For me, there is no better time than when a man comes alive in his faith. Don't get me wrong, anyone coming alive in their faith is a good thing. But when a man, father, or husband really comes alive in their faith, families are changed, churches are changed, and life as we know it is changed.
I've been to Promise Keepers, The Emmaus Walk, men's breakfast meetings, sat around many a campfire with men, watched Band of Brothers dozens of times, subscribe to several e-newsletters for men, and I get excited at what I read.
The talk is often a blend of Gen. George Patton, Rudy, and William Wallace of Braveheart. Men are always challenged to stay strong, fight the good fight, and take up arms to defeat Satan. And I agree we should.
Lately, however, I have had this gnawing feeling something is missing in that rhetoric and approach. And I've pondered and chewed on it for awhile and think I may have figured out what was bugging me.
Is it possible we are calling men to take up arms and fight the good fight and yet aren't equipping them to do so? Think about it, if we did not train troops with the best and most current tactics, armed them with the best equipment, made sure they had the best and brightest leaders that they would follow, and send them into battle, what would happen? They would get slaughtered.
I wonder if sometimes we are guilty of this in our churches. We sound the battle cry and yet haven't done our best to get men prepared. And as a result, we find many men like some who come into my office. They are weary, tired, beaten, defeated, and ready to surrender. Now I could pull a Patton on them and kick them in the behind and tell them to get back into the fight, but is that what they really need?
I think it's time to step back and take a good look at how we do men's ministry in our churches. I believe we need to get serious about building up male disciples starting at a young age. This takes clear, current, measurable training techniques. And we need to put the very best tools in their hands to know how to take on the ugly "stuff" that they will face in their life. And then we need to find the best, brightest, and most respected men to lead them. You know, guys that men love to follow. And when we send them into the fight, we need to make absolutely sure we have a place for them to come to when they are wounded. At our church M.A.S.H. unit we can care for them, encourage them, and bring them back to health.
If our men's ministries aren't making sure these things are intentionally happening, then we are more like another Gen. George. But his last name was Custer. And we know how that turned out.
It's time to make the change. Our men, our churches, and our nation are crying for it to happen. Any volunteers?