Table of ContentsChapter One Lynell: Unconditional Love Chapter Two Mentors Lean In When It Hurts Chapter Three Michelle: Showing Up Chapter Four Mentors Play the Long Game Chapter Five Emily: Investing without a Return Chapter Six Mentors Pour into Their People Chapter Seven Kay: Stories Have Purpose Chapter Eight Mentors Get Comfortable with Pain Chapter Nine Harriet: Mentoring with Legacy Chapter Ten Mentors Foster Community Chapter Eleven Lucy: Prioritizing Relationships Chapter Twelve Mentors Lead at Home Chapter Thirteen Karen: Thriving in Hardship Chapter Fourteen Mentors Can Look Different Than The Mold Chapter Fifteen Catherine: Living Abundantly Chapter Sixteen Mentors Fight for Your Future Chapter Seventeen Anne: Pairing Passion with Purpose Chapter Eighteen Mentors Propel Your Career Chapter Nineteen My Tribe: Learning while Leading Chapter Twenty Mentors Need Mentors 1. Lynell: Unconditional Love Lynell is a fixture of the author’s childhood, her best friend’s mother, and, in many ways, the mother she didn’t have. Lynell’s daughter and Chapman experienced a falling out as teenagers when Chapman became overly judgmental in her newfound faith, but Lynell was able to encourage Chapman through her immaturity and extend to her the grace that she wasn’t giving to her friend, Lynell’s daughter. Readers will learn how to recognize those who are patient with our immaturity and how that grace can be extended to those in our own circle of influence. 2. Mentors Lean In When It Hurts Chapman’s childhood was unstable in so many ways that she regularly escaped to the houses of friends and neighbors for some sense of stability. Lynell mentored Chapman through the pain and confusion of her teenage years, lending support and encouragement without complicating the situation. When Chapman became a Young Life leader in college, she was able to pull from the lessons Lynell taught her about how to maintain a constant and unbiased presence in the lives of those you love. The reader will learn how to identify those who have led with unconditional love and will be encouraged to look at how they lean in when stepping into the role of a mentor. 3. Michelle: Showing Up At the height of Chapman’s mother’s dysfunction in high school, her Aunt Michelle became the calm place in the raging storm. Every Thursday after school, Chapman would go to her Aunt Michelle’s house, where she was greeted with a place at the table and quality time. Michelle invested in Chapman, saw the places of neglect, and was able to speak into the wounds of their family without alienating either side. The reader will identify those who have shown up with consistency and discover the importance of investing in those you lead consistently. 4. Mentors Play the Long Game Every family has ups and downs, but not every family recovers. While Chapman’s Aunt could have turned a cold shoulder, she chose instead to pour into the author’s story, even if their beliefs didn’t align on every issue. The reader will discover the value of gathering people around the table to focus on relationship, rather than places of disagreement. 5. Emily: Investing without a Return Mentors don’t always come from a place of authority. During the author’s high school years, she became involved in Young Life. Emily was her Young Life leader, and every Monday night hosted twelve bratty teenagers with a seven-layer cheese dip. Emily used her time and limited finances as a student to invest in a room full of girls who were more concerned with their budding social calendars and driver’s permits than learning to love others. She also planted a seed in each girl, including Chapman, that would grow over time. This story invites the reader to ask themselves: “Are we willing to invest in those we are mentoring without an immediate return?” 6. Mentors Pour into Their People It is because of Emily that the author became a Young Life leader in college. As Chapman dealt with the same type of crazy, rude, immature, and broken high schoolers during her time as a leader, she realized for the first time the sacrifice Emily had made for her. Sometimes, we don’t see the longevity of the sacrifices we make, but they often come full circle. 7. Kay: Stories Have Purpose When you grow up in a broken family, it’s always a comfort to find someone who actually gets it. Kay was that person for Chapman. Though the author remembers nothing about the Bible study Kay led, she does remember everything about her connection with Kay. Through Chapman’s friendship with Kay, the author highlights that while our stories are not unique, they often allow us to use our pain for purpose, to speak into the lives of those we mentor, and to relay the message “You are not alone in your pain.” 8. Mentors Get Comfortable with Pain You can’t effectively mentor someone else through a painful season until you’ve worked through your own pain. Through Kay, the author was able to see an example of someone who had done the hard work to heal from a traumatic childhood and use their story to be a light for the next generation of women. She helped mend pieces of Chapman’s story and inspired the author to use her testimony for something bigger. The reader will be invited to ask the questions, “How can I use my pain for purpose? How can I use my story to walk alongside women navigating similar issues?” 9. Harriet: Mentoring with Legacy With the weight of leadership heavy on Chapman’s shoulders, she began to learn the value of seeking out the kind of life she wanted and asking for help. Enter Harriet. Harriet was the mother of a high school friend, but her role in the author’s life became pivotal when Chapman mentored her daughter, Laura Grace, in her Young Life group. Harriet and her husband were central figures in the author’s neighborhood and were known for fostering community and having people around their table. When the author invested in Harriet’s daughter’s life, she turned around and invested in Chapman with weekly dinners and coffee dates. Harriet understood the value of encouragement so that Chapman could give back to others. 10. Mentors Foster Community Mentors aren’t afraid to offer advice and ask questions when they don’t know the answer. When Chapman became a mentor herself, Harriet taught her that it was still okay to not know everything and to seek counsel to be a more effective leader. Though Harriet was the author’s senior, she leveled the playing field by forming a relationship and inviting Chapman into her world. In doing this, the author was given an example of the type of mother and community member she desired to grow into. 11. Lucy: Prioritizing Relationships Lucy showed the author that she could have it all. As a young Christian woman, Chapman felt the societal pull to choose either family or career. Lucy was the attentive mother of a little boy that the author babysat throughout her college years while also being a career woman. Lucy had her doctorate and excelled in every area of her life, but her relationships were her primary focus. 12. Mentors Lead at Home Lucy taught the author that the most important work a person can do begins with their own family: their own inner circle. When she wasn’t out conquering the world as a college advisor, she was busy being a dedicated wife and mother of three. Chapman witnessed firsthand what a healthy family looked like, one that didn’t shy away from communication and brush uncomfortable topics under the rug. When we’re responsible first with what we’ve been given, we develop the resilience and capacity to grow our leadership outside the home. 13. Karen: Thriving in Hardship Newlywed Chapman and her husband had been attending a highly dysfunctional church, but they felt that God had called them to stay for a season. Karen and her husband were on the church staff, and she knew of the author’s pain. Instead of rejecting Chapman for not feeling at home in that church, Karen shared with Chapman her own struggles and taught her not to sit on the sidelines, but rather, to get involved when you want to create change. 14. Mentors Can Look Different than the Mold Meeting Karen was like a breath of fresh air; Karen showed the author that she didn’t have to fit the mold to follow Jesus and that one can successfully live in the world without being of the world. Not only did she walk the author through that hard season, Karen prepared Chapman for the next big leap she would take. 15. Catherine: Living Abundantly In December of 2015, the Chapmans packed up their tiny apartment in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, and hauled their belongings to Colorado Springs, Colorado, where they felt called to plant roots in their best friends’ church and community. Despite her adventurous approach to life, Chapman quickly realized the move was exposing holes in her marriage, lies she had been listening to since she was a child, and feelings of anxiety that felt too big to wrestle. The author met Catherine in a season that was crucial to her destiny. It was through Catherine that the author realized, more important than carrying out our calling is how our hearts are positioned in doing so. This chapter poses the question to the reader, “Do we have someone who will lead us to a place of wholeness so that we can lead with longevity and steward our souls in a spiritually healthy way?” 16. Mentors Fight for Your Future The start of the author’s time in Colorado was marked by a horrific job for a Christian public figure who had created a toxic work environment. During the same time she held this job, the author was building her online business-coaching career and debating the leap into entrepreneurship. Catherine helped Chapman experience spiritual and emotional healing, and Catherine fought for Chapman’s future with surety that gave the author the confidence to heal wounds of the past, so that she would be healthy enough to step out on her own. 17. Anne: Pairing Passion with Purpose Chapman had grown her online business to a place where she could match her salary and quit her terrible day job, but she was running hard in a million different directions. When she joined Anne’s business mastermind, she was given a safe space to bounce around ideas, seek counsel, and hone her craft with the help of someone who had gone before her. It was Anne who allowed her to see that often our passion can be used in a way that is purposeful and beneficial to others. The reader will benefit from reflecting on who has helped them to uncover their passions, and ultimately their purpose. 18. Mentors Propel Your Career Anne taught the author how to mentor in the business space in an open handed way. Rather than adopt a mindset of competition, Anne generously gave Chapman new information and best practices, so that she could work effectively from a place of rest, rather than constantly striving. 19. My Tribe: Learning while Leading The women the author listed thus far have been some of the biggest influences in her life to date, but they will not be her only mentors. Chapman has mentors in friendship, mentors in business, mentors in marriage, and hopefully, future mentors in parenthood. None of them made an impact in her life because they were perfect or had everything figured out. Instead, they taught Chapman the value of support, consistency, and accountability through their vulnerability and willingness to learn. In her own spheres of influence, the author aims to lead from the standpoint of linking arms with other women because of the examples she has seen modeled for her. 20. Mentors Need Mentors If there’s one lesson the author has seen time and time again in her mentoring relationships, it’s that mentors need mentors to be effective and continuously grow. Without emotional stability and agility, women won’t have the tools to pour into the people God places in our lives. So, as the reader stewards the influence they have been given, the hopes of the author would be that she will continue to seek out advice and leadership from those who display the qualities she wants to embody, in hopes that she can pass that wisdom along to someone else down the road.