“Nothing do Satan or hell fear more than praying men.” ~Leonard Ravenhill
Would it be sexist to say that revival begins with men? Don’t get me wrong, I would never think of undercutting the importance and impact of women in ministry. As a matter of fact, it’s typically the case that women outnumber men in terms of overall ministry involvement within the church. According to author David Murrow, 23 percent of married women attend church without their husbands. Sociologist Christian Smith claims that among mainline Protestant Churches, 66 percent of attendees are females. If each reader was to introspectively take an inventory of their respective church, perhaps we can relate this to our own community: How many of each gender take part in the church’s prayer meetings? How many of each gender attend the church’s Bible study classes? How many males are involved in the children or youth ministry? We needn’t go further.
If more men were to lead the charge in passionately pursuing the word of God, building up the family, and serving the local community, would your church look different? If so, then why aren’t we seeing more men step up? Certainly, one could blame the job or other commitments that take up the man’s schedule, however it remains a fact that a man will do what he really wants to do (in spite of his schedule). If a man’s favorite TV show airs at a specific time and day, he will clear his schedule for it. If his baseball league meets on certain days or has double headers and then plays late, he will clear his schedule for it. If someone was to hand him VIP tickets to the next football game for his favorite sports team, he will clear his schedule for it. Indeed, this isn’t a question of calendar availability. If instead we were to look at this through the spiritual lens, it might help us understand this topic a bit more.
It all goes back to Adam and Eve. The two of them knew that they should not have eaten from the forbidden tree, because God told them so. In other words, knowledge itself doesn’t imply obedience. They had knowledge that the tree’s fruit was not permitted to be eaten, yet they still went ahead and ate from the tree. Men may know what is needed to be done in the church. They know that they should join a small group, pray with their wife, and attend the Bible study…yet they don’t. We men may follow in the footsteps of Adam, but does that mean that we are destined to stay in this vegetative spiritual state? We’ll continue our discussion next week and pick it up from here.
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