Brother Maynard is pondering those who are pondering the reasons why men don’t want to go to church and how to get them into the pews.
Personally I don't think it is a problem with the feminism of the church as much as it is the Feminism of God himself - and not in a good way.
In the past weeks as I have focused on Father and how warped my image is of Him, I have learned something. If my image of Him was correct, why would I ever have wanted to be close to Him? If it weren’t for that whole “burning in hell if I rejected Him“ thing, why would I have ever wanted to have a relationship with Him. I’m wondering today after reading about men not wanting to be in church if this is really the issue.
See, my head knew God was loving, kind, patient and all of that but my heart would have described Him as somewhat of a very pissy, PMS’y and even bitchy female deity. (You can trust me on this - I’ve had 4 daughters….sometimes we should have a sign on the door to warn people) I would have NEVER said this out loud before but here’s how I was viewing God:
My old God was perpetually frustrated with me. My head believed he loved me (after all he did save me from Hell) but my heart believed that he was just waiting for me to get my act together. My head believed I could trust in Him but my heart believed that anytime something bad would happen to me it was Him trying to get my attention to straighten out and do what He wanted me to do. I had to pay him off to get his blessings, worship Him so that he wouldn’t get jealous of all the other stuff that I loved, give him all the glory so that I could not be seen as keeping any of it for myself, and perform “acts of service” (giving, praying, reading my Bible, ect) so that he would be pleased with me. I never knew when His “patience” would run out and he would “Blow.” If I screwed up I was never sure what kind of mood I would find Him in and so I just stayed away for a few days. Mostly I had a schizophrenic God that my head told me was trustworthy and kind but my heart did not believe a word of it. He was like a woman on her “time of the month.”
Now all you out there who have Husbands. Tell me this. If you husband has a close friend, describe him to me. I bet there is not a manipulative bone in your husbands’ friend's body. I bet your husband feels like he can be himself. I bet that this friend is not volatile in temperament. I bet that you husband can always count on his friend to just be “normal.” I bet your husband does not have to “do things” to please his friend. I bet that that person rarely ever makes your husband feel guilty about things he “should be doing.”
See, guys are into relationship despite what we may believe about this. They just are not into relationships that require them to sacrifice their souls for. (I’m not talking about relationships that they might find sex, money or power in it for them - I‘m talking about just pure friendship kind of relationships) They mostly all hate manipulative relationships and they love the security of knowing what that relationship is going to require and the ability to be themselves. This is not a character flaw in a person - it is normal and healthy.
So my advice to those who want men in their pews…..preach the truth about God. Maybe I’m wrong but I think that if men (and truly women too) in our world were shown a God of love and a God of joy they would WANT to hang out with not only Him but with those who love Him too. Remember, Jesus did not have a hard time keeping a bunch of “dumb ol’ boys” hanging around Him.
Who would want to hang around a bitchy, PMS’y God?