I “Stepped Up” and got shot down

[I started this post after leaving the first comment. By the time Id finished the second they had shut me down]

I made a comment at the Men Stepping Up blog. It was following a blog entry called 21 things a man needs to know about marriage, part 3. Parts 1 and 2 are just before it, easy to find.

Someone responded to me. If I am fortunate enough to have a back and forth with them, it will be there for other readers of the blog. Its an opportunity to get some guys thinking if they read along there.

Or the whole thing could die after one response from me.

[Which it ultimately did, as you will see below]

My original comment:

Your series is destructive evangelical feminism. Blaming men for their wives affair is a sign that you have truly fallen off the cliff of pedestalizing women, and the churchian meme of man bad woman good.
Shaming me, even in your thoughts, is predictable and wrongheaded. I am not an overbearing bossy man who forces obedience from his wife, I am not a bitter divorced man, rather a long married father of 4 all with one wife. I am simply one whose eyes are open to the big picture, and painfully frustrated by things like this list.
I must ask, do you believe this is a new approach? Things like this have been the frame for relational teaching for the better part of the last 50 years. By continuously telling men to step up, and then only gushing encouragement on women because of their past hurts, the pressure they feel from images of women they see, whatever, telling women no matter what they CAN BE the princess God made them to be, telling men they need to get out of the porn and serve more, serve harder…..there are only 2 possible underlying belief sets you can have.
1. men are stupid, we have been told this for decades yet the growing familial destruction in our society (according to you caused by men, fix men, fix the marriage problem) shows men are not yet getting whats being said, even though its not rocket science

or

2. men really ARE bad while women really ARE good……spiritually superior to men, given a head start in that race Paul describes, men are told we are able to reach what we should reach, that we have the potential if we’d just “step up”, but we’ve been told to step up now for decades.

We are either innately “worse” than women, or we are flat stupid. You have no choice but those, you must own one of those positions. You cannot rush from buzzword seminar to buzzword seminar all saying the same thing in different ways, over the course of years and years and generations….see the results getting worse and worse in terms of divorce in church, and NOT believe one of those two things.

There are 2 other points.

1. You could be simply pandering to women, because men do like to please women generally, and men enjoy positive feedback from women, and because of the atmosphere youve created women are 65% of the average church, you get nice emails and comments from ladies as you tell men to step up.

Most important

2. You could recognize that the situation has shifted. That because you lay no accountability at women’s feet in the manner in which its done to men, you are creating the problem, not solving it. Women are initiating most divorces, in the church its nearly 80% female initiated. If you believe that the lions share of those are being addressed by telling men to step up, its not men in general that are missing things, its you.

its not courageous to lecture men, though these thing sare always framed with how gutsy you are by tackling men head on. Its courageous to tell women that marriage is for life…that there are VERY limited reasons to divorce, in my opinion one reason, and stop expanding the menu of items for women to choose from.

You have to consider how women read these things. Your offensive affront to men, holding them to account for a woman’s affair, is an enabler of divorce. You’ve devalued sex in marriage (though you’d deny this but the value comparison screams off the page as you say men are about SEX and women RELATIONSHIP ….bad/good….to the point where if a man neglects the RELATIONSHIP you label it abandonment and she has a divorce get out of jail card. If a woman with holds sex, not only would you rerererererere double your lecture at him to fix himself, you’d hold him accountable for divorcing, and that on top of the fact that the courts are going to skin him alive.

Your ministry is doing far more harm than good.

Scott Williams replies:

Thanks for your impassioned feedback, Empathologism. We would ask you to re-consider your assumptions about this article, blog, and ministry. In your comment, you only envision two possible interpretations of our message in this article. Actually, we have no delusions that men are more evil than women, nor women more noble than men. We aren’t pandering to women in Stepping Up because this is not a blog for women. Stepping Up blog is focused exclusively on men, and even more narrowly, on encouraging them to own their part in their relationships as husband and fathers.

The best way I can think to explain our perspective is the way my wife and I have always taught our seven children to handle perceived wrongs against them. Even when we are 95% in the right, we should look for the 5% God wants us to see that we can impact. The Holy Spirit will reveal that to us as we humble ourselves as men who want to reflect the image of Christ to our wife, our children and our world.

To get a broader exposure to FamilyLife’s heart and passion as a ministry, check out our thousands of articles at http://www.familylife.com/articles/.

I then thanked him and told him Id say more a bit later:

Scott thank you for your response. I have read almost every single article at FL, and at FOTF, and other marriage minded ministries and they are all guilty of what I am suggesting. I will break it down better in awhile.

Again, thanks for posting my comment and for responding

I spent half of today, on and off, writing the response I paste below, then as I was about to post it a new comment to me showed up:

Emphathologism, we have read your blog as well, and it’s obvious we’ll just have to agree to disagree.

I posted the following. even though I doubt it will clear moderation there I posted it anyway, and I was not going to post further or incite an argument. We’ll see if my comment shows up. (I added the beginning paragraph after I saw Scott’s response)

Now after spending time crafting this response you say you read my blog and agree to disagree.
Please do me the courtesy of posting this response I spent lots of time writing.

Thanks for your impassioned feedback. We would ask you to re-consider your assumptions about this article, blog, and ministry. In your comment, you only envision two possible interpretations of our message in this article.
My two interpretations are about what you assume about men, that men are either unable to comprehend this message, or men are spiritually so much worse off than women that we simply cannot over-come these proclivities. I am genuinely curious as to what a third option would be. Let me explain my assertion.
Ministries like this one and another one making the rounds now (33 The Series…which I have attended) have been popular for at least 20 years, since Promise keepers swept the evangelical community in the early and mid-90’s. I attended a few PK rallies back then, and was deeply steeped in this effort to tell men what our issues are, where our proclivities tend, and how we should be verses how we are. I was an enthusiastic one to one evangelist on this stuff, passing literature, telling people, literally wearing the tee shirts. I was also a new Christian at the time and in my early 30’s, married with a couple of children then.
Time went by and I watched the familial destruction in my circle, in my church, and in my neighborhood and pretty much every family that went down was a result of the wife filing the divorce. I’m an engineer by training, and I attribute my scales falling from my eyes partially to that because I could not credibly see what I saw, then reconcile that with the fact that when I was in mixed groups of Christian friends and a divorce was mentioned, the men and women alike would ask “I wonder what HE did”. It’s the norm, conventional wisdom. To ask “I wonder what SHE did” would have invited a combination of anger, shock, or simply glazed looks as if I was being boorish. That the wife files, seems to be something that people are unwilling to pause and think about. They move right past it assuming she must have had some compelling reason. If someone deigns to drill down it’s simple to drop in the term abuse as the reason. That term is wildly over used, even by Family Life where, in one of the articles (and I’ve read all of them that are dealing with marriage and divorce plus I have received Rainy’s email “Moments with You” for several years now) in one article in particular he, Dennis, describes a man who is not listening to his wife and Dennis volunteers that that man is emotionally abusing his wife.
Knowing that women file 80% of divorces in the church and that they cite abuse as the reason, would it not be a worthy cause to dispel the notion that a man not listening to his wife is emotional abuse hence grounds for divorce?
In every case that I knew the couple deeply, there was not infidelity, abuse, addiction, or abandonment. There were no biblical grounds for the filing, nor were there even compelling sympathetic reasons. Yet there exists zero parallel effort to admonish women for the single and sole action that actually necessarily ends a marriage….filing a divorce
Actually, we have no delusions that men are more evil than women, nor women more noble than men. We aren’t pandering to women in Stepping Up because this is not a blog for women. Stepping Up blog is focused exclusively on men, and even more narrowly, on encouraging them to own their part in their relationships as husband and fathers.
The best way I can think to explain our perspective is the way my wife and I have always taught our seven children to handle perceived wrongs against them. Even when we are 95% in the right, we should look for the 5% God wants us to see that we can impact. The Holy Spirit will reveal that to us as we humble ourselves as men who want to reflect the image of Christ to our wife, our children and our world.
You are taking my comments as very simplistic and superficial. The answers you are giving me are boiler plate. Your ministry persists in telling men how men need to be fixed. I am not taking issue whatsoever with that isolated thing. Its fine to admonish men on the basis of biblical guidelines found in Ephesians, in Corinthians, in Peter, in Colossians, and other places, etc. That, alone, is not the problem. Its fine to teach PEOPLE, men and women, that being 95% right is no excuse, etc. etc. But I am not speaking about arguments in a marriage, winning them or losing them or even how to comport in marriage. I am talking about divorce. Period. And why it is happening in the church and how you are badly missing this. I can only guess why you are missing it. Perhaps I should ask.
Do you truly believe that men are directly culpable in the lion’s share of those 80% of divorces that women file? It is a simple question with a simple yes or no answer. If you do….if you believe that by fixing men along the lines these programs are designed to fix men that it would plunge the divorce rate then I refer you back to the original two views I shared. Either men are stupid, or men are morally inferior. It is not logical to say that you do not feel that way, and yet you feel that by fixing men you fix marriage destruction.
Maybe you would say that you do not believe that fixing men will fix marriage destruction. You may say that your ministry works to correct both men and women with biblical admonishments. You would have some credibility on that in that I have read some of the articles written by Barbara that are decently pointed at and to women. But where are the huge movements of women like PK? Where are the Women Stepping Up equivalents?
If you read the offerings of any….choose at random…large evangelical church as far as outreach to men and to women you will find things like Men Stepping Up and its variants for men in every single one. Men being told serve more then serve more, and told more what headship is not than what it is, and so distorting the very word of God that it leaves people to take away whatever they want. You do so with some back drop of concern that men are getting carried away and asking for obedience and being forceful in leadership. Yet, these programs, I repeat, have been saying that same thing for 20 years plus. Hence I direct you back to, are we stupid, or are we inferior?
Look at what’s offered to women as ministry. Self-esteem and encouragement. “Be Gods Princess in a not so princess world”….stuff like that. Can you not see that the average man and woman who sit the pews from childhood on to married adulthood are being given a badly skewed view of the nature of men vs women? Is it not possible that you are feeding the very rationale that women are using to frivolously divorce their husbands?
The present situation is like a teeter totter. One end, the man’s end, is mashed down into the dirt with corrective teaching. The other end, the woman’s end it held aloft with encouragement teaching. And, women are divorcing men in droves. Please see the connection and what it would take to fix it. Until ministry talks at and to women about this, its folly to keep admonishing men and seeing them, on father’s Day, weeping in the pews (again) while a self-satisfied wife rubs circles on their backs.

I ask you to consider that I am not reacting to something that I have not spent countless hours in prayer about and reading and studying and informing myself because what is said doesn’t match what is done. Then, I invite you to read something (not my writing), since I have read most if not all the relevant resources you offer.
One: http://www.drurywriting.com/keith/Do.Women.sin.htm this will show you the cumulative effect of what the present church teaching of men and women is doing

If anyone from Stepping up reads this, know that I was not going to go ballistic or be offended by anything in the exchange. If you are a reader here, draw your own conclusions but please refrain from extreme characterizations that attack any individual.  I still think somewhere, buried in one of these ministries, there is -or will be- a man who has been scathed by a frivolous divorce, hence choked down a red pill and can try to work on changing hearts and minds from the inside. I struggle to give the benefit of the doubt as to intent of the principles when what was the beginning of a dispassionate dialog was so quickly dismissed….on their blog where they should be willing to engage. As I feel, yes, even “called” to hammer away with this message, they have ostensibly chosen to hammer away at theirs for similar reasons. When  read their anecdotes about this and that man who was intractable then he finally acquiesced and saved his marriage, I wonder why that result is not worth defending, or even why they wouldn’t seek a convert in me and those who read manosphere blogs.

Are we unworthy?

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49 thoughts on “I “Stepped Up” and got shot down

  1. They have too much invested to ever switch the narrative around. Men are bad, women good. Anything else rocks the boat, and we can’t have that now, can we?

  2. Donal makes a point we’ve brought up before. It’s profitable, but I also think that the conventional approach is so believed in that it seems insane to challenge it. It is easy to forget we use the Matrix analogy for a reason. As the one guy says in the first movie, ignorance us bliss. When you consider that scene, the alternative to the ignorance he’s talking about is eating terrible food, living like rats and facing overwhelming odds with only a legend as a vague hope for victory.

    Marriage is an institution, generally. If it is not supported socially it is empty. Therefore for the Christian it must be a private one supported if at all by a community of fellow believers and be participated by people of impeccable character. Until churches insist it must be so by both parties the seminars and books are like the kings horses and men with Humpty Dumpty.

  3. I agree with all of that. Im still a bit shocked when I imagine how it must go there at FL. They likely have read this blog because Rainy’s name is used so often. But more, they have likely read Dalrock’s blog sooner and more as he gets some inst- launches and reaches a ton of folks even under “un-launched” posts. Then, the FL dismisses such a large and growing group as a sort of fringe element based on what you, sojourn, say, that it defies conventional wisdom so badly that I doubt they really even absorb the words written on the page.

    If you look at his reply to me, he didn’t even really reply. to anything I said. He replied to some boiler plate bitter man saying “don’t pick on men”. They got zero context, did not process the questions that, if they had, would impeach them immediately. Men who go in for that stuff have lost their ability to think logically about facts because they over ride them with what they want to see as the world. Then, they are left with a mission, that being to keep effacing themselves.

    And that, friends, is 100% pure lift seeking. Its is as basic as that. Profit is secondary to lift seeking. If suddenly the profit was in a new set of corrective seminars for women,

  4. These groups teaching men would not be swayed by women suddenly having women who agreed with these points and tried to teach women correctly. UNLESS the teaching at once built men up, aggressively. Then youd be in their space and men hearing women saying that o women twould be more compelling to men….if that makes any sense

  5. What these guys don’t realize is that they’re caught in a double-bind. As long as they refuse to see MISANDRY as part of the problem, they’re going to keep pandering to women at a descending rate. It’s like a spiral: they ‘step up’ the women knock them two steps lower. They ‘step up’ again; and get knocked down two more steps, and so on until there’s no place left to fall.

    They need to get through their thick skulls that feminized women will never be satisfied with men ‘stepping up’—unless they mean stepping up to the guillotine.

    No, what men need to focus on in the current paradigm is ‘Stepping OUT’. Go MGTOW, turn to foreign women—but don’t concede one inch to the femihags! What FamilyLife is advocating is just a Christian variation of the MHRM strategy: co-opt the opposition. That strategy has never worked: it’s just the Hegelian Dialectic rehashed: keep aiming at the lowest common denominator until ‘consensus’ is reached—and usually they find at the end that opposition holds all the cards anyway!

  6. Peaceful wife:
    “I would love to see a large movement for women…&c”

    That’s one of the most insightful comments I’ve ever read from a ‘Red Pill’ woman. Yes—it’s the WOMEN who need to do the ‘stepping up’—the men no longer have an obligation to do anything for them, until they’re willing to correct their own problems.

    It’s really a shame so few women who comment in the Manosphere understand that. But the kind of movement you described among women is exactly what’s needed.

  7. Very good post, empath…

    What these guys don’t realize is that they’re caught in a double-bind. As long as they refuse to see MISANDRY as part of the problem, they’re going to keep pandering to women at a descending rate.

    And profits. And shame on their work. For example, Albert Mohler admitting that women use pornography just as much as men. Or any of these other teachings. Deception is very blinding, but to not see what these groups like Family Life and Focus On The Family as feminism and these groups themselves as feminist organizations akin to the National Organization for Women is to severely deny the truth.

    The most base fundamental tenet of feminism is the moral superiority of women and what better way to foster that than to encourage women continually in their sins and tearing down men at every step, keeping in mind that marriage (and the unscriptural redefinition thereof by these people) is both the battleground and eventual prison of men.

    The presumption of the moral superiority of women within Christianity is a very old one. However the redefinition of sin as something men only do is a newer one steeped in modern feminism, and fully supported by the man-haters of Family Life, FOTF, and others. Quoted:

    She [Valerie Saiving Goldstein] also sought to redefine the principal sins of men and women. She asserted that to men, the principal sin is pride and grace is sacrificial love. In women, she asserted the exact opposite, that a woman’s principal sin is too much sacrificial love and not enough pride in themselves (or lack of self-esteem). (10)

    In other words, Family Life is following the modern feminist script:
    The sin of man is that he is prideful, therefore all men must be abased continually.
    The sin of woman is that she sacrificially loves too much (debased); therefore all women must be lifted up continually.

    It is my prayer that men will dismiss anyone who wishes a man to “man up”, “step up”, or “grow up” for the disgusting filth that it is. Remember that man is the image and glory of God (1 Cor 11:7), so hatred of men like this is hatred of God as well. I pray that these people will repent of their sins, but I will not hold my breath in calling this garbage out for what it is.

  8. You’re not the only one, Empath…

    http://mensteppingupblog.com/2014/01/05/irresistible-man-2/#comment-3722

    pendantic January 7, 2014
    “Family” Lifer’s
    You make women out to be emotional cripples who have no ability to take responsibility for their lives. Women do have moral agency; read your bible. All of your posts are of the theme that men are inherently bad and women are inherently good. Read your bible. The result of your pathological perspective is men fearing to marry, pastors following your ruinous lead, and women FEELING entitled to break up their families based on your non-christian tripe. You have much repenting to do! May our Lord rebuke you!

    1000% truth bolded there by me.

  9. Certainly, women are not emotional cripples, but men need to be reminded that most women are more emotionally fragile than they are as men.

    That was part of his response to Ballista. I suddenly feel compelled to compile all my myriad posts teaching women how to manage their emotions and doing…something with them.

    Women do NOT have to be weak-willed, simpering, emotionally driven nut cases! It is not Christlike and we are not exempt from the call to be self-controlled and more like Christ.

  10. That was part of his response to Ballista.

    Huh? I was just quoting another person on mensteppingupblog that was calling Rainey et.al. out.

  11. Interesting too, though, looking at the response to pedantic at how similar it was to the response to empath.

  12. I thought so too, but its not important, it was a good comment and a it was interesting that the response was canned, somewhat. These organizations would hold a meeting and decide on narratives to use to respond to things like this if they thought it would come up often enough.

    I wonder how it would go if the strong independent gals knew that they were saying men need to be reminded that women are emotionally weaker. You have your set of women who like wallowing in that, you also have those that would blanch at it. Let them write that at Christian Forums. It would be a strange thing to watch as the women there are big fans of mens corrective ministries, yet they could not tolerate such a comment.

    Simpering is a wonderful word Elspeth.

  13. I wonder too if there is some kind of terminology barrier that keeps those on Man Stepping Up from getting what is being said. I’ve been reading blogs like yours for years, so concepts like “the churchian meme of man bad woman good” and “frame” are very familiar. To someone not steeped in this material, do they know what those things are? It takes some time to begin to understand this material and how and why it fits into our lives and to have some idea of what to do about it. Probably it is too much to expect that someone on that forum (especially the moderators of that forum) would read this and have a light bulb moment.

    Also, they might think you are right about a lot of things, but they are caught in the trap of thinking that if they agree to any part of it, even a small part of it, then they are agreeing categorically to the whole thing and that is too much for them. So, of course you’re going to get banned from their forums due to this all or nothing kind of response on their part.

  14. Its a very good point. I didnt even realize Id used those terms, and that is sad.
    He remarked he had “read my blog” I I know that in the past there was plenty of evidence that FoTF folks were reading Dalrocks blog, I would assume his blog has made it way into all their offices.
    Nevertheless, true, the terms can be tedious. Im glad you wrote that, I need to guard against being proprietary like that

  15. Yes, that’s pretty much the idea I was trying to bring out. I’ve been reading some of the Man Stepping Up website and I can say that there is much that is good about it, though it is solidly set in a blue pill context. Such as advice to men to be responsible, take charge, pray, etc. What could be wrong with that? What is wrong about that website is more subtle, which makes it much worse. The best rat poison is good food with some lethal poison mixed in. Their website reads like this: “Men need to take charge, be responsible, love their wives, love their kids – and it’s your fault when your wife has an affair. She wouldn’t have done that if you had been a good man, and even if you are a good man, there was still something you were missing or left undone.” This is what I object to and what you rightly pointed out.

    OK, so how to call them out on that? The opening shot of “your series is destructive evangelical feminism” is going to sound to them like “every word on your website is destructive evangelical feminism,” so it’s time to circle the wagons and defend against the intruder.

    But I’ll stop there. These were just things I was thinking as I read your post. I still think that for them to admit to even a part of what you are talking about would be for them to tear their whole structure down and I don’t think it’s going to happen. But it would be great if they would consider it somehow.

  16. Also, there are only 8 comments on their post about marriage. Not 400. I see about the same count on other posts on their site. So, it doesn’t really look like these guys have their finger on the pulse or they’re not on the cutting edge of reality, or however you want to say it. I see also that other people have left comments trying to call them out on their nonsense and they have gotten about the same response you have.

  17. Wow. I am disappointed that they did not take more time to consider your comments.

    Where is their consideration of reproof?

  18. Bee,
    I think the overall point of this, or the takeaway from this, is to show what the mainstream thinks about these issues, and it is not good. But it’s good to know what is out there. I used to believe all this stuff. I was like the horse, Boxer, in the story The Animal Farm, who was exploited and when criticized, his only response was “I will work harder.”

    The other thing it shows is that you cannot convince someone or change their mind via debate. (Well, you can, but only in rare cases.) People only defend their positions. But that doesn’t mean the debate is not good. Reading and examining these issues is good for me, I can tell you that.

  19. The pathology is a constant harping on men needing to “step up”: even if it’s just that 5% that SCott Williams was blathering about.

    One way you know you’re in a churchian church is when you hear platitudes about men needing to “man up” or “step up”. The minute anyone hears that, he needs to step not up, but out and away.

  20. Such as advice to men to be responsible, take charge, pray, etc. What could be wrong with that?

    I allowed for that in my response. I usually try and make it clear that I am not anti correction of men. Goodness, that would be just as bad as what I’m trying to point out.
    To some extent I can see that challenges to the site and ideology and their airing is not the purpose of the blog. The blog is the for men to respond to what is said, and to seek company of like minded or like experienced men. I get that.

    Its just that I do not know any other way to shake the tree. And, it’s precisely the man who would read there (uncritically, not readers like me looking for examples of evangelical feminism) seeking help, the man who finds himself in receipt of divorce papers one day, the the ensuing narrative that follows where he is labeled everything but a human, and the rush of well intended Christians to the aid of the wife as she detonates her family, that man needs to see something besides what is at that site. I know this very well, as does any man who has ever walked that path or known a man who has walked it, whether it ended in divorce or not. Even that man’s Christian friends are going to recommend he accept his fate as consequence for his sin, and that he simply be the best man he can be “for the kids”. Here again, not one thing wrong with that advice except in a vacuum its very cold comfort.

    The other man who needs to read it is the one whose wife is signalling discontentment. Maybe that manIS an overbearing ogre. OK, the site deals with that. Maybe the man is an emotional isolationist. They deal with that. So forth. BUT, that’s the totality. That IS what the premise is for that kind of help. There is zero allowance for the reality that it really is not, by the numbers, a social pathology of divorce caused by men who need to learn how to serve more. The guys who are doing well (and well enough is well enough to not have to fear divorce over the emotional whims of an unhappy woman) are even challenged that it is still their 5% they must fix. I truly get the intent of that point. But sadly the reality on the ground is that most men getting divorce papers these days actually ARE men who are only 5% wrong.. It is illogical to imagine that that man can move to 1% wrong and have a different result. Christ is rejected, Himself. How in the world can the mantra of being more Christlike as NECESSARILY fixative be valid? yes, the man ought to do so anyway. But here is where the rubber meets the road. It is a little bit similar to the divorce and gay marriage debate in that the focus of Christian outreach is often about the innocent victims, not the individuals embroiled in the thing. Well, what about the children? What about the generations that follow in that family? Its palm to forehead frustrating to see this.

    Some may say it seems to be unfair to attack these ministries, that its taking pot shots about a subject that is a matter of opinion. In a way, that is true. It is fodder in some respects. But dang it, would we say that the onslaught of articles and letters I get attacking gay marriage and abortion are being handled unfairly? Would we suggest that the boycotts of businesses that are outed for donating to those causes is handled unfairly? No, Christians like their remonstrations served HOT. Listen for the Amens during the sermons on this matters. Why? because they (rightly) see peril and destruction resulting from those things.

    So much more (numbers wise) are the perils and destruction resulting from these lop sided efforts.

  21. Remanifested as Pendantic
    Shining Light on churchian quixotic

    Cloaked with stealth
    Mission objective: Our Godly cultural health

    Formerly in the throes of self and marital destruction
    Now crawling back with Holy Spirit reconstruction

    Defending the Word of God with zeal
    Only to Him shall I kneel

    These words I convey to my hommies
    Truths we share not derived from phonies

    For now I say, “Later”
    I pray continuous grace from our WONDERFUL CREATOR!

  22. Junkyard Dawg on January 10, 2014 at 2:13 pm said: “Also, there are only 8 comments on their post about marriage. Not 400. I see about the same count on other posts on their site.”

    Is suspect the low post count is because:

    1) Most of his readers are either women or fellow pastors–people looking for information on how to fix men, not self help for themselves.

    2) The information presented is simply a rehash of the conventional wisdom. There’s no reason for a man looking for self help material to comment or ask for further clarification, because he has heard this info 1,000 times before.

    FL is “doing the same thing over and over expecting different results.” Men reading his site know that the divorce problem in the church is getting worse, and following the same stale advice that led to divorce getting worse in the church won’t reverse the trend. FL’s “keep doing the same thing, but try harder” advice is no longer resonating.

  23. 8 to 12

    I think you got it right. If that man attends church he has heard it at the very least as many times as he, once past the age of lucidity, was in attendance on Fathers Day

  24. Pingback: I interrupt my regularly scheduled blogging to admonish women to grow up. | Loving in the Ruins

  25. @ Peaceful Wife:

    I read your blog from time to time and appreciate your admonishment to women. It’s important. I should add you to my blog roll, actually. I’ve neglected to do so.

    @ Eric:

    I just wrote a post to support this one, chocked full of links to posts I’ve written over the past 5 years that I’m sure you would appreciate. There are posts there from as far back as 2008. And I wasn’t the only one even back then. “Back then” isn’t that long ago, but 5 years is a lot in Internet years.

    So there are women making a concerted effort to balance the scales, correct women, and help women get a clue. We’re swimming upstream on our side however, just as men like Empath are swimming upstream on the masculine side.

  26. Ballista:
    “And profits.”

    Exactly. When you consider the billion-dollar-a-year industries that these guys are engaged in, nobody’s going to take advice like Empath’s seriously. As an interesting comparison, look at contemporary Christian books on nearly any topic and compare them with ones from 100 years ago. The older ones were usually well thought-out treatises by men with Th.D and D.D. or MSgr. after their names—now anybody with a ‘marketing angle’ or a phony degree can say whatever the want, but the truth and deep thought is rarely encountered.

  27. Peacefulwife:

    “Be sure you’re in the right, then go ahead.”—-David Crockett

    Elspeth:
    Thanks—I’ll look over your links. You’re right, it’s an uphill battle; probably moreso for women since the culture encourages femihag groupthink and deserters from the ‘approved’ PC ideologies are seen as twiice as dangerous as men.

  28. @Eric

    When you consider the billion-dollar-a-year industries that these guys are engaged in, nobody’s going to take advice like Empath’s seriously.

    Exactly. No one has ever lost any money in this modern church by feeding the Feminist Hamster. Most all of what is on the bookstores and in the CDs and in the pulpits today is feel-good tripe, which is pretty useless in the long run for a number of reasons.

    One of my thoughts has been for a while to get into preaching or book writing (*), but like I’ve told people, they wouldn’t like me because I stick to the Scripture and don’t entertain. lozozozozozozl

    (*) – I have thought about writing something and putting it on a place like Amazon like some of the other bloggers, but not sure I could get the time to do it justice given all the other stuff going on at the moment.

  29. Without getting into the obvious lack of accountability on the female side of things, from the church, I want to say there is not so much wrong with the”man up”, “step up” talk, so much as what it is lacking. What is lacking is teaching men how to be “spiritual warriors”. As with all dimensions of Christianity, we are all in a spiritual war, as has been the case for six thousand years or so. Then, in the case of marriage, the enemy needs to be identified ( as in the spirit of feminism), and then make a plan to battle it. Unfortunately it is only us who have swallowed the red pill that knows this and is making an effort. Part of that training would be studying in the bible how Elijah stepped up and confronted Jezebel (aka “spirit of feminism”). We need to pray for a “spirit of Elijah” to rise up!

  30. What is lacking is teaching men how to be “spiritual warriors”

    Not sure I agree. Here is why.

    I am all about the spiritual warfare aspect of this. Elijah confronted. We need to confront. After prayer and repentence, and discerning if we are angry and bitter, or if we are genuine in concern for people, men women and children, we must.
    confront.
    We must also not leave the plight of unbelievers out of our concerns and actions because sadly where goes culture goes the church and no where is that more evident than the matter of divorce.

  31. Not sure where you disagree. Confronting the actual enemy, feminism, is what needs to be done. My point was that it ain’t gonna happen because we have churchian leaders and organizations like FL, that are being deceived and can’t see the actual enemy.

  32. Greg, I don’t really disagree, poor word choice because you did not suggest what I was disagreeing with, and I did not articulate that very well.

    I was making a somewhat pedestrian remark, the cliche “so heavenly minded no earthly good” would fit what i was saying….but you did not go there. Mea culpa

  33. I also responded to the aforementioned article, I am trying to introduce the red pill in a slower way than empathologism (I believe both methods of introduction have value) my first comment was

    “Usually a man breaks his vow to choose, love and protect her before a woman breaks her vow to be faithful.”
    -is this anecdotal or is there any empirical evidence for this statement? It is likely anecdotal and likely incorrect. He probably stopped being attractive to his wife and then she strayed.

    The problem with articles like this is they fail to state the most important thing a man needs to know about maintaining a marriage. The most important thing is a man needs to be attractive to his wife. If she is attracted to him she will follow him, she will not stray. These articles mention almost nothing about maintaining attraction.

    Find out what kind of man your wife is attracted to and be that man. That is how you love your wife.

    which was followed by a response I expected:
    Scott Williams’s GravatarScott WilliamsJanuary 14, 2014
    Thanks for your insightful questions and comments, jones. The point Jeff makes here is I believe the same one you may be trying to make. A woman is attracted her man’s commitment to love and protect her. When she no longer sees that (which could be his actions or her attitude, but usually a combination of both), she entertains the idea of searching elsewhere for someone with those attractive qualities. We as guys need to remember that women are not as visually oriented as we are, so the things they find attractive are often actions.

    We recently ran a two-post series on “The Irresistible Man.” Here’s the link: http://mensteppingupblog.com/2014/01/02/irresistible-man-1/

    my response to that is where I wanted to get but is in moderation currently and I would appreciate support on that site from those who agree:

    “A woman is attracted her man’s commitment to love and protect her.”

    And this is where you are completely wrong either because you are misguided, misinformed or intentionally misleading. A woman is not attracted to a man’s commitment to love and protect her, She wants commitment, love and protection from a man she is attracted to. Attraction is primarily biological (you can look it up) but I know you don’t believe me so try an experiment and let me know how it goes. Pick any woman in the world you are not currently in a relationship with and tell her you promise to do all the things in this article forever for her. How will she respond? She will call you a creep and tell you to leave her alone unless she is already attracted to you.

    “When she no longer sees that (which could be his actions or her attitude, but usually a combination of both), she entertains the idea of searching elsewhere for someone with those attractive qualities. We as guys need to remember that women are not as visually oriented as we are, so the things they find attractive are often actions.”

    Partially true but mostly false. Women may be less visual than men when it comes to attraction but that does not mean they are less shallow or entirely non-visual. Women are attracted to (in order) looks – visual matters to women too see people magazine for examples, athleticism – physical fitness matters to women almost as much as men, money – a woman does want to be provided for especially by someone she is physically attracted to, power – a woman does want to be protected especially by someone she is physically attracted to and status – social dominance is a key component for women especially if money and power are limited.

    Many of the things in this article and ones like it are helpful if the man is attractive to his wife they do not however, build attraction. Attraction is built thru looks, athleticism, money, power and status (LAMPS). Every woman will desire the items in this article from a man who has enough LAMPS to attract them based on the woman’s’ own relative value in the marriage marketplace.

    You may not understand the last sentence so if I may, a man’s natural (sinful) tendency is towards polygamy a woman’s natural (sinful) tendency is towards hypergamy (again look it up).”

    I am for maintaining the pressure on all these churchian organizations until some of their people swallow the pill. But y’all do whatever you want.

  34. when a Liberal says “we’ll have to agree to disagree” you have won. and they now have feelbad and mindhurt and you must be removed in order for them to have feelgood again. It’s just as well as you can’t convince them of anything anyway. Their brains don’t work right and there is simply no way for you to transmit the information to them at any level before their mindhurt / feelbad alarms start sounding and you need to be kicked off the island. Don’t overthink it, there really isn’t any more to it than that.

  35. I don’t know if it makes a difference, but there are definitely movements encouraging women to submit to biblical headship. My church has only one divorced woman that I know of, and her husband had multiple affairs before she divorced him (and now they’re considering reconciling and remarrying, after both cleaned up their sin issues). As women we study through Martha Peace’s book, “The Excellent Wife” every few years. That book, demanding with a scriptural case the absolute necessity of biblical submission, literally saved my marriage. My husband didn’t change – but by God’s grace and power I did a 180. Now, five years down the road from there, I have a fantastic marriage that has grown stronger and deeper with each passing year. My husband is a sinner just like me, but a God was so good in giving me a truly worthy man after His own heart. When I stopped sinning against god and my husband, it’s amazing how our marriage improved. Full stop, my sin was destroying my house and grieving my God and spouse, too. And our church was brave enough to address this for me and several dozen other women. Biblical marriages, with appropriate male headship and the absolutely crucial feminine submission, are both modeled and preached from the pulpit.

    Likewise, the men are instructed by Stuart Scott’s “The Exemplary Husband”. I would not say this book is nearly as necessary because, quite frankly, the women struggle in our church far more than the men. It’s absolutely true that we’ve been perverted culturally in ways our husbands aren’t vulnerable to – feminism had it’s way. But for the families who have sin issues entrenched in the husbands as well as the wives the Scott resource is a fine book on the subject and doesn’t do what the ministries mentioned in this post are guilty of.

    Still, take heart – our congregation has about 40 families (and most of us have 3-5 children), a dozen married couples with adult children, and a handful of singles – all hearing and being discipled in the appropriate and God-ordained role of a woman as the helpmeet to her husband. All counseling given and resources studied are in support of this view, and the fruit of it is nuclear families who are staying together, through good and bad, for the glory of God.

    I absolutely credit the graciousness of God and the braveness of the elders to target the women as the key factor. And not all feminists struggling in their marriages view this as anathema – someone coming around and giving me hope based soundly in scripture, that there was an ANSWER to my marital issues and it had to do with laying my sins at the foot of the cross and repenting, was like fresh water for me. Or air. I felt mortified at my sin and grieved deeply, but knowing that God had given me all the information and ability I needed, as a believer, to FIX this as move forward in a way that honored him and my family? I was so grateful it is beyond description.

    Maybe there isn’t the financial profit in these ministries – but surely there are still women in these churches who, like me, desire the authority and correction of scripture to heal what sin breaks in the marriage covenant.

  36. The fundamental problem is that Christian women are being given get out of marriage free cards while Christian men are being told man up and marry these Christian women . This selective moral softness from Christians combines with our legal system which rewards women who commit divorce theft and creates millions of fatherless children . Your husband looked at porn? Dump him and find another man! Keep in mind this isn’t some corner case example I’ve made up. This is from the movie Christians profess shows their views on marriage. Moreover, Sheila isn’t just another commenter on the internet, she is a respected author and speaker on the topic of marriage for Christian women. All men need to understand this; if your wife decides to divorce you for another man, there will be well respected Christians lining up to justify her decision and place all of the blame on you. If that means conflating viewing pornography with actual adultery, so be it. This is true even in cases where the wife was withholding sex in an effort to control the husband. She even excuses the wife lining up the other man while still married.

  37. I attend Church in the Wildwood up in Alaska (wildwoodak.org would be the website, with sermons posted online). We’re non-denominational, just a stand-alone bible church that was originally a Southern Baptist church plant decades ago. Both pastors are graduates of Masters Seminary, so of the John MacArthur bent. Perhaps a little overly cessationist for my husband and myself, but absolutely solid expositors of scripture and faithful men of The Lord, who lead their families well.

  38. This video was posted on another blog yesterday, and I wanted to post it here:

    Notice how out-of-touch the three media dunderheads are, especially the dork with the yellow tie. This is exactly how male feminists and churchian blockheads think.

    The psychologist made a lot of good points, one especially towards the end: “It’s easy to sit here as high-level men and say things are going well for you but that doesn’t reflect the state of most men at other levels.”

    Good point. I wonder just how insulated from reality many of these ‘stepping up’ advocates are?

  39. The main issue, Cathy, is that marriage 2.0 is disposable. Sure, guys leave their wives and trade up. So do women. However, you’re making it sound like male adultery is the leading cause for divorce, but when I went through my own divorce, my LMFT told me that the “walkaway wife syndrome” is actually the leading cause of divorce. Women get bored and want to move on to something else, and the law subsidizes their decision to do so due to the overwhelming presumption of mother custody, coupled with child support standards that clearly incorporate an alimony element into them (if you are keeping the child in the same standard, you are de facto keeping mom in the same standard, which means de facto it is alimony).

  40. Pingback: The new sexual morality: Will the bra open for you? | Dalrock

  41. Eric wrote As an interesting comparison, look at contemporary Christian books on nearly any topic and compare them with ones from 100 years ago. The older ones were usually well thought-out treatises by men with Th.D and D.D. or MSgr. after their names—now anybody with a ‘marketing angle’ or a phony degree can say whatever the want, but the truth and deep thought is rarely encountered.

    As I’ve pointed out elsewhere, the travesty here is that this churchian twaddle, most of it devoid of any serious biblical grounding, is supplanting the Bible itself in too many churchs’ “Bible” studies, lazy and biblically illiterate churchians not wanting to be bothered with having to wade through the Scriptures themselves to discover the truth for themselves. This stuff is the equivalent of pre-digested infant formula made from chocolate cake mix: it’s tasty and easy for the infant to consume, but poisonous to its system and harmful to its development.

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