Links to Start the Week

  1. Al Mohler on President Obama and same sex marriage.
  2. 10 reasons why Kodak, Blackberry, Yahoo & other major brands fail.
  3. Brad Lomenick on How to lead millennials.
  4. Parents, cuddle with your children.
  5. Critics and character. Some good points here.
  6. Crossway has all of their ebooks at $5.99 for the next 5 days.
  7. J.D. Greear on What it takes to reach college students part 1 and part 2.
  8. Alex Absalom on Ideas for Missional Community meetings.
  9. When your preacher is not John Piper.

Have a Higher Expectation for a Man

Last night, Katie and I went out for our weekly date night for dinner and a movie. Before doing that though, we went shopping at Katie’s favorite story H & M. There was a younger couple (feels old saying that), but they were probably 19 or 20. She was walking around looking at clothes while he walked with her, talking to her from time to time and all the while he was listening to his iPod. Literally, he had his headphones on and periodically he would take them out.

I was struck by a few things. One, the low expectation she had for herself and the kind of man she should be with. And two, her low expectations of him and the man she was willing to be with.

At Revolution, one of the hills we have chosen to die on is calling me to be men. You can listen to some of the sermons I’ve preached on this here and here. For me, this is one of my soap boxes, her self image and expectation.

The expectation our culture has for men and our churches is incredibly low. It rests somewhere above our expectation for a household pet. Here is what I mean: I will hear women all the time refer to their husbands as one of their children and then they turn around and wonder why he acts like one. Or, wives will lead their families spiritually, emotionally, relationally, keep their families on track and balanced in terms of their calendars and then wonder why their husbands don’t lead (I’ll blog on this in a few days).

Here is one thing I’ve learned about men, whatever your expectation for them is, typically, they will reach it. No matter how high or how low. They will not shoot too low or too high, many men don’t like that risk. They will hit what you expect. If you call your husband one of your kids, he will act that way. If your expectation is for your husband to not pursue, not pay attention to you, he will.

Is it as simple as changing your expectations? No. If it were, then a whole host of “experts” would be out of a job. But our expectations feed our lives. Think about Monday’s. It is just another day, but most Americans dread Monday because they are going back to work, didn’t get enough done on the weekend, etc. Most people don’t have a great Monday, but they love Friday. Our expectations often feed our lives.

In churches, our expectations for men are so low they don’t come. And then we wonder why they don’t want to be involved in churches. We haven’t given them a reason to die. You read that right. Buried within each man is a desire to find something to give his life to. Carting a wife and kids back and forth is not enough. Ushering is not enough. He needs a mission that will cost him. In most churches, a man who reads his Bible stands out. A man on mission for Jesus is immediately told he should be a pastor. Why? It is so extraordinary, we don’t want to lose him.

Again, our expectations feed our lives. If we only expect men to show up because they drove their family to church, that is all they will do. If we expect men to serve, be on mission and die for something bigger than themselves, they will step up.

Have a higher expectation for a man.