Men’s ministry is not just important, it’s imperative.
Men need strengthening through community and encouragement as well as a major boost of faith, in God, in themselves and in one another.
'Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong.'
1 Corinthians 16:13
Male bashing has been a daily exercise of the media in one form or another. Men need to be in a place where masculinity is celebrated, not denigrated. Men should not feel they need to apologise for their maleness.
Masculinity must be developed through men simply getting together. Young boys get to see strong role models and even grown men get to see images of how to do life better.
Even within the church, masculinity needs emphasising. Much of the church’s culture is around feminine, or mothering ideals, such as nurturing, comforting and empathising, rather than the more masculine concepts of maximising potential, competitiveness, strengthening and increasing resilience in life.
Men need to know they are engaged in a purpose that calls on them to win against the odds, against the devil, against opposition. This awakening helps men become secure in their identity and their life calling.
'Proclaim this among the nations: “Prepare for war! Wake up the mighty men, Let all the men of war draw near, Let them come up. 10 Beat your plowshares into swords And your pruning hooks into spears; Let the weak say, ‘I am strong.’'
Oftentimes men need ministry but are reluctant to seek it out in a mixed environment. When men are able to get away together, there is not such a difficulty in men reaching out for assistance in life.
The men’s ministry in C3, Realmen, has always been important to me. More recently I have been increasingly burdened with the rising level of suicides in Australia, the majority of which are by far, men.
We must do all we can to help men in their emotional, mental and spiritual lives.
We need to help fathers and sons in their respective roles. Fathers raise children very differently to mothers. Both are essential to the raising of healthy children. Most family breakdowns involve the father leaving - we must support fathers so they know they are in a community that can guide, help and strengthen them for the tough days of family life.
Malachi the prophet says in the last days ministers will turns hearts of fathers to their children. This presupposes that they had been estranged before:
'And he will turn The hearts of the fathers to the children, And the hearts of the children to their fathers, Lest I come and strike the earth with a curse.'
The curse upon the Earth because of family breakdown is immense; ranging form poverty, drug use, criminality and suicide.
I personally love the Realmen Retreat because of the great amount of fun we have together. I love meeting new members of our church, and the sense of men doing life together, even if it is just for a weekend, is very encouraging.
'Behold, how good and how pleasant it is For brethren to dwell together in unity! It is like the precious oil upon the head, Running down on the beard, The beard of Aaron, Running down on the edge of his garments. It is like the dew of Hermon, Descending upon the mountains of Zion; For there the Lord commanded the blessing— Life forevermore.'
The Realmen Retreat is held on Friday 24 + Saturday 25 August 2018 at Merroo Christian Centre, Sydney. For more information head to realmengathering.com.