Thursday, November 1, 2012
Construct With Memory
As we enter into our vocations we need the community of artisans and colleagues to teach and sharpen and encourage growth and skills. We learn from the collective memory, some living and some dead, classroom by personal experience or classrooms through reading or other forms of art. In some ways it’s a modern day version of guilds where skills can be passed down from generation to generation. And everyone benefits.
However when we are fortunate enough to find a mentor, that experience deepens into our hearts and becomes a spiritual inheritance as well. They give us the tools that help us identify our particular bent or purpose or skill within the body. And when we stumble or lose our direction they give us their gift of memory by asking questions that remind us why we started, and where our vision is, and how to find our starting point again. They are a rare gift. They share from generous hearts.
But how exactly? How do they construct beyond craft to spirit? I have been blessed by two special mentors, authors Lauraine Snelling and Ethel Herr, who have practiced what they teach for well over the twenty years I’ve known them. And so I began to list some of their qualities as mentors where they have shared and challenged and grounded me over the years to find the concrete within the abstract. (See the list below)
Their gifts to myself, and many many others, came to a highlight this week as Ethel passed into heaven and our community of writers began the process of saying goodbye by remembering all our stories with her. Mentor. Friend. Poet. Historian. Author. Pray-er. And so much more.
Stories that will help us construct with memory every time we think of her. Words passed along with commitment and humor, with love and challenge, with hope and integrity. Words to be valued. Poured out words.
Received with gratitude.
Go down the list below and write next to each category the name of a mentor who has contributed to your inheritance for faith/vocation/purpose. What are the words or ideas they have given you to sustain you when the road gets blurry, to help you remember your goals for:
Quality of Craft
Share: What is a lifelong insight that you received from a mentor?