Men Need To Grow Up

Men’s ministry is full of examples pushing masculine things such as eating meat that someone hunted and killed, smoking cigars, starting a fire, or playing golf. There is nothing wrong with these things and men need to find more ways to connect and build community with other men but doing these things with a little word of scripture shoehorned in or vague references to Biblical manhood is not going to grow Godly men. Jesus has to enter a man or woman’s life in an immersive way to transform their thinking, their social interactions, their emotional proclivities, and their soul.

My favorite definition of followership to Jesus is from Dallas Willard. He states that the goal of spiritual formation is to become the kind of person that Jesus would be if he were me. 

Photo by cottonbro on

If Jesus was in my context, with my background, with my talents, with my opportunities, and with my education, what kind of person would he be? How would Jesus be a father if he was in my shoes? How would Jesus serve a spouse under the same circumstances? How would Jesus lead my small group? How would Jesus encourage a friend going through a tough time? We are not called to be Jesus, there is only one. We are called to be the Jesus that only we can be.

The example of Stephen in the New Testament is not mentioned enough. He is stated as being a “man full of faith and the Holy Spirit,” and being “full of grace and power.” This is the goal. This is the kind of man I need to be. No Beast Feast or camping trip is deep and rich enough to get me closer to this goal. I can only Grow Up through the power of Christ in my life, through exercises and training that allows him to work, and through a community that can challenge me and hold me accountable to achieving a Stephen-like life.

Men need a constant encounter with the transforming power of Christ. May nothing get in the way of that; not even well-intentioned men’s ministry.

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