Christian men are unpredictably dangerous. What do you do with guys whose allegiance is to Someone who can’t be seen or heard; Someone who by His very nature wants people to live “by faith”? Christ-following men – men who read God’s Word, who spend time with God in prayer and who are open to the leading of the Holy Spirit – are dangerous, because you can’t know where the Lord is taking them… but you can trust them.
Imagine the poor pastor who has given his trust to his men. Those guys go and have a men’s ministry meeting and all of a sudden, they are coming to him with this grand plan to do this or that. He cups his face in his hands and slowly shakes his head. The real problem is that for all the pitfalls, these guys will pull it off. He knows their hearts and sees them seeking God in all of it, and yes, they are going to stumble and fall, but they are learning to obey their Heavenly Father. How bad can that be?
Well, pretty bad. Too often we give our trust without doing the due-diligence. The pastor, elder, deacon overseer doesn’t actually get to know his men. He stands with them but from afar. He sees what they do but doesn’t know who they are. He’d like to get to know them better, but hasn’t got the time. And when it comes to building relationships with men, it’s all about investing your time with them.
Men bond while doing things together. Whether it’s cooking a church breakfast, serving on the worship team, doing church maintenance, working on a church committee or serving in ministry, men are building relationships. They don’t even have to talk to each other. Put them in the same room doing something and they are measuring each other. They are watching how the other guy accomplishes his task. Is he diligent to the details? Is he taking shortcuts? Is he putting in 110%? Is his conversation God-honouring? Is he frustrated? Does he follow through on what he says? Men measure each other in weird ways, but get them together doing something and they are building relationships.
That’s why pastors and church leaders need to spend time with their men – they will come to understand them. And, with understanding comes trust, and with trust comes responsibility, and with responsibility comes opportunity, and with opportunity comes authority, and with authority comes creativity, and with creativity there must be accountability. Great leaps forward in the Church, be it locally or globally, happen because those in authority trust those they lead. Men want and need this trust.
Christian men are unpredictably dangerous, but they need to be trusted because the Lord God Almighty is working through them to establish His Kingdom in ways we can’t even understand.
And, what does this mean for CSB and Iron Sharpens Iron? Well, CSB is the perfect training ground for men who are establishing their credibility within their congregations and with their leaders. Give men five years of ministering to boys and you’ll have men who can minister to anyone.
As for ISI, it’s a food court for men seeking spiritual nourishment. It builds the man as it builds his relationship with peers from his own congregation. It is doing something important together. Men bond when doing something together. And they build on this to accomplish the plans God has for them. And this builds the Church and the local congregation.
Men are a force to be harnessed and released. Now that’s a dangerous notion.