Kerrie Sheaves helps her husband with a Men’s Ministry in Sydney called Men In Action. She “lays down the gauntlet” on her blog about why it is critical for Churches to be more involved in out reach to men.
I am passionate about Men – your men, and mine… Imagine a world full of men who are fulfilling their God given purpose.
Men who are proactive instead of reactive, men who are filled with purpose and passion for the things of God, men who rush to participate in the mission of the local church, a church so flooded with men wanting to serve the body that the pastor only needs set the direction of the church and show up on Sunday to preach his sermon. Men who set good priorities, and balance their commitments at work, with their family life. Men who do jobs they love even if it doesn’t lead to riches and glory. Men who love their wives passionately showing actively how much they cherish you, and your children.
… We need to realise that to be great women, we need great women in our lives, but we also need great men – why because we were built for partnership, I’m not talking about marriage, I’m saying that the church needs both men and women to fulfull their God given purposes and be the best they can be. Men and Women were made to partner in the Gospel. So we need men – but they’re leaving the Church in droves, and those that are there, are barely flickering, when they should be blazing inferno’s for Christ.
… I’ve too often in the last few years seen women in churches shut men’s ministry down, making it impossible for their husbands and other men in the church to participate in men’s activities and programs. The message is clear to the men of those churches, Men are not important in this church, and we don’t believe that investing in discipling them is of any value, why do we need to do anything separate or special for the men. Behind that are a handful of strong outspoken women who are fearful and selfish. My question to you is: Are you one of them? Or are you simply discouraging the men in your life more subtly through your actions and words?
… if we ask ourselves honestly aren’t we living a life that nurses disappointment about the fact that the men in our lives display in the main inactivity, a lack of: strength, self control and Godly leadership? And we know that if they really tried they could do it, but what’s more disappointing is that they don’t seem to want to try at all. We think that they don’t notice how we feel about that. But they do, they sense it in your tone of voice and your increasing efforts to take control. It gives them a simple message: you are not enough for her and nothing you do is right – you are a disappointment.
… Why do we try to control our men, do we think that by this method we will achieve what we want. We curse them for making us feel like we have one more kid to manage, when in reality we undermine their confidence in their ability to be any of the things we desire them to be.
… For the first 10 years of our married life I was secretly afraid that if I allowed Tim to spend time with his male friends having fun, that soon he’d rather be with them than me. We had plenty of time together (quantity) but there wasn’t a lot of quality time, neither of us did things we had passion for, hobbies or sports or interests apart from each other. How many of you know that even though you love each other, deep down you know you’re not enough for each other, that you’re lonely and you know that you’re husband is lonely too?
At Men In Action we’ve discovered that Men who spend time with other good men in their lives, come back to their wives and families better men, eager to spend time (quality time) with you, and your children. We have wives who seek us out to thank us for helping their husbands come alive, and become more engaged in their homes.
The secret is that they get out regularly to spend time doing activities that they enjoy, with men that build them up and encourage them. These are relational groups, not evangelistic 3 point sermon outreach events.
It is a long article, for a blog post, but it’s worth your time reading it. If you’re a bloke, why not read through it with some mates and discuss the points raised? Maybe you can come up with some ideas to engage your brothers-in-arms. If you’re a woman, why not read through it at your next catch up with the girls and pray for the guys in your life to be enabled, by God, to be real, godly men.
Does your Church have a men’s ministry? What have you found to be most effective in reaching and connecting with other men inside and outside the Church?