I’m 70 years of age - so is my wife. We just celebrated our 140th combined birthday with a range of friends and family representing Q2 and Q3 and Q4. God is good.
How I occupy my time:
God has provided me a path of meaningful mentoring for the past 10 years. I expect Him to continue to bring meaningful opportunities and experiences into my life for many more years; in fact, the whole of my lifetime.
Mentoring is not all I do – but it is my current calling.
In addition to one-on-one mentoring I work together with my wife mentoring couples; I help sometimes in her garden and we travel. After living overseas for 13 years of our 48 years of marriage, we are discovering more of Australia - we’re not grey nomads; I’m more a “glamping” type (glamour camping) – and we travel overseas from time-to-time. We love different cultures and the people God puts in our way.
We have positions of ministry leadership in a very young Baptist church plant, but generally in the background.
Transition from work to fourth-quarter:
While working in Australia and Asia for an international company for the 23 years before “retiring” I had opportunity to encourage staff, peers and seniors. Some of these people described this as “mentoring”, although I have come to realise that “mentoring” means different things to different people.
When I retired, a situation caused my wife and I to “put-down” all the good ideas of what we thought we might do in retirement and ask God what he had planned. He said independently to us “” Start a mentoring company”.
We did! Then what?
God led me to a Christian group of mentors based in Australia with overseas reach – Mentors and Business Coaches International Pty Ltd (MBCI). I was impressed with the Spirit-led way they went about raising and training mentors and mentoring individuals – in the marketplace. Not the church (although sometimes a church leader), but in the workplace – Christians and pre-Christians. I was mentored by one of MBCI’s founders and became an accredited mentor. During this 12-month journey I learned that an MBCI mentor is “a trusted leader who facilitates and equips others to change to reach their God-given potential. “It was not about replicating me, or giving advice, but helping the mentee to find what God had placed inside him or her that He wanted to release. This required a mind-set change for me; from telling my story to facilitating and asking really “good” questions.
Has it been easy?
My corporate job was very satisfying. It was intense and took my wife and me to places and gave us experiences we couldn’t have expected - as I said earlier God is good. Despite the variety in my career I haven’t regretted leaving the corporate responsibilities. And I wouldn’t change a thing of what we did throughout my career.
Adjusting to a more flexible life pattern did take time and management with my wife, but our life together has grown.
The mentoring work I now do is my current calling and it is very satisfying to see God’s revelation in peoples’ lives; to see them discover more about themselves; to see them gain clearer vision of where they are going; to see change; to see hope dawn!!
Find your calling and do it!
CMA calls this next part of our lives Q4. Bob Buford refers to it a “half-time” – the opportunity to transition from “success to significance”.
The common elements are that God doesn’t waste anything – all He has given in our experience is useful for the rest of our life – and He has a plan for the rest of our life. It’s a matter of discovering what He has called us to . . . then doing it!
When we do; when we find that “sweet spot”; when we discover why He has placed us where we are now; the satisfaction is so rewarding.
Go for it!!