As a Christian I’ve been in and out of church over the last couple of years. I’ve struggled with being a lukewarm christian with my previous lifestyle of drunkenness, debauchery, and sexual sin. Being sober has not been easy but maintaining it has been really hard. However, plugging back into my faith has made me strongly believe in God again.
I believe God has been calling me to fellowship with other believers again to prove to me that all of His people aren’t bad, but most are just misguided. I’ll admit, many churches come on too strong, ask for too much, and oftentimes, are dictators. Which is why many people have experienced church hurt.
From my own observations and personal experiences many churches have a problem understanding that 27 year old men like myself are men of God, not little boys because they can’t let go of who you were as a child. I get so tired of always being seen as “Mama’s little baby” or hearing constant comments such as, “I remember when you were just a baby”. I’m pretty sure that no man wants to hear that and I can fully understand why men have checked out of the church because of it. However, over the years many churches are seeing an increase of women and a decrease in men. And this baby-like mentality isn’t helping at all because it’s made men feel emasculated for being themselves. Which in return leads to many men who become unwilling to submit to God, but relying on their own understanding.
Which brings me to a video I watched called, “Why men hate going to church”. Speaker David Murrow said that, “Men don’t need church to be a good person.” See how the ego plays again with us men. He continued saying, “It’s hard for a man to win at church.” At first when I heard David say this I thought he was nuts because when I think of competition, I surely don’t think about the church at all. However, I heard him out when he continued to say that with us men we are competitive which is so true. The examples he used when he discussed reading out loud, socializing with strangers, hugging strangers, worshiping, and flipping through the pages of the bible to find a certain bible verse. Do you know who does better? Women, not men.
Since we’ve already felt emasculated in many cases now we just feel as dumb as Homer Simpson, which doesn’t suit well. Here’s the picture I’m painting that the average man struggles with when trying to submit to God:
- Churches have praise and worship time but it’s seems, “too feminine” because of the loud female voices, exaggerated clapping, and lack of rhythm many men have with makes them think “church is only for women”
- Men can’t keep up with the social interactions such as hugging and talking to strangers which makes them feel inadequate
- Men are still viewed as a little kid instead of a full-grown man. Which will not make any man feel comfortable or even respected. I can’t stress this enough. Men do not want to be seen as children. If your church is guilty of this then stop acting surprised that men aren’t attending. It ain’t rocket-science.
Earlier I mentioned that more women in the church and men leaving because they do not feel needed or can’t win. Today our boys are becoming more and more emasculated and scared of their own shadow. It’s even worse now because a man doesn’t want to be a man, now he wants to be a woman. Since our young men don’t have any Men as role models they become of the world and gravitate to wicked spiritual practices that will lose their souls and have them possessed by Lucifer himself.
So I know what you’re thinking? Well Caleb, how can we get our men of God to even submit to God. Well I have a couple of practical suggestions of what us as men and the church can do:
- Have an understanding of Christ. He needs to understand that Christianity is it’s broadest terms means you must believe that God gave his son Jesus Christ to die on the cross for everyone’s sins because we were so wicked as people. With this knowledge we must do our best every single day to represent Christ in a positive light. When we screw up we must repent and ask for His forgiveness. The church has no right to judge you or throw any stones at you simply because you sinned. Your sins only need to be addressed with the Father because He is the one who forgives you.
- The church needs to respect him as a man. Not all churches are guilty of this by the way but I’ve heard way too many stories of this happening to ignore it. When a young man (18-37) walks into your church, treat him with respect. In the film, “Fly by Night” I described respect perfectly when he said, “Respect is the only thing worth anything because it’s the only thing we don’t have to ask them permission for.” As a young man if I have to ask my church to respect me, I’m leaving. If I respect myself and your church I want the same thing back or it’s simply not going to work out. Respect goes a long way and without it don’t expect men to be showing up and doing anything in the church because it’s not happening. When the church learns this you will have more men in the church which will equate in more marriages and children. Which is a win for everybody.
- We as men need to let go of the past. This ties into point number #2 about being valued as men because since this has happened in our past, we tell ourselves crazy things such as God doesn’t love me anymore, I don’t need to read the Bible everyday I’m still a believer, and I don’t even need God because I did everything by myself. Church hurt is real and I’m not saying get over the pastor who made you feel small, the pastor who couldn’t keep his dick in his pants when he was messing around with younger women, the sexual harassment you personally endured from a woman or man, the contractions that your pastor or other ministers taught you because of their “god-like mentality”, or even worse, the church allowing any of the above to happen and not even expurgate the pastor of his personal sins or simply pretend the church is perfect without any issues. Meanwhile, that particular church simply isn’t evolving and losing favor with God. This is extremely unfortunate and I apologize if you fell victim to any of this, but you must forgive. I know this will not happen overnight but just hear me out. Forgiveness is the key to anything in life. If you cannot forgive your heart will remain cold. I myself held onto a lot of bitterness. In my IG Live video I talked about my experiences with the church and they weren’t pretty, they were ugly. However, I forgave those people because they just lacked knowledge and understanding of others. I learned that there wasn’t anything I can do about that but just move on and find another church. Which is what I did and it’s been pretty good thus far.
My faith was cold but now it’s on fire. I pray without being asked and forgive others without even thinking about it because I know that our world is suffering. But since I’ve submitted to The Most High I will not suffer forever because I will enter His kingdom when it’s time. Men, if you are having a hard time submitting to God you must do some soul searching, read the word, and let go of the past because it’s the only way to true salvation.