You Got This: An Open Letter to Men
It’s Sunday and it’s Father’s day!
I was talking with a friend this week and he mentioned how Father’s Day is not much on his radar. The man who raised him had passed away and he never really knew his biological father.
I commented that Father’s Day is the hardest Sunday of the year as a pastor. It’s even more challenging than Mother’s Day.
Summer has already started and Sundays are filled with BBQ, swimming, weddings, graduations, and more. And attendance on Sundays is low because of these things. But on Father’s Day? People don’t want to be reminded of their estranged relationships with the father. Women may struggle with infertility, but everyone struggles with broken and absent relationships.
In addition, the Church has done some things to separate men from us over the years. We lavish praise on our mothers, sisters, wives, and women mentors on Mother’s day. But on Father’s day? We often tell them everything they are doing wrong and how to fix it.
We focus on what they are doing wrong
In recent media, men have earned their fair share of criticism. But what if we took the time to lift us those who are striving for good?
I have read the statistics. Children are more likely to become productive, creative, contributors of society when a father or father-figure is in the picture. Children need both a mother and father figure in their lives. And children will seek one out if it’s not there. Children are also 80% more likely to stay strong in their faith if their father attends church with the family or takes them to church himself.
For every man who is sitting in the pew on Sunday, you are telling our children a different story. You are sending a positive message they are not getting out in the world. You remind them that men are capable of loving God and submitting to others out of reverence to Christ. You teach them there is a better way to solve our problems. You show them that community is important and we can learn from one another. You show that the little things shape our world and make us better people. And you give them a place to belong!
On Father’s Day, every man that participates in congregational worship fills the gap. You can bring wholeness by simply participating in the life of the Church.
So here is something you may not have heard in a long time…
Men, we need you! And we especially need you as part of the Body of Christ. Be humble. Be faithful. Be available. Be present. But most of all, be Christ-like.
Well said Pastor JoAnn!!’