My First Rant.....(show me some grace)


Frankly, I'm a little upset. No...actually I'm pissed. Sorry if that offends you. And I know full well that you shouldn't type blogs when you're angry. I also know that what I'm going to write is going to make it look like I think I'm all high and mighty and I've got life figured out. Forgive me for not caring too much. The truth is, is that I do have some of life figured out and if more Christians knew.....or believed...what I'm about to write then the world would be a whole lot better off.

Let me explain why I'm upset. Men that I know, good men who love God keep getting taken out. They are falling prey to addictions. They are falling prey to affairs. They are falling prey to the lies of Satan and I'm seeing my friends and people close to me becoming casualties. Families are being ruined. The impact of these casualties is always widespread.
And simply put, it sucks!

I'm not mad at the men themselves who have made mistakes, and I don't favor kicking a man while he's down. What I'm angry at is the preparation. You know the best way to guarantee that you will become a casuality is to live a casual life. And I'm perplexed by the contemporary Christian Church and it's acceptance of "casual." We are not called to live a casual life. If you are a Christ follower you are called to live a crucial life.

Can I just clear something up? I don't think men need more discipline. I don't think we need to learn more Bible verses. And I don't think that learning to keep our promises is going to fix the problem either. Going to church every Sunday and getting inspired for a few hours does little to help and most of us have learned how to fake our way through a Bible study course. We need two things. The first is understanding.

We need to understand that we each have a crucial role to play in the story that God is writing. That crucial role is written on our hearts in the form of desire. If we do not find that which we were created for, we will fall prey to all sorts of counterfits to fill the void. But they will not satisfy the aching places in us.

We need to understand that we live in a world at war. We have an enemy who works 24 hours a day 365 days a year at destroying the image of God in you and trying to keep you from your glory. You cannot approach this battle in a casual manner. Passivity and Christianity cannot go together. It is an oxymoran. You name one passive man held up in scripture as an example that we are to follow. But yet, how many Christian men do you know who are passive? It only goes to show how far we have strayed from an accurate, biblical, picture of the Christian life as warfare. If you do not fight for the life you desire in Christ you will get taken out. Usually just withdrawn, on the sidelines, ineffective type of men. Or, these men have a gut feeling that they really should be fighting for something so they pick a small battle and make their life about getting all of the neighbors to comply with the CC&R's or something even more important like fighting through church legislation to get new choir robes.....stuff like that.

So we need understanding. We need clarity. But the second thing is we need to be made whole. Understanding and clarity don't bring healing. We need to take Jesus up on his offer to come and do what he said he came to do. To heal the brokenhearted and set us free. At the center of the battle is our hearts. And if we do not get that back, whole and free and alive, then we don't stand a chance. The battle is too difficult, the role God has for us too great....we simply will not get there by being half hearted.

So what is my point in writing all of this on a hunting blog? I don't know, I think it started by just blowing off some steam from the latest dissapointment. But maybe what I wrote will help someone. Maybe for some the message will click and a light will go off and you will have some understanding maybe for the first time in your life. I first understood that message at age 28 after being a Christian my whole life and going to church my whole life and going to Christian high school and Christian college. But I never got it. And then I hit a low point in life. I read "Wild at Heart" and it just clicked. Suddenly, the frustrating Christian life I had been trying to live but never could quite get my act together enough for started to make perfect sense. But understanding does not equal healing. And knowing does not make you whole. But the next 4 years of my life was an amazing time of God taking me through the things he wanted to show me. I haven't by any means arrived. But the journey has been a good one and I pray that more men will journey with God into what He has for them.

One more thing I guess. Would you pray with me that our churches start becoming a more relevant place for men and boys to be challenged to enter into a crucial kind of life and discover all that God has for them?



Unknown July 15, 2010 at 11:37 PM  

Incredible!!I agree and believe all that you have written. Affairs, addictions and abuse is widespread and very common in our churches, with family and friends. As a wife of a wonderful husband and the mother of a beautiful son, I definitely agree to pray for our churches to challenge men and boys in the areas you wrote. They are the head of the household and our sons are our future.
Ron is currently reading Wild at Heart and is enjoying it as well. Guess you'll have something to talk about next time you cross paths.
Great post Scott!

Anonymous,  July 16, 2010 at 9:47 AM  

Love your style bro!! I too share in your disgust at the apathy and frankly the sissyness that a lot of Christian men have towards lots of things.
God calls us all to live for Him and His glory and to die to our flesh daily. It's really hard and we all have unique sin we deal with every day. The apostle Paul expressed his frustration in Romans when he says ...."I do the very things I don't want to do, etc......". Paul fought his flesh all the time and I believe that Paul wanted us to know that we too will have to fight on a daily basis. The hard thing for most people to understand is the dichotomy of fighting and surrendering all at the same time. We have to do our part in the fight and cooperate with the Holy Spirit. But before the Holy Spirit can get involved, we have to surrender control to Him. Zech 4:6 says "Not by my might, nor by my power, but by His Spirit...". On our own, we'll fall for what our flesh wants. The surrender to our fleshly desires on a daily basis is the "battle" and the key to our heart is the "war". God wants our heart and through His grace, forgives our mistakes.
If you think about the Prodigal son story....the story doesn't make it into the Bible if the Prodigal son doesn't fight the voices in his head to rebel, surrender himself, humble himself, come home and repent. If he would have said screw it, I'll go do something else and never returned home, the father could have never shown him grace and mercy and the son could have never been restored. We have to teach each other to fight and surrender at the same time. We have to get them to drink the truth so they can fight the lies. What should break our hearts more, are the people who are lukewarm, know it and want to stay there.

God shares your heart Scott as do I. With His help, we will get to as many men as we can. We must walk by faith knowing that He will empower us to fulfill His purposes if we'll listen and be obedient.

Peace out,

Mike Riddle

Matthew July 16, 2010 at 1:05 PM  

I hear what you are saying. I see the complacency of christians and it makes me sad. We need to be active and we need to fight. Our best weapon is love. Thanks for sharing your heart and being bold.

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