Today I will meet with a pastor from a local mega church and try to convince him that everything he knows about church and how its being done is wrong. Yea, that’s what I said, I intend to try and convince him that the church aids and abets the destruction of the family in the U.S. If there is time, how it fails outright with men despite there being present any number (way less than 50% of the crowd) of men enthusiastically participating, and I may even segue into the “Oprah-tisation” of the church in general and how that serves no one.
Its quite a challenge for an afternoon coffee.
I started asking myself, each time I have this conversation with Christian men, what are the common objections to my points? Its easy to summarize; the most common ones come straight from scripture. “Women are the weaker vessel”…”We must love sacrificially, as Christ the church”…”men are to go first, lead”, etc. These are of the true but irrelevant nature. Most of that exegesis applies to a husband and wife anyway, but let me be clear, I dislike parsing scripture for loopholes and exceptions, especially when it is a matter of sacrifice for another, and a greater love hath no man type of issue. So, I take these scriptural admonitions as they come and handle them adroitly. I expect these, and I am prepared for them.
But what others?
The problem doesn’t exist. You can’t blame everything on women. Ok, we are men, we have to do something about it. Like that.
What do these reflect in men? They reflect a lack of empathy, man to man. Men hold one another accountable if we hold one another at all. Women hold one another IN PLACE, so the empathy and sentimentality flow is not interrupted. The water of empathy flowing between the women is strange, it feels great while they are in it, but affords no lasting rest or peace. It solves nothing, its not even a temporary fix like drugs and alcohol are said to be, because its not about forgetting the problem, its about wallowing in it. But back to men.
Since men are not prone to empathy much generally, and definitely not for and with other men, men are naturally blinded by the issues I will raise with the pastor. Only by turning these issues into ones of accountability or personal pain will men usually see these things, rarely is there true empathy for a man who is on the outs with his family. Cold comfort words, and much buck up and get over it language are the norm. So, my intention is to make this about accountability but change the focus to holding men to account for allowing this all to happen. Its dishonorable, disrespectful, and effacing of men to linger as we are today. The compliments and faux encouragement of women are not worthy rewards for a belief and action set that is ruining society for males and females alike.
Facts, cold dry numbers and facts without apology may or may not do it. But thats what I will try to do. The best situation would be if, as a pastor, he does share empathy with men still against the curb to which they were kicked. Between that empathy, and the masculine sense of accountability, let it be motivational.