There are two commercials on TV right now that drive me nuts. (I know what you’re thinking… just two?) The first depicts two parents sitting across the breakfast table from each other enjoying their new fiber-rich cereal. They suddenly realize they’ve forgotten to purchase their son’s favorite cereal and panic sets in. As the 12 year old boy comes to the table they scramble in fear, the dad quickly covering the name of the cereal and lying to his son. They both sigh in great relief when the boy seems to actually enjoy the new cereal. The second involves a man who is searching for an internet cable. His wife and young daughter impatiently and sarcastically attempt to explain he no longer needs a cable because they have wi-fi. But the man continues to search and ask ridiculous questions much to the chagrin of his family. Is it me? Does anyone else have a problem with the way men are being portrayed in these and other commercials like them?
I know this trend isn’t new but that doesn’t make it any less disturbing. Advertisers have apparently found that bumbling, weak, fearful, idiotic, wimpy depictions of men are what sells products. Are we soon going to see Homer Simpson replace the handsome and rugged “Brawny” paper towel man?
Ask any psychologist and they will tell you that we come to an understanding of who God is from the example of our parents… and in particular our fathers. Look at how the media portrays them? Is it any wonder that it also portrays God or the belief in God as foolish, moronic, weak, and mindless? Men… the deck is stacked against you!
Last weekend, my church (Crossroads, Corona) did a special service directed particularly at the men of our congregation. The message was challenging. You men have been called to lead FEARLESS lives! Under the lordship and leadership of Jesus Christ you are meant to lead. Without the leadership of the men in this world, the church (as a whole) is not accomplishing all that it could for the Lord. It was powerful and challenging. By the end of the three services thousands of men stood in recognition of this calling on their lives. And, 141 came forward to dedicate or rededicate their lives to Lord. It was awesome and refreshing!
Men who stand up for God, who lead under His lordship are today’s counterculture. Praise God! I encourage all of you to take a stand. You not only are standing for Him, you are reflecting Him to your family and to our culture. The deck is stacked against you but DO NOT FEAR! If God is for you… who can be against you? I also want to encourage you not only to lead but to love. There is a love that you as men bestow on others that is not the same as the way women love. It is unique and it has the same power as Jesus’ love had on those whom He touched. Don’t be afraid to lead. Don’t be afraid to love.
May everything you do as you follow our Shepherd and lead us make our culture say, “D’oh” and turn to the Only One who can save them.
God, bless the men of this world! Endow them with the power of your Holy Spirit, with wisdom, and with your unfathomable, all-consuming love! In Jesus name, amen.