Yesterday I said the Church needs to man up, stop being so wussy.
That sounds wonderful, but as with most wonderful sounding Christian statements, what in the world does that mean?
Here are a couple things I think it means for the Church to toughen up, embrace tribulation, skip some comfort and pursue spiritual growth.
1) Play with sharp objects. Women would never teach their boys how to use a knife. This is a job for a man to do. It should be no revelation to you that God’s Word, the Bible, is described as being a sharp sword! Let the people in the Church learn to use the Bible. Most churches don’t do anything that even encourages people to bring a Bible, let alone use one. The Church service should be centered around the teaching of God’s Word. Teach people to use the Bible. Deal with the tough passages. Let them use some heretical beliefs while they grow to better doctrine. Don’t freak out and demand conformity; let people get hurt with the two-edged sword and be there to stitch the wounds of growth.
2) Sacrifice. One of the aspects of male physiology is that males typically do not experience pain as intensely as females. Men are typically equipped with more muscle. Macho men tend to use this to intimidate, rule and oppress. The true usage of the masculine powers is to protect and sacrifice for those in need. Christianity’s emphasis on love is often viewed very womanly (which has its place as well, but all too often seems to rule the day), rather than the sacrificial love of Christ. Churches should get better at getting men involved in sacrifice for others, using their strengths to protect, help and guide.
3. Self-Denial. Taking up your cross and following Christ is not easy. The Bible uses slaves, soldiers and athletes to describe the physical intensity of denying self and following Christ. The Church should teach and encourage self-denial and putting others first. When we come to see our needs as secondary, self-denial becomes automatic. Still tough, but tough is what causes growth.
I imagine I will be terribly misunderstood in this post. If you are offended by my views of male and female, here is my message for you–get over it.
There! I’m sure that helped.
There is a tenderness in the Church as well. I do not want to overemphasize the macho at the expense of the tender. I am merely pontificating on a trend that has been in the Church for many years. Church is often an environment more appealing for women than men. Women have always out-attended men at church.
The main reason why, in my opinion, is because we don’t encourage any sort of challenge or struggle. Men were built for challenge, to protect and serve. When the Church makes Christianity about group hugs and singing praise choruses, the male population has collectively said, “SEE YA!”
Any church that brought in, or made, real Christian men, would have women in it. I guarantee it! Men and women need each other to keep our tendencies in check. When the Church inordinately sways from one side, ignoring the other, it will never fulfill its role.
We’re too far to one side; I merely call for a re-centering. This is just one man’s opinion who is merely trying to help. If this post offends you, then let it go and never think of it again. It’s only trying to help.