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Congrats Paul!

Posted: 2011 05 05 by Jeremiah Alsbrook in Hardcore Christian Men
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Earlier this week Paul contacted me and asked me if I would be willing to post an article since he would be out of town attending his graduation ceremony.  I told him that it would be no problem at all.  I wrestled with what to write about, but then something dawned on me.  Being in the ministry I know what it’s like to pour your life into something and never be acknowledged for it.  Although I am aware that our reward is in heaven, it is nice to have a little encouragement every now and then.  So today I want to firstly congratulate Paul on his graduation but more importantly I want to thank him for doing his very best to be a hardcore Christian man.

Ironically enough, Paul and I have never met face to face.  We crossed paths about a year or so ago via a forum for Christian gamers.  I know…. I know we’re nerds.  We began chatting about theology here and there and started playing a few video games together.  The interesting thing was that the majority of our conversations had nothing to do with the game.  We didn’t talk about the tank that was blowing us to bits or the Apache that was strafing our spawn.  We always somehow managed to talk about Jesus and different aspects of the Bible.  Paul then began to let me know about his heart for ministry and that he wanted to see people get saved!  His driving passion was to see people grow in Jesus after that salvation experience.  We talked on a rather consistent basis about the lack of maturity amongst most Christians, especially the male demographic.  To further complicate the problem the large majority of men showed no initiative whatsoever in growing their faith.  This was probably the topic that dominated the majority of our conversations.

However, Paul and his wife were moving, and he seemingly dropped off the face of the earth for a bit. But once they got settled in, he resurfaced online. This time Paul had a plan and what I believe to be a God given one at that.  He began talking to me about this idea for a website to help Christian men along in their faith.  A site that would give men small bits of Scripture and teaching that when applied would strengthen that faith.  Since its inception Hardcore Christian Men has had somewhere around 2400 views.  Paul sacrifices his time nearly each and every day to write about what the Lord has laid on his heart in hopes of impacting Christian men all over the world.  So today, I want to tell Paul congrats and thank you for being a hardcore Christian man.

In Christ,

Jeremiah

Women… You don’t know how to live with them, but you couldn’t imagine life without them.  Some of us try to understand them the very best that we can, but in the long run they turn out to be some sort of extremely beautiful rubix cube.  Even though we will never have the pleasure of completely understanding them, women quickly become the object of our desires.  Sadly, this infatuation has also lead to a complete degradation of women.  Women are now the temporal object of most young men.  The guy keeps the girl just long enough to “get his,” and then he is off to his next “conquest.”  This idea that women have become disposable sex toys is sickening.  The culture and media shove this lifestyle down the throats of young men and they receive it as the only available option.  “That is how we are supposed to act.”  Some manage to stay in a relationship for a bit longer, but it is only until things get “stale”.  However, I would like to offer two simple thoughts that would challenge the cultural view on women.  These will hopefully cause you to treat her right… just like the precious jewel that she is.

The first step in treating a woman right is understanding why she was created.  In Genesis 2, we see that for whatever reason man needed a helper.  We just couldn’t handle the pressure all by ourselves.  That was a really big garden to keep organized and apparently we were not very good at it back then either.    So God gave man this gorgeous assistant in the form Eve.  God put Adam to sleep and made her from one of his ribs.  I would like to digress for a moment and state that I believe there is significance here.  God could have created woman out of anything or nothing, but instead He created her from man’s side.  This was probably done to show the intimate connection that a man and a woman are to have with one another.  Many men have traded this connection in for what has been called a “hit it and quit it” mentality.  The man is guilty of cheapening the design that God put in place.  How is a woman ever to complete the man if she is constantly being traded off for the “newest model?”  Men must understand that the woman (his wife) was created to be an intricate part of his life.  Therefore, men should treat any and every woman with respect and dignity knowing that she is to complete someone, and that someone may not be you.  We can not allow ourselves to continually take pieces from each woman that we are attracted to.  How much will they have left for the man they are supposed to complete?

The second point is probably among the most popular in Christian circles.  Sex is something that was designed for marriage.  Therefore, you must treat her correctly so that you won’t slip into that sin.  However, Christian men think they have found a loop hole in the form of a question.  “How far is too far?”  They have this mentality that they want to get as close as possible without actually being engaged in that sin.  However, I suggest they are asking the wrong question.  Instead of asking “how close can I get to this sin,” they should be asking “how close can I get to the Father.”  If a man’s focus is truly in the right place he reduces his chances of trying the “loop hole” mentality.

As Christian men, we need to step up in this particular area.  Don’t let culture continue to dictate how women are treated.  Next to salvation a wife is the most incredible gift that a man could ever attain.  Let’s make sure that we take great care of them until that time comes.  Treat her right!

 

 

 

 

 

Decisions, decisions, decisions!  We have to make them all of the time.  Some of them are pretty simple to make!  Such as: ESPN or HGTV, football or ice skating, steak or salad, Rambo or a Lifetime special?  These are no-brainers!  However, when it comes to the really important things, men have become incredibly indecisive.  I’m not talking about where you plan on eating dinner or whether or not you should get a HEMI.  I’m talking about being confronted by God almighty and having to make the decision to obey or turn away.

I think of Moses who was called by God to head back to Egypt and lead God’s people out of the land.  The call was pretty direct in Exodus 3 but instead of jumping at the opportunity to do something for the Lord, my man gets cold feet.  “I don’t know God.  People aren’t really going to believe that “You” actually sent me.  They are going to think that all this time in the desert has made me a little crazy.  On top of that, public speaking isn’t really my thing…  Oh, and I kind of killed a man there, so I’m probably wanted for murder.”

Although God doesn’t really do the whole burning bush thing anymore, He is still working in the lives of people all over the world!  He is giving them the opportunities to do great things for the Kingdom of God, and we respond much like Moses.  “I can’t because… I’m no good at…. I’ve got other things to do… That’s not for me… You’ve got the wrong guy.”  When are we going to start seizing the chance to do something for our Savior?  Imagine if we all started to respond like Isaiah.

In Isaiah 6, God needs someone to go speak to His people.  Isaiah was aware of his inadequacies, but he didn’t even think twice about it.  Even after God let him know that his ministry was going to harden the hearts of many people, his response was a simple one.  One that I believe Christians in general need to get back to using.  “I’ll do it. Send me!”  When was the last time we responded to God in that way?  How many opportunities have we missed as a result of our indecision?  How many more times are we going to cower down and make excuses?  We’ve got to realize one simple truth.  We are not guaranteed tomorrow.  So man up and “decide” today!


Masculinity!  A term that is quickly associated with blood, guts, RPMs, football, and an unkempt living space known as “the man-cave.”  However, a simple definition is “traditional manly qualities.”  In a day where anything coined “traditional” is being thrown out the window, masculinity has taken quite the hit!  Some say a real man is one who can bench 350, build an engine from the ground up, and force his wife into some sort of indentured servitude after he comes home from a long day of work.  Teenage boys believe that 18 is the mystical number that transforms them into some sort of testosterone-fueled being known as “a man.”  Others would say that a “manly man” is one who fulfills his role as a father, husband, employer, or employee.  It is a man who sets goals and sees them through to finality.  We can use this same premise as an application to biblical masculinity.

Our role or purpose in life as believers is to glorify our Savior God (Isaiah 43:7).  In order for us to fulfill that role, we must become something that is truly able to glorify the Father.  When we get saved we are freed from the penalty of sin and the Spirit begins to work in us and through us.  Since our sin is covered under the blood of Jesus we are now able to glory in the God that saves as well as glorify Him through our lives!  However, let’s keep in mind that a real man does his job well.  He doesn’t settle for mediocrity.  He doesn’t cut corners.  He gives it his all.  If we want to truly glorify our Lord we must go hard after Him, allowing the Spirit to continue its work of sanctification.  Sanctification is the life-long process of a believer allowing the Spirit to work in their lives and become more and more like Jesus.  It is striving to be holy as He is holy (1 Peter 1:14-16).  Through this process we are better able to complete the tasks that the Lord gives us in whatever capacity they may be.  Therefore, rather than masculinity becoming some point or place to be reached in a man’s life, it is better termed a life-long process through which a man is continually being molded and shaped into one that glorifies, honors, and serves his Savior.

This is where we separate the men from the boys.  This notion of sanctification is extremely difficult.  Sanctification is meant strictly for the hardcore.  You think about it.  If striving to be more and more like Jesus on a daily basis was easy, I’m pretty sure we would see a lot more guys like Peter, Paul, and Timothy.  Although they were imperfect they set their sights on pleasing the Lord regardless of how difficult it would be.  “Boys” don’t like the idea of being beaten, mocked, shipwrecked, and imprisoned for the sake of their beliefs.  “If that’s what can happen if I get too serious about this Jesus guy, I think I’ll just stick with the fire insurance.  I’ll leave that crazy Jesus freak stuff to somebody else.”  We must settle in our hearts and minds that growing closer to Jesus is worth the price.  Being sanctified daily and pursuing biblical masculinity is worth it!

Masculinity is a process, not a place.  It’s a journey, not a destination.