As we journey through Holy Week and Easter, the LSS blog topics are following a theme of “New Beginnings”. Each day, a different department will post a relevant topic that follows the theme of the week. Today’s post comes from Mentoring Services.
The theme of renewal is abundant in the Easter season. One thing that has been on my mind lately is not giving up. I reacquainted myself with a favorite verse and wrote it down to remember to use in this post:
Let us not become weary in doing good. For at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. — Gal. 6:9
In this verse, we are reminded to not become apathetic in our faith. Likewise, I believe mentors should not become apathetic in their commitment to students. We often write about all of the joys that come with mentoring, but there are challenges. Believe me, there are challenges.
Your student does not respond to a question. Your student transfers schools again. Your student misses yet another day or has yet another behavior issue. Your student tells you something about their life, and while you are happy that they shared it with you, you just can’t imagine it. You feel like you finally turn a corner, and then there is another hurdle. It seems like the struggles are unending.
And we start to think we are no longer making a difference and it is in many ways easier to just not care anymore. To give up.
That is when mentoring matters the most. Mentoring can give you a lot of incredible things, but instant gratification generally is not one of them. Some of the best mentors are the ones who will be there for the long haul because they did not give up. Those are the ones that will be able to experience the joy of seeing their student graduate high school. The joy of their student finally finding the thing that makes them thrive. In many ways, they get to see their new beginning.
As we approach the end of the school year, mentors might see summer vacation as the perfect exit. Inevitably, there will be a significant percent of volunteers who retire. This year though, I challenge people to stick with it. If you need help getting through a tough situation with your student, ask us or talk to people at the school. Please do not give up on that kid. If they needed a mentor at some point, they probably still do. Get through those struggles and remember that someday, there will be a reward.