Last night I was able to get together with some other guys I meet with every two weeks.  Our discussion focused on where God is in our life and what he’s up to.  In our conversation we talked about being unsure of who we are, but wanting to do something bold and really live for God.  It also included discussing are we doing what we believed God has called us to do.  Throughout the conversation I could see and hear the desires of these men to really live out what they were talking about.

Later in the night after our conversation was over and I was processing the discussion it occurred to me, we all have insecurities, we battle sin daily and we worry about making mistakes and what others will think of us. We all attend churches filled with broken people and many of those people put on their church face every Sunday.  It’s often difficult to be real about who we are in church because of rejection.

From the moment we are conceived God has a plan for us.  Psalm 139:13 For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. God’s has created and gifted us.  Many time as we grow and experience life we are unsure what we are supposed to do.  We are uncomfortable in our own skin.  We have a tendency to think at a certain point we will have it all together and yet when we hit that point, we still feel like we don’t have it together. So something is missing or lacking, we aren’t who we thought we should be, we aren’t good enough, attractive enough or well liked.  We begin questioning if God has any purpose for us.  It’s at that moment when we start questioning that Satan starts deterring us from our calling.  God knows everything about us, he created us, he knows both the good and the bad, our strengths and our weaknesses. We may doubt our abilities, but I don’t believe God does.

We need other men to speak into our lives.  To encourage us, to show us that we can do it and when we are down and out to build us up, energize, inspire and affirm we can do it.  We also need other men who are willing to walk down the road with us and help us grown and become the men we are supposed to be.  We need older men to affirm us, disciple us and teach us from their life experiences. Titus 2:2, 6 – 8 Teach the older men to be temperate, worthy of respect, self-controlled, and sound in faith, in love and in endurance. 6 Similarly, encourage the young men to be self-controlled. 7In everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity, seriousness 8 and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned, so that those who oppose you may be ashamed because they have nothing bad to say about us.

We all experience life to varying degrees.  The ups and downs of life challenge us.  We don’t live in a perfect world and so we make mistakes.  It’s in making mistakes where we grow.  We don’t get to be the people we are today without making mistakes.  You can’t grow and develop your character if you haven’t made mistakes.  I believe that God uses the trials we go through for character development.  Those storms of life we pass through are ways of teaching, training and strengthening us for what will come in the future.  It’s those experiences that prepare us for the battles that lie ahead. Mistakes give us wisdom to impart to others.

The church is a mess and if you have been in one for very long you will know this.  Every Sunday the church buildings fill with people who don’t have it all together, have sin in their yet we show up, put on a church face and make it appear as though they have it altogether.  I would venture to say the most common phrase on Sunday is “I’m fine”.   How is it possible we all have sin in our life and yet everything is fine.  Satan is alive and destroying people and lives, it can’t be fine.  For whatever reason Sundays at church is the one place we find it hard to be real, to be transparent and completely honest.  James 5:16 Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.  I don’t see this happening a lot, in fact I see men who are dying and want to talk, but can’t and won’t because of fear and rejection.

Jesus chose 12 men to do life with.  He spent day and night with them for 3 years, eating, traveling, bathing, disagreeing and pouring into them.  He walked with them, talked with them and in the end gave his life for them and the rest of us.  He lived out and showed them the example of what it could be like.  Being intentional and relational with other men, being bold, speaking truth, living out his calling and living life for something greater than himself.

Romans 12:4-6 Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. We have different gifts, according to the grace given us.

1 Peter 4:10 Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms.

It took me most of my 30’s to get comfortable with who I am.  It took me a long time to figure out who God created me to be and how he gifted me.  It took some key men speaking and pouring countless hours into my life.  As someone who doesn’t like to make mistakes, it’s been hard for me to accept it’s ok.  I am finally at a place where I am comfortable with who I am and I know and understand why I have gone through all I have.  I know the gifting God has placed in me and the calling he has on my life.  I am meant to connect men, encourage them, build them up, be there for them, lead strong and courageously.  Live out what it means to overcome a horrible past and allow God to use you to become a man to look to and follow. While I am not the smartest, fastest or best looking, I do have the ability to relate, connect and lead.

Read a book or take some personality tests.  Ask your friends or those closest to you where they see you are gifted.  Look at your life and see what comes naturally to you.  What are those passions and desires in you that just don’t seem to go away?  I believe it’s in those things that you will find the person God created you to be.  Mistakes, yes you are going to continue to make them.  Remember we learn, grow and develop our character from our mistakes.  So don’t be afraid of them, use them to your advantage.   Rejection is going to happen but it’s also a good reminder that while on earth Jesus was rejected time and time again and still is to this day.  Who and what we live for is what the world is rejecting, not us.

Start being the example in your life, at your church and in all other areas. Men it’s time to start living.  It’s time to start being the example and living out our calling.

Comments
  1. Moe says:

    This is good Chris. Everything you mention is actually the backbone of the Church. We have made it into an organization, and it’s a lot more than that. The Church is a live, breathing organism that reveals itself in people who are just as broken as we all are. If we only saw the potential in us. We would change the world.

  2. At 55, I’m still not comfortable with who I am, and definitely not “fine” enough to “put on a church face”. I do, however, have a passion, a desire, a gift, for writing. I’ve been trying more lately to use that gift for God. Thanks for a great article that struck many chords with me.

  3. Great topic and post Chris! I’ve been talking about the same stuff over here on the east coast. If Jesus and the disciples needed help who am I to try the go-it-alone road? Thanks for all the encouragement! God Bless!!

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