Food for Thought

WE NEED THE MEN!

I think it’s great that during June, Father’s Day causes us to focus on the men.  

It’s apparent that during the past few decades, so much focus has been on acknowledging and empowering women, we seem to have forgotten the important role men play in society. We need to shine a spotlight on the men – if only for the month of June. 

Anyone observing social media will note there has been a rise in a phenomenon called the ‘manosphere’, where variouswebsites, blogs and online forums promote masculinity, misogyny and opposition to feminism.

This manosphere, exemplified by men like Andrew Tate and the late Kevin Samuels, fiercely and passionately promote masculine qualities — sometimes to the detriment and humiliation of women.

I believe the rise in the manosphere is a male reaction to a world that has become so female-orientated, which they believe fails to acknowledge the role of men, their contribution and what they bring to the table.   

There’s no doubt we need to be concerned about how men feel — especially Black men. Male suicide is on the increase, and men are often missing from our families, our homes and our churches. Furthermore, when taking into account the racism Black men encounter in education and the workplace, the mental health issues they face, plus the propensity for them to be stopped and searched by police more than their White counterparts — and be imprisoned — we definitely need to be concerned. 

Christians, who recognise God has called men to be leaders in their homes, their communities and the wider world, must view it as tragic when, for a variety of reasons, they are not living up to their God-given potential. The fact that some men don’t find being a Christian attractive —- and their corresponding absence from church — must be a cause for concern, especially as Christianity was founded by Jesus Christ and 12 male disciples.

The lack of Black men in church has always been a problem. There is a multiplicity of reasons given, including the perception that Christianity is “a White man’s religion”; the feeling that church is more focused on meeting female needs; the strict lifestyle; and the failure of men to see where they belong.  

I believe Black men will attend church in their droves when they experience visionary leadership; learn about the African presence in the Bible; believe that churches are interested in helping them overcome the mental and societal barriers they face; and understand that becoming a Christian aligns them with their purpose. Amen.

SAVING SEX FOR MARRIAGE WORKS

There are some very positive conversations about Black relationships taking place on social media, which is great because they’ll help men and women understand each other and relate to each other better.

I recently watched a clip on TikTok by @hardlyinitiatedpod, where three men were discussing relationships and one man shared that the reason he married his girlfriend was because she had saved sex for marriage.  

I heard another YouTuber, Fumi Desalu-Vold, state that when she met the man who is now her husband, her father had told her not to sleep with him. The advice worked.

It’s good to hear people publicly state that it is possible to abstain from sex whilst courting and end up with the ring. Why? Because so many single Christian women feel pressurised by their fellow believing brothers to have sex. I recently read a thread about dating horror stories on twitter account Blagape, which puts on events for Christians. The women who posted in the thread stated how their Christian dates expected sex in the relationships!!!

Something must be going wrong with church teaching on sex if Christian men think it’s appropriate behaviour to expect physical intimacy in a relationship before marriage.

Anyway… going back to the podcast, it’s good to hear a non-Christian man concur with church teaching about sex and marriage. It’s a reminder that men are prepared to wait to have sex after marriage if they respect the woman they are dating and desire to marry her. It should be noted, too, that any Christian man who pressures you to have sex whilst dating you does not see you as the woman he’ll marry.

I hope this encourages Christian women who are saving sexual intimacy for Mr Right. He’s out there.

LET NO MAN TAKE YOUR CROWN

When you spend a lot of time in church, you’ll find that certain sermon titles get embedded in your psyche. ‘Let No Man Take Your Crown’ — a message preached many years ago by my first-ever pastor, Rev Io Smith — is one of them.

The gist of the message was that, as we walk the walk of faith, we shouldn’t let anyone or anything take us off the Christian path, which would stop us from receiving our heavenly reward for serving the Lord. We also need to adopt this approach when fulfilling our purpose.  Sadly, I meet too many people who allowed discouragement from others to put them off achieving their goals.  

Life is full of challenges and bad-minded people who want to prevent you from doing God’s work. Whenever this happens — and it will — just remember the words: ‘Let No Man Take Your Crown’, take them to heart and keep on keeping on.

Written by: Marcia Dixon

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *