for a man I’ve never met, but he fills me with such hope for my J. Dr. Wakefield is a blessing and I wish there were more doctors out there like him.

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  10. says

    I so agree. What would we young women and mothers have done without mentors along the way to guide us in Godly marriages and motherhood? I too, have had women who were teachers through the years.
    Titus 2:3-5
    3 Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good,
    4 and so train the young women to love their husbands and children,
    5 to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled.
    Shirley

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    Birdie Reply:

    Wonderful Shirley. Laura and I are around the same age and I count her as a mentor :)

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    Shirley Newton Reply:

    Thanks,I’m looking forward to my first grandbabies in a few weeks. Yes, grandbabies. Twin girls to be here soon. I hope to be more involved in my daughter-in-law and those girl’s lives.
    Shirley

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  11. Birdie says

    Yes, we go from mommy’s everything, to mommy your something, to feed me, to the cute girls. Wow, I STILL have the “caught in the headlight” look. From the first breath of our children we must let go and go along with God. Boy, can it mean some really hard days! Thank you Laura, for another great post =).

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  12. jessica says

    Thank you so much for this post. I struggle from day to day feeling like I need to try to be this super perfect mother that I realize is not realistic. Glad to know I am not alone with my daily struggles of motherhood. :)

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  13. says

    How timely this post! I have a three year old and a one year old. I’m constantly in the deer-in-headlights mode. Thankfully, we’re at a point where I might be able to stay at home with them and even possibly expand our family again. He surely is good; we just have be open enough to listen!

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  14. says

    With a 3 1/2 year old and 1 year old, I often feel like a “deer in the headlights” mother. Daily, I’m trying to trust in the LORD with all my heart and lean not on my own understanding. Lately, the LORD is teaching me about my most important TO DO. Linked up to Gratituesday today :-). Thanks so much for hosting.

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  15. Ashley says

    Everytime you think you’ve got this whole parenting thing finally figured out, your child hit a new stage that is completely new and different.

    ACT scores, cute girls…that makes me want to faint even thinking about. Glad you’re there first Laura… let me know what you figure out. :)

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  16. says

    I so appreciate your sharing what you went through as a new young mother. So often we feel so alone during that stage of life, like we are the first and only ones to go through these things! :) It is so encouraging when we find out not only were we not alone but other women could almost recite back the same experiences! I am sure you have blessed many young mothers with this post!!

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  17. Brooke says

    Ditto!
    I am so grateful for the mentors that God has placed in my life :) I love the women around me who LOVE God and are wiser in their years, and who have come along side me to help me through college years, marriage struggles, parenting stuggles, relationship with God, death, and more!! Thank you Lord for sisters!
    I hope to be able to pass along encouragment to others down the road. ;)

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  18. Rebekah says

    I agree and blogs like your have been so helpful to me now and in the past few years when I didn’t have Godly mentors or even people to say “I’ve been there before and I know how hard it is”. I am thankful for your blog and what you do it has been a huge encouragement to me.

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  19. Faith says

    Laura,
    This really encouraged me today, and God had me see it at just the right time because I just lost my temper with my two year old and had to tell her I was sorry. It’s always good to be reminded that I am not in this alone. God has been showing me lately how short this life really is and how I need to just purposely focus on what’s eternal and not stress out and worry about all the temporary things that honestly really don’t matter anyway. Thanks again for being such a blessing to our family and for the words that God speaks through you. I hope you and your family have a wonderful Valentine’s day. I am planning on making my husband (and us!) some peanut butter cookies from a recipe on here, except I am thinking about switching out the honey for sucanat since I have a few bags I need to use :) Take care!

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  20. says

    I still haven’t figured out the doughy pancake problem….

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    Laura Reply:

    I found that it is really important to let the pancakes cook on one side until they are very, very bubbly – then turn them over to let them cook for a few minutes. It could be that your batter is so thick that it’s hard to get the middle of the pancakes cooked thoroughly. If that’s the case, add just a little more milk or buttermilk. :)

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