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Wednesday, September 27, 2006

I wanted to "cheat" a little and use one of the articles I recently sent to my church family here in TN. I think it is something that all men desperately need to read and a challenge that the Christian brothers should accept. I hope you'll agree.

Every Monday morning at 9 a.m., the RCC staff joins around my dining room table (aka the Ridgeview Conference room) for a time of staff planning. We begin each meeting with prayer and discussion regarding spiritual concerns facing our church family. There are prayers of thanksgiving, prayers for healing, prayers for direction, etc. There is one prayer concern that has been on our list for many months now and continues to be of the greatest concern to me. About half way down our prayer list is a request—“prayer on behalf of the RCC marriages.” You see, as I write this, I can think of several families in our church who are in the midst of spiritual warfare regarding their families. Sometimes the cause is financial. Other times it is because of communication. Sometimes the finger can be pointed at poor choices that one or the other spouses has made. Behind every cause is the enemy that we talk about so casually—Satan. He wants to destroy us, our families and our nation. He wants to see us living destroyed, defeated and chaotic lives. What better way to dismantle God’s plan for mankind than to attack one of the first gifts He ever gave us—marriage. Now, the reasons for my sharing this are two-fold. First, to remind all of us how important it is that we pray for each other. We are better together. There is no doubt about that. And my life and your life are made much easier when we are “knotted” together with others in prayer for each other. We should make it a daily commitment to pray for each other—that’s how you “do life together.” The second reason is directed specifically at the men. I can say this because I am one. When are we going to do what God has commissioned us to do as head of our families? When will we take responsibility for the physical safety, emotional stability and spiritual security of our families? How many of us are spending as much time on our knees praying as we are surfing the net or watching our favorite teams? When’s the last time we set aside a whole Saturday to invest in our kids or a whole weeknight to date our wives? Have we bought into the lie that more money and success will satisfy our families or bring them more fulfillment? Or, have we uncovered the truth that the best investment we make as men is in our own personal relationship with God? You see, most of the problems I see as a pastor (even with women who have gone through divorces) can be attributed to the abandonment of Godly principles by our men. When there is work to be done in the church, it is women who lead the way (especially when it comes to working with children). When there is praying to be done, women are considered to be our prayer warriors. When compassion is needed for someone in our community, it is the heart of a woman who drives the response. The question I must ask you is this: what kind of church would we be if our men spent as much time talking about faith as they spent talking about the Titans (and they aren’t even worth talking about these days)? Revival in our churches and victory over the enemy will only come by the hand of God. However, I am increasingly convinced that God is waiting on men who are completely surrendered to Him who will be used as catalysts for this movement. Will you join me in praying for a resurgence of Godly men in our fellowships? More importantly, if you are a man, will you join me in praying that God will use us to re-discover what being a real man is all about?

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