Cross-Gender Mentoring with Dr. Leighton Ford and Dr. MaryKate Morse

Our theme for Season 2 of “A Sojourner’s Truth” podcast is mentoring. You can SUBSCRIBE on iTunesSpotify, and SoundCloud.


In this episode, Natasha speaks with global leaders, Dr. Leighton Ford and Dr. MaryKate Morse about cross-gender mentoring, specifically how we cultivate healthy mentoring relationships between women and men.

Dr. Leighton Ford, evangelist, author, social activist, leader, communicator and mentor, was singled out by Time Magazine as “among the most influential preachers of an active Gospel.” Dr. Ford is president of Leighton Ford Ministries. As an author, he has written 11 books. His most recent book is The Attentive Life. As a social activist, Dr. Ford has been an advocate for such issues as world hunger, poverty and racism. As a communicator, he has spoken to millions of people in scores of countries on every continent of the world. He is an ordained Presbyterian minister and was vice-president of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, where he served for 31 years. He was also a regular alternate speaker with Billy Graham, his brother-in-law, on the Hour of Decision, one of the most popular religious broadcasts of its time. As a leader, Dr. Ford serves as the Honorary Lifetime Chairman of the Lausanne Committee for World Evangelization, having served from 1976 to 1992 as chairman of this international body of Christian leaders.  His book, “Transforming Leadership,” is one of the most comprehensive books on leadership ever written.

When mentoring, I often ask God, “Who are you asking me to be? Who are you asking me to follow? Who are you asking me to serve?”

Dr. Leighton Ford

Dr. MaryKate Morse is Professor of Leadership and Spiritual Formation at Portland Seminary of George Fox University. Currently, she is the Lead Mentor for the Doctor of Ministry in Leadership & Spiritual Formation. Raised in the Air Force, MaryKate lived in various US states and overseas. She completed her BS in Secondary Education and English Literature at Longwood University in Virginia. Upon return she did a Masters in Biblical Studies and a Master of Divinity at Western Evangelical Seminary (now Portland Seminary). She began teaching, studied spiritual formation and spiritual direction, and was certified as a spiritual director and recorded as a pastor with the Evangelical Friends. MaryKate completed her doctorate at Gonzaga University where she studied the characteristics of renewal leadership as modeled by Jesus. After her doctorate she planted two churches and served in various administrative positions at the university including Seminary Associate Dean, Director of Hybrid programs, and University Director of Strategic Planning. She is a spiritual director and leadership mentor and coach, conference and retreat speaker, and author including Making Room for Leadership: Power, Space, and Influence and A Guidebook to Prayer.

Mentoring Nugget: Just W.A.I.T. I ask myself, “Why Am I Talking?”

Dr. MaryKate Morse (Twitter Connection:
@MaryKateMorse )

RECOMMENDED RESOURCES:

Transforming Leadership by Dr. Leighton Ford

Making Room for Leadership by MaryKate Morse

Also, check out these other resources by our featured guests:

A Guidebook to Prayer by MaryKare Morse

The Attentive Life by Leighton Ford

There is a Crisis Happening at our Border

I am a black mother of a black child in America, and that means that I carry an abnormal desire not only to ensure my child’s safety but to actively pursue and defend it. I learned this from my ancestors. From the time I was a child, I’ve been made aware of this burden.

 

Harlem Renaissance poet, Langston Hughes, informed us in his poem, “Mother to Son,”

 

Well, son, I’ll tell you:

Life for me ain’t been no crystal stair.

It’s had tacks in it,

And splinters,

And boards torn up,

And places with no carpet on the floor—

Bare,

But all the time

I’se been a-climbin’ on,

And reachin’ landin’s,

And turnin’ corners,

And sometimes goinn’ in the dark

Where there ain’t been no light.[1]

 

This is a narrative of a woman who is not wanted in her country, and yet she wants the best for her son. She tells him that in spite of her reality and the ever-present darkness in her life, he must keep going, he must not turn back, he must not fall, and he must continue to climb higher.

 

She keeps climbing because she wants a better life for herself and her son. That’s what all decent humans want for their offspring, a better life and the opportunity to keep climbing in spite of the darkness.

biracial children

As I reflect on this artistic work, I am reminded of the human need and desire to survive. I am also heartbroken by the mothers who have similar words to say to their children, but maybe now they are saying it with a little less hope or maybe their children can no longer hear their voices at all because they have been separated.

Continue reading at Missio Alliance.

[1] Langston Hughes, “Mother to Son” from Collected Poems. Copyright © 1994 by The Estate of Langston Hughes. Poetry Foundation. https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/47559/mother-to-son

Wakanda, Blackness, and the Kingdom of God

Black Panther poster

Like so many others, black people in particular, I have waited for the “Black Panther” movie for a long time. I was not a comic book reader as a kid, but the Marvel universe and its heroes have grown on me. Regarding this particular hero and story, my recent trips to Africa gave me a desire to see more of the continent’s beauty brought to the big screen for all the world to see. Additionally, I am a fan of many of the all-star cast’s bodies of work. The line-up included Academy Award winners Forest Whitaker and Lupita Nyong’o, Academy nominees Daniel Kaluuya and (my favorite) Angela Bassett, Chadwick Boseman, Michael B. Jordan, and break-out performances by Letitia Wright and Danai Gurira.

I love that this movie allows the world to see and celebrate a world where a community’s black identity is good all by itself. And I love how this movie gives us glimpses of our forgotten church history, including the present and future kingdom of God.

In Wakanda, Black Identity is “Very Good”

Upon my first viewing of the film, I thought, “This is what some white people in America are afraid of…”

Continue reading at Missio Alliance.