Earline, a former missionary to Brazil, is more than a friend, she is actually my official mentor. I met her through Apples of Gold and after she told the story of her marriage during a chapter on marriage, I knew she would be good for our family. God was leading and did we ever benefit from following His lead. We love this charming lady who is always praying for us and encouraging us. Over the years, she's patiently rearranged her schedule to fit our busy lives and to be there for us. After visiting with her, you always feel like you can take on the world and you feel strongly that you have a mission and that you are well equipped to fulfill it to its fullest. If you ask questions that she doesn't know the answer to, she will gladly do the research for you. She delights in listening to your spiritual growth. And after a while of coming to my house, I found out that she also mentors to one of my other favorite people: Kim! Earline must be pretty awesome to do that.
Funny little side story: Her husband and her were avid rock collectors. Her husband won quite a few awards for the beautiful rocks he cut and polished and they owned a collection that included exotic rocks from all over the world. Their basement used to be a museum where they invited schools and homeschool groups to. This comes in very handy when you have kids that are becoming more and more interested in rocks. While David and I used to love combing beaches for agates, our knowledge of rocks doesn't go very far beyond that (maybe throw in some basalt, obsidian and other lava rocks). Earline on the other hand, opened a whole new avenue for them and gifted them with incredible rocks from other places around the world. She used them to witness to them. This was also the perfect ending to our rock study unit this year.
Our visits have changed over the years. She used to come to my house to have tea here but now I get to go to her place as she can't drive anymore. She has the nicest apartment and the best coffee and always waits with a treat. Those Thursday evenings once a month are precious to me. We talk bible and life and how to apply one to the other. She gives me spiritual wisdom and encouragement. And slowly I'm seeing how Jesus wants me to love those around me.
If you ask me, everyone should have a mentor. Men, women and children. It is amazing and truly a gift. When I first asked Earline to become my mentor, it took everything to ask her. I'd much rather not have asked. But I'm glad I did. This lady is leaving a forever imprint on our family.