Arthur at “The Voice of One Crying Out in Suburbia” has written an excellent post called “Dudes need dudes to learn how to be dudes.” His post picks up where my post “My Word of Prophecy: Stop Listening to Prophetic Voices” leaves off, and then applies it to another post about manhood.
(As an aside, I’m overlooking Arthur calling my post title “clunky” because he also called it “clever.” I’m assuming the first adjective was a mistake…)
Arthur recognizes that less mature brothers in Christ need more mature brothers in Christ as examples to follow. (In the same vein, of course, the same could be said for women.)
In most churches, the guy everyone is supposed to look up to is the pastor. This raises an issue because the way we have created a separate clerical class means that a) most men are not going to find much in common with the pastor and b) secretly most men have little interest in being a vocational minister so there is not much that seems desirable from an imitation standpoint. Most pastors seem stressed, overworked, underappreciated and generally frustrated and unhappy in spite of the happy face they put on. Who wants to imitate that? Compounding this, many times the pastor is younger and frankly less mature than many of the other men in a congregation. Not less “mature” in the sense of being able to delvier a sermon or exegete a passage of Scripture or throw out Greek and Hebrew terms, less “mature” in the sense that actually matters. Who should a young husband and father emulate and seek to learn from, a guy his own age who is starting a family and struggling in the same ways just because he is the pastor or a more mature older brother who has come out on the other side and has the experience to match?
There is much, much more to Arthur’s post. He even tackles the problem of “celebrity preachers”…
As I’ve said several times on this blog, I believe this is an important (and missing) aspect of discipleship among the church. We need more mature examples to follow. However, for most of us, we tend to learn from and follow people that we don’t really know.
Thanks for the reminder, Arthur!