We are giving the older generation something bigger than retirement: an active call to mentor individuals who want to grow through the experience, wisdom, and encouragement of a seasoned believer.
The Value of a Seasoned Believer
A significant part of our focus at Alumni Connect is finding and inspiring older Christians to be mentors.
Our culture tells older generations to pursue retirement and relax. Churches, despite best intentions, end up moving well-seasoned individuals out of reach by segregating the community by age.
In our opinion, this is a tremendous waste! Yes, retirement certainly has benefits, and some individuals have increasing limitations, but something precious is being lost and overlooked in our culture.
These believers have made mistakes. They’ve grown. If these older generations are pushed to the wayside, their wealth of experience is closed up in a Sunday School class. Instead, they could be teaching and encouraging younger generations deep lessons through their own…
Walk with God: Seasoned believers have walked through good, difficult, and dark times, providing a unique perspective on seeing God’s faithfulness in concrete ways from their own lives.
Career: They’ve spent years in the workforce, under difficult bosses, serving clients, management, and co-workers by doing their job well and for the Lord.
Relationships: They’ve walked through singleness, divorce, or years of marriage. They understand raising children or grieving not having any. They’ve experienced the pain of being hurt by someone, but have seen the fruit of hard work in relationships.
Real life is complicated, stretching, and sometimes boring. There are thousands of decisions to be made all along the way. Our mentors have walked this path when it’s been easy, and hard.
Profile of a Mentor
You don’t need to be an extrovert or a theologian to become a mentor!
- Loves God and believes Him to be present and actively working in their life every day.
- Can recount how they’ve seen God’s love demonstrated in their lives previously (months or years back) and recently (yesterday or last week).
- Is comfortable sharing their thoughts and beliefs.
- Knows the Bible reasonably well.
- Is led by the Holy Spirit.
- Knows that good relationships and trust take time to establish.
- Loves people and cares for them.
- Is trustworthy and exercises discernment.
- Isn’t nosey.
- Does well at building friendships.
- Connects well with people.
- Is committed to individual relationships.
- Has been through real life’s difficulties, sees God’s hand and faithfulness in them, and recognizes those experiences as useful in encouraging others.
- Can tell a personal story as it relates to alumni’s circumstances.
- Knows how to integrate Biblical truth into real life, an informal conversation, and someone else’s unique circumstances.
- Recognizes that people are each unique individuals and therefore have different strengths that God has equipped them with.
- Knows a curriculum usually doesn’t apply.
- Both humble and yet confident, knowing that God