Avoid the Pitfalls of your Masculinity

From Pastor Michelle’s Sermon on Father’s Day “Men Behaving Godly”:

Here are the six pitfalls of our masculinity to avoid:

1. Arogant husbands and fathers. Men are 90% ego wrapped
in skin. Unique blend of pride B/C we are warriors. But we have to get Godly pride.
2. Autocratic husband (tyrant) misinterprets the verse that says men is the head of the house but forgets the part that says we are to love our wives.
3. Absentee husband. Men walk around making babies but don’t want to take care of them or their mothers. Forget baby mommy and baby daddy mentality and realize the baby has a mother and a father. Rebellion and misbehavior can be cries for attention.
4. Abusive husbands and fathers. Men taking out anger and fustrations on wives. You don’t have to inflict abuse physically but you can do it emotionally too. Phys can be more painful but emotional can be more destructive.
5. Aloofness (loners) means to be emotionally distant, cold or distant. When we get mad we clam up. Does not line up with psalms 112 women and children interpret silence as rejection.
6. Angry husbands and fathers. Most of us don’t even know what we are angry about.

Men Behaving Godly

The key scripture behind Pastor Michelle’s Father’s day sermon:

Psalm 112
1 Praise the LORD! Blessed is the man who fears the LORD, who greatly delights in his commandments!
2 His offspring will be mighty in the land; the generation of the upright will be blessed.
3 Wealth and riches are in his house, and his righteousness endures forever.
4 Light dawns in the darkness for the upright; he is gracious, merciful, and righteous.
5 It is well with the man who deals generously and lends; who conducts his affairs with justice.
6 For the righteous will never be moved; he will be remembered forever.
7 He is not afraid of bad news; his heart is firm, trusting in the LORD.
8 His heart is steady; he will not be afraid, until he looks in triumph on his adversaries.
9 He has distributed freely; he has given to the poor; his righteousness endures forever; his horn is exalted in honor.
10 The wicked man sees it and is angry; he gnashes his teeth and melts away; the desire of the wicked will perish!

Her exhortation to the men present and those not present was to be a Psalms 112 man, be a man behaving Godly, not a man as the world would be portray us as men behaving badly.

Five Characteristics of Weak Leaders

From Team of Rivals by Doris Kearns Goodwin, Michael Hyatt pulls out five characteristics of weak leaders.

General George B. McClellan, commander of the “Army of the Potomac” and, eventually, first general-in-chief of the Union Army…

  1. Hesitating to take definitive action. McClellan was constantly preparing. According to him, the Army was never quite ready. The troops just needed a little more training. In his procrastination, he refused to engage the enemy, even when he clearly had the advantage. He could just not bring himself to launch an attack. When Lincoln finally relieved him of his duties, he famously said, “If General McClellan does not want to use the army, I would like to borrow it for a time.”
  2. Complaining about a lack of resources. He constantly complained about the lack of available resources. He didn’t have enough men. His men weren’t paid enough. They didn’t have enough heavy artillery. And on and on he went. The truth is that, as a leader, you never have enough resources. You could always use more of one thing or another. But the successful leaders figure out how to get the job done with the resources they have.
  3. Refusing to take responsibility. McClellan was constantly blaming everyone else for his mistakes and for his refusal to act. He even blamed the President. Every time he suffered a defeat or a setback, someone or something was to blame. He was a master finger-pointer. Great leaders don’t do this. They are accountable for the results and accept full responsibility for the outcomes.
  4. Abusing the privileges of leadership. While his troops were struggling in almost unbearable conditions, McClellan lived in near-royal splendor. He spent almost every evening entertaining guests with elaborate dinners and parties. He insisted on the best clothes and accommodations. His lifestyle stood in distinct contrast to General Ulysses S. Grant, his eventual successor, who often traveled with only a toothbrush.
  5. Engaging in acts of insubordination. McClellan openly and continually criticized the President, his boss. He was passive-aggressive. Even when Lincoln gave him a direct order, he found a way to avoid obeying it. In his arrogance, he always knew better than the President and had a ready excuse to rationalize his lack of follow-through.

From Michael Hyatt’s Blog

With Every Fiber

Reflecting on his Navy SEAL training with his CO:

The training is brutal and unjust.

It has to be that way.

It is the only way we can find out if a man just likes the ideal of being a SEAL [Husband, Father, or a true Son of God] or if it is in his heart and every fiber of his being to be a SEAL [Husband, Father, or a true Son of God].

One other ideal struck me:

If a man ever entertains the ideal of quiting… He is done for. What we do externally to the candidate exposes what he thinks internally. Waiver for a moment and the pain will make the call for you.

The places in bold are the areas that God is working on me.

Posted on Mike Paschall’s Blog Site

The Mentoring Project

http://vimeo.com/moogaloop.swf?clip_id=5383654&server=vimeo.com&show_title=1&show_byline=1&show_portrait=0&color=&fullscreen=1

The Mentoring Project – Elephant Musth Cycle from The Mentoring Project on Vimeo.

@tmproject seeks to respond to the American crisis of fatherlessness by inspiring and equipping faith communities to mentor fatherless boys.

Find out more at The Mentoring Project and @tmproject

Job

We all know the story of Job, but I found this interesting. The beginning of the book of Job describes Job like this:

He was blameless—a man of complete integrity. He feared God and stayed away from evil.
Job 1:1

Later on in verse eight God describes Job himself as “the finest man in all the earth. He is blameless—a man of complete integrity. He fears God and stays away from evil.” Now we know the rest of the story God allows Satan to test Job and in doing so Satan kills his farmhands, kills all his sheep, steals all his camels, and  kills his sons and daughters. Distraught, he does what we all should do at a time like this he praises God. He remains true to his God. Then he gets his second test, Satan takes his health, making him really miserable. Even his wife encourages him to curse God, but Job remains true. After this we get into long debates with Jobs friends, probably more of Satan’s tests to try and get him to speak against God. What I want to focus on is the end of Job:

1 Then Job replied to the Lord:
2 “I know that you can do anything,
and no one can stop you.
3 You asked, ‘Who is this that questions my wisdom with such ignorance?’
It is I—and I was talking about things I knew nothing about,
things far too wonderful for me.
4 You said, ‘Listen and I will speak!
I have some questions for you,
and you must answer them.’
5 I had only heard about you before,
but now I have seen you with my own eyes
.
6 I take back everything I said,
and I sit in dust and ashes to show my repentance.”
Job 42:1-6

Look at what he says, “I had only heard about you before, but now I have seen you with my own eyes”. How crazy is it that a man that even God described as what we would call a “Godly man” or a “Good Christian”, a man that didn’t fail even in the face of many painful trials, but still a man that only had a referential experience of God? Maybe this is the reason that God allowed Job to go through what he did, to take him from knowing about God to knowing God.

James says it the best.

Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. 3 For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. 4 So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.
James 1:2-4

Our trials and troubles, there just might be more to them than life sucking, God might be using them to grow us and our relationship with him. That fills me with a lot of hope.

(PS: This reminds me of Fathered By God)

The changing of a man

“That the tide of sin, which before did run so strong — should be so easily turned; that the sinner who, a little before was sailing hellward, and lacked neither wind nor tide to carry him there—should now suddenly alter his course, and tack about for heaven—what a miracle is this!

To see . . .

an earthly man become heavenly,
a carnal man become spiritual,
a loose man become precise,
a proud man become humble,
a covetous man become liberal, and
a harsh man become meek, etc.,
is to behold the greatest of miracles!”

– Thomas Brooks, The Crown and Glory of Christianity

Via: First Importance

Therefore, rid yourselves of all malice and all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and slander of every kind. – 1 Peter 2:1

The Manly Campout

This past weekend, the men of Living Waters had a great time camping outside like the mighty (modern) woodsmen that God created us to be (thanks to Pastor Joe for your constant support and for the awesome tents).

We had the best Bar-B-Q ribs (thanks to our chef Angel) for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Ok I might have exaderated a bit, but they were darn good ribs.

Our fire was roaring (thanks to Ron) and there might have even been a bit of jumping over the fire to prove once and for all just how manly we were.

Our conversations had depth (thanks to Pastor Jay) and plenty of laughs (thanks to a single night of camping six years ago).

We had the pleasure of introducing one of our brothers to the wonders of camping plenty (thanks to David’s new wife for allowing him to come).

Our day was filled with time on the water, floating down a lazy river, for some much need rest and relaxation  (thanks to Jeff for always being ready to get wet).

Even in the midst of the fun and the food, we were challenged (thanks to Scotty) to seek God through quiet time or long walks through the tick infested woods. And he spoke to us….

He called us out, telling us that we are calling ourselves kings without actually acting like them.

He raised the bar, telling us to throw off the dunce caps the world had given us, and put on the crowns that he was giving us.

Then he crowned us with new crowns, not crowns of our own making or some old crown we just picked up off the ground, but a new crown that God created.

From here on out, the world will be different because there will be ten Godly men ruling and reigning the way God intended them to.

Thank you, Lord, for the great out doors that you created for us to explore, and for the beauty and power therein that draws us closer to you.  Thank you, Lord, for keeping us safe (even from ourselves). Thank you, Lord, for speaking to us.

Thank you, Lord, for loving and understanding wives and families.

Thank your, Lord, for good friends and strong brothers.

More Pics here…