Men http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men Fri, 31 Oct 2014 00:55:40 -0400 Joomla! - Open Source Content Management en-gb 9 Things Men Seek at Church http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men/21185-9-things-men-seek-at-church http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men/21185-9-things-men-seek-at-church

I am often asked, "Why are the men leaving the church today?" Sometimes it comes out as, "What can we do to keep the men of this church?" or "How can our church reach more men?"

There is no easy answer, but in this article I would like to provide some basic principles that will help you develop a male-friendly church. The overriding principle is simply this:

The environment you develop is more important than the events or programs you put on. A man is looking for an environment that is consistent with who he is as a man and a place where he feels comfortable belonging and becoming the man God wants him to be.

1. Relevance. Most men in our society today do not see the value of going to church because it is not speaking their language, and it is not addressing the issues they face. For example, a recent survey showed that 92 percent of church-going men have never heard a sermon on the subject of work. The unspoken message is: What you do for 60 to 70 hours a week does not relate to what you do on Sunday mornings. The most important issues for men are their work, family, marriage, sexuality and finances—and rarely are these addressed from the pulpit today? Some of the key questions men are asking are:

  • What is true masculinity?
  • What is success?
  • How do I deal with guilt feelings?
  • What is male sexuality?
  • Is purity possible today?
  • What does a healthy marriage look like?
  • How can I raise my children to be successful?
  • How can I be a man of integrity in the workplace?
  • How can I be a leader in the home, church, workplace and world?
  • What is my purpose in life?

2. To be involved in a cause greater than themselves. Men want to be involved in something driven by a compelling vision. Men want to know what hill the church is climbing, where we are going, what we are about. The church has the greatest and most far-reaching mission on Earth, and we should not be bashful about challenging the men of our congregation with it.

3. A shot at greatness. I have never met a man who wanted to be a failure or a loser. Men want to win. They want to be heroes. They want to come in first. Unfortunately, it seems the church today wants nice men, not great men.

4. To be challenged. Men tend to view the world around them as something to be overcome or conquered. It's high time we told them they do not have to check their competitive drive at the door of the church. If they are seeking risk, adventure, change, competition and expansion—tell them how to find it within the mission of Jesus.

5. Action. Men today are looking for something to do; they do not like sitting around and theorizing about the 27 views of the second coming of Christ! Men measure themselves by productivity and gain a portion of self-image based on what they do. Their desire for adventure is often expressed in the desire to be on the solution side of things. Many churches today are in maintenance mode, rather than being missional.

6. Men are looking for leaders, and they want to be leaders. This principle is simple: Men do not follow programs, they follow men. They want to follow a bold, courageous, visionary leader. Establish an environment where strong leadership is attractive. Not only are men looking for a leader to follow, they want to become leaders themselves. They want to lead in their family, workplace, church, community and world. One of the things you can do is equip them to lead.

7. Fun. If men walk into a church and see a bunch of serious, stoic-looking people, shouldn't they wonder if Christianity really is a killjoy? The world is a serious place; men are looking to laugh and have fun to balance that reality. They love a good joke, funny story or movie. I encourage you to develop a ministry environment in which men have fun together.

8. Brothers. Most men have many acquaintances, but very few men have a good friend. According to statistics, the average man over 35 years old does not have one close friend. Men need teaching on how to develop and strengthen friendships and an environment where they can find genuine male friends.

9. Healing. Many are using socially unacceptable means to deal with their pain—making their work or their hobbies their life, misusing sex, drugs or alcohol. Unless these wounds and hurts are dealt with in a healthy way, they will never become the man that God wants them to be. They will never be able to have healthy relationships or move on from childish behavior.

I hope some of these insights from my own ministry to men will serve you well as you seek to minister more effectively to the men of your church and community.

Steve Sonderman is the associate pastor for men's ministry at Elmbrook Church in Brookfield, Wis., and the author of How to Build a Life-Changing Men's Ministry.

For the original article, visit men.ag.org.

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shawn.akers@charismamed.com (Steve Sonderman) Men Mon, 01 Sep 2014 16:00:00 -0400
The Surprising Key To Successful Men’s Ministry http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men/20991-the-surprising-key-to-successful-men-s-ministry http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men/20991-the-surprising-key-to-successful-men-s-ministry

Over the years, reaching men with the gospel has been an important but challenging effort. From the early days when Edwin Louis Cole launched the Christian Men's Network, to Coach Bill McCartney's Promise Keepers, hundreds of thousands of men have been transformed, and yet momentum has been difficult at best.

But now, a local pastor with a national media ministry is turning "men's ministry" on its head. G. Allen Jackson, pastor of World Outreach Church in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, has taken his experience leading one of the largest churches in America and re-thought exactly what it means to reach men in the 21st century. That strategy is culminating in the "Mighty Men Conference" featuring G. Allen Jackson and Angus Buchan in Nashville on November 23. I had the opportunity to discuss the subject recently with Pastor Jackson, and here's what happened:

Phil Cooke:  What we call "Men's Ministry" is alive and well, but it's not in the headlines much anymore. In the 1980's and 90's it exploded and culminated with Promise Keepers, which was one of the biggest movements of its time. What going on today?

Allen Jackson: Promise Keepers seemed to be a "God initiative." I know many worked hard to see Coach's vision become a reality, but the outcome exceeded imaginations. I believe it served a purpose for a season, calling men to an awareness of their roles as men of faith. Ultimately the church must be awakened to this message because events alone will not sustain the momentum.

PC: Have you always placed a priority on reaching men through World Outreach Church?

AJ: We have always recognized the significance of men engaging with faith. As our congregation has grown, the expressions of that idea have changed consistently. For too long men imagined their primary role in church to be a decision maker/committee member. The activity of ministry was often not imagined to be of sufficient significance to attract the focus of capable men. We recognized men needed to be invited towards a meaningful, challenging interaction with God and His people. Faith demands results. Men will respond to this awareness.

PC: What do you see happening in the culture today that gives you an urgency to reach men with the gospel?

AJ: We live in a cyclone of confusion—confusion regarding ethics, life objectives, morality, faith, our place in the world; many things. Godly men make a difference. Godly men choose to develop character, not just be a character. Godly men provide leadership for younger generations. Duty, honor, responsibility and sacrifice are concepts required for healthy homes, churches and cultures. Permanent adolescence is not fulfilling; it is avoidance. We are created as image bearers of Almighty God, to make a difference for His Kingdom in our world.

PC:  You appear to have captured a wide range of men - not just a certain segment or interest group.   What's the key to connecting with such a wide variety of men?

AJ: Effective ministry to men, in my opinion, is rooted in a constant awareness of the impact of ministry on men as an integral part of the life of the congregation and therefore the Kingdom assignment of the community. We built nursery spaces that would appeal to men as well as children because we asked men to serve with the children. We want to integrate men and all they represent into the life of church. We do occasional events with a focus for men, but these are an expression of ministry that is occurring routinely.

PC: How did you meet Angus Buchan, and why do you teach so well together?

AJ: I met Angus in Jerusalem. We had both been invited to speak at a Feast of Tabernacles Celebration. I was so impressed with his dynamic love for Jesus that I wanted to meet him. I think we made a connection because of a shared commitment to the Kingdom. Angus is anointed as an evangelist. People respond, in a truly remarkable way, when he shares a Jesus story. I am able to provide a context and rational for what we are working towards. God seems to have placed us together for this season. It is His initiative.

PC: Angus has massive men's outreaches in South Africa.  Why does his message connect so well with men?

AJ: Men recognize the genuine faith in Angus. We have seen so many pretenders. Angus is not polished; you do not feel as if he is manipulating you. Angus speaks with a sincerity and confident faith that enables men and women to imagine they could have a meaningful relationship with Jesus. He does not present theological principles for consideration. He invites people to live their faith today. For many the invitation is a great blessing.

PC: If you could say one thing to encourage more pastors to be intentional about reaching men in their community, what would it be?

AJ: Ministering to men is a skill set; it is not mysterious. Do not isolate ministry to men to an occasional weekend or event when there is a male oriented topic. Become conscious that every ministry experience needs to add value and opportunity for the men you are leading.

PC: What's next for Allen Jackson and World Outreach Church?

AJ: I believe we have an opportunity to see an awakening within the American church. I am a pastor; my heart is for the people who are searching for hope. Becoming a Christ follower does not diminish your life experience; it will dramatically improve the quality of your life. We are busy looking for opportunities to tell the Jesus story and to develop tools that will enable others to live free.

Phil Cooke, Ph.D. is the founder of The Influence Lab (influencelab.com).

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shawn.akers@charismamed.com (Phil Cooke) Men Mon, 16 Jun 2014 16:00:00 -0400
Why Are Men Leaving the Church? http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men/20422-why-are-men-leaving-the-church http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men/20422-why-are-men-leaving-the-church

I am often asked, “Why are the men leaving the church today?” Sometimes it comes out as “What can we do to keep the men of this church?” or “How can our church reach more men?” There is no easy answer, but in this article I would like to provide some basic principles that will help you develop a male-friendly church.

The overriding principle is simply this: The environment you develop is more important than the events or programs you put on. A man is looking for an environment that is consistent with who he is as a man and is a place where he feels comfortable belonging and becoming the man God wants him to be.

1. Men are looking for relevance. Most men in our society today do not see the value of going to church because it is not speaking their language and it is not addressing the issues they face. For example, a recent survey showed that 92 percent of churchgoing men have never heard a sermon on the subject of work. The unspoken message is "What you do for 60 to 70 hours a week does not relate to what you do on Sunday mornings." The most important issues for men are their work, family, marriage, sexuality and finances—and rarely are these addressed from the pulpit today. Some of the key questions men are asking are:

  • What is true masculinity?
  • What is success?
  • How do I deal with guilt feelings?
  • What is male sexuality?
  • Is purity possible today?
  • What does a healthy marriage look like?
  • How can I raise my children to be successful?
  • How can I be a man of integrity in the workplace?
  • How can I be a leader in the home, church, workplace and world?
  • What is my purpose in life? 

2. Men want to be involved in a cause greater than themselves. Men want to be involved in something driven by a compelling vision. Men want to know what hill the church is climbing, where we are going and what we are about. The church has the greatest and most far-reaching mission on earth, and we should not be bashful about challenging the men of our congregation with it.

3. Men want a shot at greatness. I have never met a man who wanted to be a failure or a loser. Men want to win. They want to be heroes. They want to come in first. Unfortunately, it seems the church today wants nice men, not great men.

4. Men want to be challenged. Men tend to view the world around them as something to be overcome or conquered. It’s high time we told them they do not have to check their competitive drive at the door of the church. If they are seeking risk, adventure, change, competition and expansion—tell them how to find it within the mission of Jesus.

5. Men are looking for action. Men today are looking for something to do; they do not like sitting around and theorizing about the 27 views of the second coming of Christ. Men measure themselves by productivity and gain a portion of self-image based on what they do. Their desire for adventure is often expressed in the desire to be on the solution side of things. Many churches today are in maintenance mode rather than being missional.

6. Men are looking for leaders and want to be leaders. This principle is simple: Men do not follow programs; they follow men. They want to follow a bold, courageous, visionary leader. Establish an environment where strong leadership is attractive. Not only are men looking for a leader to follow, but they also want to become leaders themselves. They want to lead in their family, workplace, church, community and world. One of the things you can do is equip them to lead.

7. Men are looking to have fun. If men walk into a church and see a bunch of serious, stoic-looking people, shouldn’t they wonder if Christianity really is a killjoy? The world is a serious place; men are looking to laugh and have fun to balance that reality. They love a good joke, funny story or movie. I encourage you to develop a ministry environment in which men have fun together.

8. Men are looking for brothers. Most men have many acquaintances, but very few men have a good friend. According to statistics, the average man over 35 years old does not have one close friend. Men need teaching on how to develop and strengthen friendships, and they need an environment where they can find genuine male friends.

9. Men are looking for healing. Many are using socially unacceptable means to deal with the pain—making their work or their hobbies their life or misusing sex, drugs or alcohol. Unless these wounds and hurts are dealt with in a healthy way, they will never become the men God wants them to be. They will never be able to have healthy relationships or move on from childish behavior.

I hope some of these insights from my own ministry to men will serve you well as you seek to minister more effectively to the men of your church and community.

Steve Sonderman is the associate pastor for men’s ministry at Elmbrook Church in Brookfield, Wisc., and the author of How to Build a Life-Changing Men’s Ministry.

For the original article, visit men.ag.org.

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shawn.akers@charismamed.com (Steve Sonderman/For AG Men) Men Wed, 16 Oct 2013 13:00:00 -0400
The 6 W’s of Men’s Discipleship http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men/20415-the-6-w-s-of-men-s-discipleship http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men/20415-the-6-w-s-of-men-s-discipleship

After decades of building my weekly rhythms around small group discipleship in Manila, the past few years splitting time between Nashville, Manila, and Delta airlines have been quite frustrating regarding small group discipleship. With a fresh resolve, I’m starting again.

I’ve met with a small group of men at Starbucks for discipleship. This was my first meeting with this group.

Here are the six essential W’s to discipling men:

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shawn.akers@charismamed.com (Steve Murrell) Men Fri, 11 Oct 2013 20:00:00 -0400
James Robison: The Solution to a Fatherless Generation http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men/19892-james-robison-the-solution-to-a-fatherless-generation http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men/19892-james-robison-the-solution-to-a-fatherless-generation

Column-RobisonStatistics show that 34 percent of American children live apart from their fathers, and half of all children will be fatherless at some point during childhood.

I grew up without a father figure, but at a young age God took me under His wing. By His power, I escaped many negative effects of fatherlessness but still bore some scars. I never heard, “That’s good, son. Nice catch. Nice throw. Nice anything.”

God created us in His image to be His children. In the garden, Adam and Eve enjoyed intimate fellowship with their Father and lived under His care. Then the deceiver enticed them. The children bought the lie and forfeited the relationship. They were suddenly afraid of their Father and foolishly tried to cover their shame with mere fig leaves. This was the first futile attempt on the part of fallen man to deal with the sinful, adverse effect of being deceived by the father of lies.

God the Father immediately put a plan in motion to restore mankind to intimate fellowship with Himself. He set out to establish a family of faith through whom He could bless the nations of the world. These chosen children of God would reveal the heavenly Father to fallen humanity.

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shawn.akers@charismamed.com (James Robison) Men Fri, 08 Feb 2013 14:00:00 -0500
How to Wake Up Your Sleeping Giant http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men/19798-how-to-wake-up-your-sleeping-giant http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men/19798-how-to-wake-up-your-sleeping-giant

d-MinLife-HowTo ScottTokarA strategy for turning men into a driving force behind your church’s mission

Most pastors dream of having a strong and vibrant men’s community that drives the mission and vision of their local churches. But this dream rarely becomes a reality because most churches have no compelling vision for men that is articulated, visible and connected to a meaningful process in the church context.

So it’s no surprise that men remain affiliated versus activated in the local church. This sad reality is on the church, not on the men. Men like clear targets they can hit—but the church hasn’t painted the target!

On the flip side, it is possible to have strong vision, a defined process that helps men see the vision, and solid outcomes that make men stakeholders in the ongoing success of the church’s mission. Men long for that kind of significance!

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webmaster@strang.com (Kenny Luck) Men Tue, 01 Jan 2013 22:16:23 -0500
Men’s Ministry Receives Wake-up Call http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men/19696-men-s-ministry-receives-wake-up-call http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men/19696-men-s-ministry-receives-wake-up-call

Kenny-Luck-Sleeping Giant-MTEvery Man Ministries and Kenny Luck have created a pair of Sleeping Giant programs to activate vibrant men’s ministry. Centered around supporting the vision of the local church, the Sleeping Giant Total Solution uses state-of-the-art technology via the definitive EveryManMinistries.com website to offer continuous strategy, video sessions, networking and engagement for churches of all sizes and denominations.

Every Man Ministries, founded by best-selling author and Men’s expert Kenny Luck, developed the Sleeping Giant model after over a decade of research and work with ministries across the globe.  Now, this proven method of moving men from the Crowd to the Core is available to all churches, ministries and small groups with the launch of two separate web-based programs: Sleeping Giant Core and Sleeping Giant Flex.

Sleeping Giant Core is a one-year program filled with strategy, content and coaching designed to help pastors move men from simply being a part of the crowd into the core leadership that revolutionizes the health of their church and community for years to come. Developed and tested inside churches of all denominations and sizes, the Sleeping Giant Core offers churches a plan to launch, cultivate, sustain and renew their men’s community to engage with the vision of the pastor, without increasing the salary budget.

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shawn.akers@charismamed.com (Lori Heiselman/Front Gate Media) Men Thu, 06 Dec 2012 21:00:00 -0500
Kenny Luck Ignites Sleeping Giant Movement to Wake Up Christian Men http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men/19654-kenny-luck-ignites-sleeping-giant-movement-to-wake-up-christian-men http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men/19654-kenny-luck-ignites-sleeping-giant-movement-to-wake-up-christian-men

Kenny-Luck-Sleeping Giant-MT

For years, Kenny Luck has witnessed Men’s Ministry in local churches leaving men unengaged and unfulfilled. The best-selling author’s heart is to see that trend cease.

Luck, an ECPA platinum award-winning author of the God’s Man and Every Man Series and pastor of Men at Rick Warren’s Saddleback Church, has launched the definitive website for Christian men in conjunction with the Sleeping Giant Total Solution, a proven Men’s Ministry model.

EverymanMinistries.com has ignited a grassroots movement from within that equips the local church to use modern technology to create a spiritual phenomenon: Strong men of God who will look to impact their families and the culture around them.

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shawn.akers@charismamed.com (Shawn A. Akers) Men Fri, 16 Nov 2012 14:00:00 -0500
A Missing Demographic http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men/19526-a-missing-demographic http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men/19526-a-missing-demographic d-MinLife-Men
How can your church intentionally reach and lead men?

God has a high opinion of men. That may sound presumptuous, but Scripture backs me up. He created man, so He obviously had in mind a purpose for men. And it's difficult to overlook the fact that Jesus founded the New Testament church on the hearts and minds of a handful of male apostles.
Yet according to polls conducted by Hartford's Institute of Religious Research and the Gallup Pollsters, the average church in America is comprised of only 7 to 11 percent men. What has robbed the church of its male leadership and effectual ministry?
When we attempt to answer this question, we find dozens of dynamics that researchers use to extrapolate explanations as to the various reasons why men don't see the need to be a part of a local church. One of the reasons they cite is that men feel pastors do not address "relevant" issues.]]>
webmaster@strang.com (Aubrey Shines) Men Sun, 01 Jul 2012 13:56:41 -0400
Winning the Hearts of Men http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men/18182-winning-the-hearts-of-men http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men/18182-winning-the-hearts-of-men

Creating a church culture that reaches African-American men

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michael.stevens@strang.com (Michael A. Stevens) Men Thu, 18 Dec 2008 15:36:01 -0500
Come One, Come Anyone? http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men/18288-come-one-come-anyone http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men/18288-come-one-come-anyone

Why it’s hard to mobilize men—and how you can change that

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brian.doyle@strang.com (Brian Doyle) Men Thu, 12 Feb 2009 22:28:26 -0500
Mild At Heart http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men/11036-mild-at-heart http://ministrytodaymag.com/index.php/ministry-life/men/11036-mild-at-heart Why gutless churches are guyless ... and what you do to make your church a place men can't resist.
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fake+David_Murrow@charismamedia.com (David Murrow) Men Sun, 01 May 2005 05:00:00 -0400