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I'd Like to Go Fishing With Jesus

Though the vast majority of church leadership is male, the primary expressions of worship and spirituality are female. I don't love my dad or my friends by closing my eyes and raising my hands to the sky while singing, "I'm desperate for you," or "You are the air I breathe.' I can do this toward God sometimes, but at other times, I'd like to worship Him a little more actively. I don't naturally gravitate toward having quiet times with Jesus, where I simply bask in His love. My biological dad and I don't bask in each other's love. We go fishing. I'd like to go fishing with Jesus.

More than any recent Christian author, John Eldredge has tapped into this reality. He reminds us of the fierce and wild God of the Scriptures and the untamed revolutionary named Jesus, both of whom encourage men to worship as men.

Yes, we begin with the simple truth that being a man is a good thing. We don't have anything to apologize for. Our desires for sex, success, significance, and competition are good things if we direct them properly. The fact that my boy loves to throw rocks and jump off stuff (all while attempting to do great bodily harm to his dad) is a good thing. Yes, we are sinful and tarnished. But the fall has not pushed out all the goodness of God's creation.

We acknowledge all the hurt and pain that men have caused in th past: the oppression of women and minorities, the chauvinism disguised as Christian theology, and our absence from our homes and families (regardless of whether we were physically there). At the same time, we affirm that masculinity itself is not the issue. Rather, masculinity that is functioning outside of God's intent is behind these things.

We begin by reminding ourselves that our maleness and our masculinity are good things! We begin by expressing gratitude for how God has made and designed us. We begin, not by looking to Hollywood or Washington DC, or even our own families for an image of what it means to be masculine. We begin by placing ourselves back when the universe was new and unblemished, when God revealed His design for men in the way He created Adam and in what He called Adam to do.

Excerpt from Why Guys Need God, available on Books.


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husband to Justina; father to Nathan, Hannah and Seth; pastor and teacher living in Southern California; author of 4 books, the latest of which just was released and is called 'Why The Bible Matters.'