My former pastor, Rick Warren, used to say we are continually going through or coming out of a tough time—a mess. Sometimes the mess is concurrent with a joyous time—a cancer diagnosis while planning a daughter’s wedding.

Yes, there are those wonderful reprieves when life is good and problems are few, but none of us are spared character-building experiences—times when we couldn’t have made it through without God. As we experience God’s faithfulness in all circumstances, He wants us to share our Source of Strength with someone on a similar journey.

My passion and purpose is to help all Christians see that mentoring is simply—Sharing Life’s Experiences and God’s Faithfulness—my tagline for living the Christian life.

Kathy’s Helpful Tips

Kathy is a family friend who understands how to mentor from your mess. While weathering through a difficult divorce and struggling to balance life as a single mom, Kathy makes time to share from her own experience how to help, mentor, and pray for women in a similar circumstance. Sadly, we all know someone experiencing what Kathy describes, and who better to tell us how we can help women in crisis than another woman in crisis.

Reach Out and Touch Someone

I [Kathy] continue to hear more and more stories of women in the midst of divorce or separation, physical, verbal, and emotional abuse, and the victims of financial "money moving." If you know someone going through this, please reach out to her. Let her know you care and that you’re there for her.

Pray consistently for her and her children! I can't tell you how isolating it can be when your world is crashing down: you're bruised and battle scarred, scared, and trying to be strong for your kids. It’s so easy to isolate because you have nothing left to give; but that’s when you need others to hold you up, pray for you, and bring you a Costco pizza so you remember to eat and feed your kids.

Don’t Let Anyone Walk Through Difficulty Alone

I never would have made it without my family, friends, and church family, huddling around me and lifting me up in prayer. They wouldn't let me isolate—even when I tried—and I am so blessed because of it. The number of women walking through this battle is staggering, and we need to make sure they don't walk alone! And if you know a dad in this situation, reach out to him. The numbers aren't as great, but the pain is just as deadly!

Honor Faithful Love

My heart aches when I see so many families torn apart by infidelity, abuse, porn, and arrogance. To those with faithful spouses who keep walking with you in the middle of life's chaos, hold them close. Treasure them. Pray for them!

Adopt a broken family into your hearts. Let their kids see a healthy marriage—they need to know it's possible.

The First Step in Healing is Helping

For those who have walked the broken road and survived, share your story, wisdom, failures, hugs...as God leads you. Offer hope to those who can't see past today! God allows us to go through trials because He has a greater purpose than we can see. One of those purposes is to comfort those on a similar journey. You understand what they are dealing with...when no one else can. You know how to pray for them. You know how to help them avoid things that you didn't avoid. Guide them through the deep waters so that one day they can guide someone else.

Most importantly, point them to the ultimate Guide: Jesus Christ!

Kathy is applying my paraphrase of Titus 2:3-5: Teach another woman what you’ve been taught so she can someday teach what you taught her...

Read more thoughts on mentoring at womantowomanmentoring.com.

Janet Thompson is an international speaker and an award-winning author of 17 books, including Woman to Woman Mentoring: How to Start, Grow, and Maintain a Mentoring Ministry,Face-to-Face Bible study series,Dear God, They Say It’s Cancer, Dear God, Why Can’t I Have a Baby? and Praying for Your Prodigal Daughter. Janet is the founder of Woman to Woman Mentoring and About His Work Ministries. Visit Janet at womantowomanmentoring.com.

Publication date: September 13, 2013