As a beginner mentor you may need some ideas on how to respond to the emails that are sent to you. Here are a few sample responses that can help you formulate your own response.
Below you will find samples for: General Problems; Dating; Marriage; Depression; Addictions
Letter Example #1 about General Problems
I’m very sorry to hear that you have experienced so many negative things in your life. You must be a strong person in order to be the survivor that you are.
First of all, should I assume that you have invited Christ into your life and that you are a child of God?
Before we invite Christ into our life we must realize that we have been separated from God because of sin. We continually try to reach God through our efforts, such as a good life, religion-but we always fail.
God made a provision for our sin by sending his son Jesus Christ. He died in our place.
“God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 4:8). Christ died … was buried… and raised on the third day. Jesus said, “I am the way, and the truth and the life; no one comes to the Father, but through Me.” (John 14:6)
We can receive Christ by asking Him to come into our life. Asking Him to forgive our sins and making us what He would like us to be.
You can pray right now and ask Him to come into your life… like this:
Lord Jesus, I want to know you personally. Thank you for dying on the cross for my sins. I ask you to come into my life and make me the kind of person you want me to be. Thank you for forgiving my sins and giving me eternal life. Amen
Now Jesus is in your life. We know this because He said He would come in if we asked Him to. Rev 3:20 says
“Behold I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him”
God will give you help if you ask him to.
I believe that after you have invited Christ into your life you need to sit down and talk to God about how exactly you feel about all of the abuse and the rape. If you feel angry, tell God this. Just tell Him whatever comes to your mind. God can take it. Then when you have done that, as an act of the will, say that you forgive these people. Name all the things that you forgive them for. Maybe your feelings won’t go along with this but ask God for strength. Don’t do this lightly but block off some time in the privacy of your room.
Well, I have spoken a lot – maybe you have some questions. I am more than willing to answer any questions you might have.
Letter Example #2 about Dating
Thank you for sharing your situation with me…and I can feel for your frustration in this awkward situation. You sound deeply in love and very respectful of your boyfriend, and I fully understand your annoyance over him staying with his former wife. But as I tried to remain neutral when reading of your story, I was reminded that you are not in a married situation and thus the commitment level is a little different. Even though you have been together for some time in a dating situation, and then seven months ago decided to live together, there has been no solid commitment made in public to remain committed together for life. When one is married the expectation level and commitment level are different.
From your boyfriend’s reaction to your thoughts over this situation it sounds like he doesn’t fully respect your feelings. This could be a warning sign, or possibly he is just not realizing the extent of your hurt. Another alternative to staying with his ex-wife’s home could be to stay with some friends in the same area. Possibly even the ex-wife could suggest some people. Personally I cannot imagine what kind of message his children could be getting from a situation like this. Something that he should also consider in my opinion.
I hope that these thoughts are helpful in working through this difficulty. My thoughts and prayers will remain with you.
Letter Example #3 about Marriage Issues
I am very sorry to hear of your disappointment in your marriage relationship. Relationships are certainly complicated, and very often people can disappoint us in life.
In a marriage situation great communication is one of the keys to a successful relationship Have you had a chance to express your thoughts to your husband? I would encourage you to do this at an appropriate time in a private area. I would also think very carefully how I would approach the subject, and be careful not to put him on the defensive. It is often best to begin such a conversation with some positive things such as why you were attracted to him when you first met him, what you still appreciate about him. Try to find something positive to build into him before taking time to share your thoughts of unmet needs.
Another important area of building a strong marriage is to continue dating each other. Have you considered a quiet dinner out, or a fun activity that you would both enjoy together? Dating certainly does not end after the marriage vows.
I admire your way in dealing with the problem with your mother in law, asking forgiveness is the right thing to do. That opens the road for healing and relationships can be re built when the heart is soft. Maybe confirm this with your husband, and ensure that this is not still an issue with him.
I have been married for 23 years and have two almost grown children. A great marriage is made from two people committed to giving one hundred per cent of themselves to each other. I am blessed with a great marriage, and a great husband…but our years together are like everyone else’s and have not been without differences to work through.
I would like to share with you something that has made a tremendous difference in our lives. We are both very committed to our faith in God, and have decided to pray for each other and our relationship. With a strong faith as a foundation in a marriage, God is the centre, and the Bible is our guide for life. If you are interested in finding out more about a life with Jesus as the center please go to 4 Steps to Knowing God, http://www.thoughts-about-god.com/4laws/law0.html. My prayers will be with you, feel free to respond back if you have any further questions.
Letter Example #4 about Depression
I’m (name) and (name) forwarded your e-mail to me. I sometimes help at Thoughts About God by talking to people via e-mail. I pray that God will help me to help you during this difficult time.
Depression is not an easy thing to go through. It must be very hard for you, everyone thinks that having a new baby, especially twins is a wonderful happy occasion and there you are feeling very sad most of the time. I want you to know that you are not alone, many people suffer with depression and that includes Christians.
So often we think that because we are Christians everything is going to be wonderful, but God does not promise a problem free life, but He does promise to be with us when we have problems. “When you pass thought the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.” Isaiah 43:2. He also promises that he will not give us more than we can handle but will make a way for us. “No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.” I Corinthians 10: 13.
Life may seem very difficult for you right now but it will not always be this way. I, myself, have been living with a chronic condition for the last 10 years and I have had many difficult days. No matter how bad the pain or the loneliness, I know that God is always there with me, helping me to get thought it, even on the days when I feel like crying all the time. God will get you through this time and I am certain it will not last for 10 years.
Depression after having a baby is very common and usually lasts only a short time. Do talk to your doctor about it and get medical advise. If you have a mentor or close friend talk to them and on bad days, call them and ask them to pray for you. You can always e-mail me and we can pray together. Try to take one day at a time, sometimes even one hour or one minute at a time. Keep reminding yourself that with God’s help you can do all things and that you can get through this.
It is really important that you do not feel guilty because you have a problem with depression. Would you feel guilty if you broke a leg or had a kidney stone and needed surgery? Depression is a medical imbalance of your hormones. It is a medical problem. It is curable and treatable and it is not your fault. In the same way that you would take care of yourself if you had a broken leg or a kidney stone or other medical problem, you need to take care of yourself now. Get a baby sitter and go out for an evening with your husband or a friend. Take some time just for you and think of it as a special medicine that you need right now.
Before I say goodbye, lets pray,
Heavenly Father, I ask you to be with (mentorees name) in a very loving, special way. I ask you to protect her mind and help her to have the mind of Christ. Help her to remember your word and to keep it in her heart. I pray that you would send people to her that can help her at this time. I pray for healing and that you would restore her hormones to the level you created them to be so that they will function properly. Help her family and friends to be understanding at this time and help her to enjoy her babies. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
If you would like to talk more by e-mail, just drop me a note and we can talk and pray together.
Letter Example #5 about Addictions and Parenting
Thank you for sharing your response with us.
Your decision to allow the Holy Spirit to guide and direct your life is very freeing.
Being a father myself I certainly understand how distressing it is when we see our kids choosing self-destructive behaviour.
My son is a recovering addict (for many years now). The word ‘recovering’ is an on going process. He still has to read cold medication bottles for content. I don’t know how old your boy is, but I do want to tell you, you are not alone in this journey.
I found, the key was/is to entrust our kids completely to the Lord. I needed to take my hands off and KNOW that the Lord was not going to allow anything to touch my sons life that Jesus cannot take care of. My son was the Lord’s before the foundations of the world and He entrusted him to me for this season of his life. Supplying all I needed to care for and nurture my boy. I found those years were one of the biggest learning curves I’ve been on. Is it hard…the hardest! Is it painful….excruciating! Did the Lord prove Himself faithful…beyond my wildest dreams!
I became part of an Alanon group to help me see what I needed to do to stay sane. The key phrase that I need reminding of all the time is “I AM POWERLESS” but the Lord isn’t.
Continue to pray the Lord’s perfect will for your son’s life and ask Him to help you to see through His eyes, and hear with His ears and have His compassion.
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart; and do not rely on your own insight. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make straight your paths”. Proverbs 3:5
(mentorees name), feel free to write back if you wish to share your struggles.
May God grant you peace and serenity.
You are, In His Grip