Monday, August 22, 2005
WWJD: Manly sports vs sissy churches
In particular, as I pointed out in another blog, Jesus attracted not only religious leaders like Nicodemus but rough men like Peter and John and "gangsters" like Matthew (tax collector). How much did we lose the way in attracting such "sinful" men? Whatever Jesus was doing, we aren't doing it now. WWJD: not anything our churches are doing. When churches are posting bouncers and requring cover charges (to limit the men coming in) while sports bars and topless bars are competing for leftover men or closing down due to lack of interests, then we could probably claim that we are doing what Jesus would do....
Update: during the weekends, you have a choice between manly sports vs sissy churches. Which do you (men or men you know) pick? Which would Jesus pick: unsaved rough men or "saved" feminized males?
Sunday, August 21, 2005
However, the Bible has no real concept of retirement. Only the priest seems to have a place for retirement (Num 8:25). Presumably one turned from a busy bee into a mentor and/or manager and then finally advisor to mentors/managers?
Fortunately, our church is trying to push volunteer ministry as a retirement goal. In the secular world there are groups like SCORE (Service Corps of Retired Executives), but they all deal with one topic (one specific ministry or service).
All too often our churches are focused only on religious element of life but Christ is about all of life not just church attendance. So men need to look out for all of life for their family especially as they raise their children. And when one turns into a retiree, the focus should be to mentoring and coaching and teaching the younger generation on all aspects of life. Since today's generations are much smaller (i.e., less children and less grandchildren) than previous ones, the retirees have less direct relatives to help out which means they should have more room (more time) to help out those who lack family "help." With fragmented (divorced or unmarried) families all around, retirees can help single fathers as well as become substitute fathers in single mother families (the only risk would be love blossoming between the retiree man and single mom).
Friday, August 19, 2005
What Men willing pay for, time and money
What else do men pay for? One-on-one or one-to-many challenges like sports (golf, basketball, shooting, etc.) or computer games (esp. online gaming). Action movies. Action and scifi novels. Superhero comics. Gambling and "investments" -- not necessarily men only but men are drawn by the risk and thrill of winning (much like sports). (Any others I'm missing?)
So, the challenge is how to draw such men into church and they would eventually willingly redirect their money and time for the glory of God! Jesus Christ drew such men to Himself and even made some into His disciples! Unfortunately, I don't think today's church has that "draw...."
Saturday, August 13, 2005
Movie Review: In Good Company
I would recommend it for fathers. It shows how easy it is for even intact families to lose touch with their children (Dan's eldest daughter starts going out with his boss, Carter, who's half Dan's age). Carter didn't have a father since 4 so he didn't get any man modelling and the movie showed him being a flake until Dan took Carter in sort of under Dan's wing (even though Carter supervised Dan).
I guess the defining moment for Carter was when Dan affirmed him as a "good man" -- all sons need to be named a Man and I thought the movie portrayed it well.
PG-13: Some sexual content and drug references [and some swear words!]
What the Church Must Do
- Become a Risky, Gutsy Church
We need to gain back what made Jesus attractive to non-intellectual men like fishermen and greed driven men like tax collectors.
- Find more Male Teachers
Fathers need to be trained to lead their sons at church and at home. The father's need to show that he values his son(s). Young men need to grow in the world of men, not kept in the pre-adult state/world and treated less than men. They need to be inducted into the world of men and brought up as adult trainees. Much like synagogues of the Jewish world!
- Develop Ministries Oriented Toward Young Alpha Males
Better yet, kick the girls out.
- Pitch Toward Men
Men, today, are willing to barge into bar/nightclubs (without the bouncers) and even pay cover charges. What could possibly make church be so attractive? (My point is not to turn church into nightclubs or vice versa but how to present truth in ways attractive to men the way "sinners" were attracted to Jesus Christ.)
- Avoid Putting Women in Leadership over Men
What's worse than a nagging wife is a nagging mother. What man wants to be under such a scenario on a voluntary basis? (Getting paid, one can bear it. Paying such a person -- via offering -- that's got to be crazy for most men.)
- Develop Male-Oriented Youth Groups
I would argue that it is the fathers who need to be trained into leading their youths: males as man and females as ladies.
- Encourage Man-to-man Accountability
- Make your Men's Group Practical and Meaningful
Weekly would be ideal (much like Boy Scouts) but on a father-son basis, not bunch of teens with token leaders.
- Create a Rite of Passage
Thursday, August 11, 2005
Bouncers at the church doors?
Once we make our churches masculine, we'll need to hire some bouncers to keep order in the church (or outside while waiting to get in). Since such a church would be attracting the "bad" elements of the society (just as Jesus Christ Himself did!), bouncers may be appropriate.
What an image: men clamering to get inside the church, guards outside keeping order of those waiting in line -- and maybe some (guards) inside, too!
Update: Drunken with the Holy Spirit and God's Word:
Concerning the prophets:(Jer 23:9)
My heart is broken within me;
all my bones tremble.
I am like a drunken man,
like a man overcome by wine,
because of the LORD
and his holy words.
Tuesday, August 09, 2005
Raising Godly Sons
Has not the LORD made them one? In flesh and spirit they are his. And why one? Because he was seeking godly offspring. So guard yourself in your spirit, and do not break faith with the wife of your youth. Malachi 2:15So, how to raise godly children, esp., for this blog, godly sons? Monkey see, monkey do so we (I) need to become godly before we can expect our sons to be one, too.
Fortunately, we have some glimps from the Bible:
Have nothing to do with godless myths and old wives' tales; rather, train yourself to be godly. For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come. 1 Tim 4:7,8And even better, why we should be godly:
For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men. It teaches us to say "No" to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, while we wait for the blessed hope—the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good. Titus 2:11-14Consequence of our godliness should be:
In fact, everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, while evil men and impostors will go from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. 2 Tim 3:12,13I must confess that I'm not being persecuted -- that is, not like the apostles or, say, the way recently converted Christians in Islamic nations are being persecuted.
(This blog entry was inspired after commenting at In Deo Veritas.)
Monday, August 08, 2005
Men's Worship: kick the women (and children) out
I believe that, if I recall correctly, during industrialization (or before) women were more available (i.e., not working in factories) so the church focused on recruiting women and children rather than the husband/fathers. As the church became more feminized, more men were turned off and in effect have kicked them out. The church focus was on numbers converted or baptized -- and things haven't changed much since the 19th century -- so counting the women and children were easier than trying to get men and having them counted. In the process, I believe, true discipleship got thrown out the door with the men -- and churches today still believe, delusionary, that they are discipling their people!
The question is how to turn couch potatos (who experiences manhood vicariously) into empowered men who is at most alive at church? Or turning men who high-fives over touch downs into high-fiving over a spiritual victory? The church needs to mentally kick out the women and children first and bring back in the men. The rest of the family (if he's turned into a real leader, not a dictator) will follow.