I just was twittering back and forth with a fellow who quoted a fellow who said, “The Church has been over mothered and under fathered.” Well, I did not know what that meant so I asked. He replied, “He was talking about the sometimes lack of masculine influence in worship.” Well, I did not understand that so I asked what he meant. He replied, “Specifically some lyrics that even he has written that may be hard for men to sing.” So I thought, hum, interesting. There were so many thoughts that ran through my head like, “What emotions are we asking men to sing that they should not sing because they’re men?” or “For men to feel comfortable singing in church do we have to sing only songs of conquest?” or “The congregation is made up of men and women so if a guy has to sing something a bit feminine shouldn’t he just get over it ’cause his wife and daughter might like to sing it?” or “Should we tell all pastors to stop using football, battle, and aggressive type illustrations in their sermons ’cause that doesn’t draw women to church?” And let’s not forget that not all women are sappy either.
Ok, now people say that there are typically more women in church than men and for that reason maybe we should consider making church more ‘friendly’ to men. I know that John Eldridge says that we do not challenge men enough in church, that we ask them to be nice like Mr. Rogers. However, we do not ask them to be warriors like Jesus…sorry, was he a warrior? I know, I know, He will come as victor and will lead in battle against His enemies. He did face down the religious leaders of His day and was extremely counter culture…all that takes great bravery and courage. I am all about manning up to situations and standing up like a man and all that. Challenges are vital. Let’s not just be nice…but lets have patience, self-control, faithfulness, gentleness and joy. Are those masculine characteristics? Anyway, it seems like if the problem is that men are not attracted to church then we need to talk to the men who are leading the church to attract them.
Now, I really think that the problem we have here is not about song lyrics, majority church membership or leadership. I think it is about living a missional incarnational life. But that is another post..