In the first little church that Chris served while in seminary, a little red-brick church in Cox’s Creek, Kentucky, was a woman named Belinda. And for the seven and a half years that we lived and worked in that area, I stuck to her like glue. She taught me to cook, to lead, to teach, to serve … and all without any formal classes or meetings or seminars.
She just let me watch her live.
We went to conferences together, we served together on the women’s ministry leadership team, we worked in the nursery together. We ate Chinese food after church on Sundays, and we did Bible studies together.
I saw her mother her college-age daughters (who are just a few years younger than I am), saw her plan two weddings, and now watch as she is Mimi to their kids.
We need more Belindas in the world.
We need more men and women who will allow younger adults (and those younger in the faith) to come alongside their lives and just watch them live and serve. We need people who aren’t afraid to let someone outside their immediate family into their circle. None of us lead perfect lives, but that’s not the point. The point is, younger adults want and need those of us a few years further down the road to walk hand-in-hand with them through the ups and downs of life.
Yes, many of them have parents who are helping them, but not all do. And even those who do would like a different perspective – and maybe you are just the person to provide that.
Yes, it can be messy. Yes, it takes time. Yes, you might get hurt. But you might also gain a friend. You might also find joy in watching a younger adult learn about life. You might just find some joy and a new perspective yourself.
Mature Christian, the young adults around you need you. Would you be a Belinda to someone today?