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The following new individuals and organizations have joined NCMM in May:

The Log Church

Men’s Leadership Ministries, Inc.

Ministry Advantage, Inc.

Damascus Community Church

We welcome these ministries and for-profit organizations who along with the other members of NCMM are together, building men.

The following new individuals and organizations have joined NCMM in April:

Family Life

Man Up Gods Way

Pregnancy Resource Center

Strong Man Ministries

Gator Golf

We welcome these ministries and for-profit organizations who along with the other members of NCMM are together, building men.

Act of Valor, starring a group of “active duty” Navy SEALs,  is unlike any movie ever made in using live munitions and depicting authentic combat missions. It was the nation’s #1 movie when it was released the end of February. It has won critical reviews and grossed $70 million at the box office. On June 5 it will be released on DVD and Blu-ray. It is a must-see flick. Rent it, buy it, show it! Below is the Code of the U.S. Navy Seals, which I believe it is an outward resonance of a warrior code God has hard-wired into every man’s soul.

  • Loyalty to Country, Team and Teammate
  • Serve with Honor and Integrity On and Off the Battlefield
  • Ready to Lead, Ready to Follow, Never Quit
  • Take responsibility for your actions and the actions of your teammates
  • Excel as Warriors through Discipline and Innovation
  • Train for War, Fight to Win, Defeat our Nation’s Enemies
  • Earn your Trident everyday
  • In times of war or uncertainty there is a special breed of warrior ready to answer our Nation’s call. A common man with uncommon desire to succeed.
  • Forged by adversity, he stands alongside America’s finest special operations forces to serve his country, the American people, and protect their way of life.
  • I am that man.
  • My Trident is a symbol of honor and heritage. Bestowed upon me by the heroes that have gone before, it embodies the trust of those I have sworn to protect. By wearing the Trident I accept the responsibility of my chosen profession and way of life. It is a privilege that I must earn every day.
  • My loyalty to Country and Team is beyond reproach. I humbly serve as a guardian to my fellow Americans always ready to defend those who are unable to defend themselves. I do not advertise the nature of my work, nor seek recognition for my actions. I voluntarily accept the inherent hazards of my profession, placing the welfare and security of others before my own.
  • I serve with honor on and off the battlefield. The ability to control my emotions and my actions, regardless of circumstance, sets me apart from other men.
  • Uncompromising integrity is my standard. My character and honor are steadfast. My word is my bond.
  • We expect to lead and be led. In the absence of orders I will take charge, lead my teammates and accomplish the mission. I lead by example in all situations.
  • I will never quit. I persevere and thrive on adversity. My Nation expects me to be physically harder and mentally stronger than my enemies. If knocked down, I will get back up, every time. I will draw on every remaining ounce of strength to protect my teammates and to accomplish our mission. I am never out of the fight.
  • We demand discipline. We expect innovation. The lives of my teammates and the success of our mission depend on me – my technical skill, tactical proficiency, and attention to detail. My training is never complete.
  • We train for war and fight to win. I stand ready to bring the full spectrum of combat power to bear in order to achieve my mission and the goals established by my country. The execution of my duties will be swift and violent when required yet guided by the very principles that I serve to defend.
  • Brave men have fought and died building the proud tradition and feared reputation that I am bound to uphold. In the worst of conditions, the legacy of my teammates steadies my resolve and silently guides my every deed. I will not fail.

Check out the Act of Valor trailer HERE  Again, mark your calendar for the June 5 DVD and Blu-ray release.

© 2012, Dave Brown. Dave Brown is a pastor and the director of the Washington Area Coalition of Men’s Ministries and has been the men’s pastor at McLean Bible Church in McLean, Va. He served for 30 years in the federal government’s Senior Executive Service (SES), including eight years as an appointee of President Ronald Reagan. He did his seminary work at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. He’s been a leadership consultant, university administrator and member of the board of directors for the C.S. Lewis Institute.

The following new individuals and organizations have joined NCMM in 4th Quarter 2011:

Arther DeArmond 

Brad Stine

College Golf Fellowship 

Eagle Crest Ministry

J. Hoy Agency

Jon Sheptock Ministries 

Peregrine Ministries

Regester Chapel Church

Men of Iron: One Year to Live

ReUp…Men Living By His Life

Beacon Light Men’s Ministries

Grace Fellowship

IPHC Royal Rangers

Men of Light

Music for the Soul

Tim Wright Ministries

Back Country Men’s Ministry

The following new individuals and organizations have joined NCMM in 1st Quarter 2012:

Promise Keepers 

Men of Honor

T.H.I.S. is MENistry

First Baptist Church Snyder 

Born to be a Warrior

Faithful Men Ministries

Christian Church Clarendon Hills

Radical Mentoring 

Ministry Insights 

First Baptist Church, Jensen Beach

Men of AIM 

Lance Tullis

The Protectors

New Man Ministries

Arizona Coalition of Men’s Ministries

Men of Valor International 

Total Life Impact Ministries 

Acts2Day Ministries

Upper SC Conference

We welcome these ministries and for-profit organizations who along with the other members of NCMM are together, building men.

We live in a messed up world of performance, “man-up” exhaustion, and men who can’t seem to “get it right”.

Jesus talked much about being servants and what it means to lay down our life, to give ourselves to each other in the presence of his Father and the other kids of the Kingdom for the sheer joy of it. His promise is that Jesus, His Father, and the Wonder Working Holy Spirit will make us alive. I’m in! 100% in!

But what I’m not good with is how much of what Jesus said gets turned into another life-draining formula or performance. I want to hear “well done, good and faithful servant” as much as the next brother, but I’m not good with being an empty shell of a guy to get there. I guess I’m tired of being manipulated.

After Jesus taught his disciples about being servants and just before he gave them the most magnificent personal example of it, he said: “No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you.” (Jn 15:15-17 ESV).

So why is the primary matrix by which most Christians understand our relationship with God – Father, Jesus and the Holy Spirit – that of Servant? Could it be, in our brokenness, it is easier to accept an identity as servant prodigals returning from the swill and the sty than it is to accept ourselves as sons of our Father? Could it be, like the prodigal, we do not believe our Father is really good, so good he will receive us again into the celebration of His life, His love, and His unending affection for us?

The challenge for men who follow Jesus Christ in the 21st century is NOT how to be better servants or more efficient and effective result-producing Christians. It is, in fact, whether we will let Jesus and His Father with the lovely Spirit of God who still breathes on the face of the deep make creation new – whether we will let THAT God make friends of us because he actually enjoys our presence as sons.

A son, a friend of Jesus, who because his identity is secure can lay down his life in service to the world, his family, the church and his brothers! Of that man we will say, “Oh how he loved us!”

by Wes Yoder, author of Bond of Brothers – Connecting with Other Men beyond Work, Weather and Sports.

“When hard pressed, I cried to the LORD; he brought me into a spacious place.” Psalm 118:5

Men’s ministry expert Dan Schaeffer says, “Women equate closeness with safety. Men equate personal space with safety.”You see this whenever men gather in an auditorium. They spread out like marbles dropped on a kitchen floor. But women sit in tight little knots, with hardly an open seat between them.

In the church, we often force men to become physically close and touch each other. Many of these rituals are uncomfortable, unbiblical and frankly, unnecessary. But we do them anyway, because that’s what Christians are used to.

Here are four areas where we could give men more space:

Handholding. Years ago, I attended a church where everyone held hands across the aisles while singing a unity hymn. This earnest attempt to model Christian oneness can be uncomfortable for men—especially when they have to hold hands with other guys. It’s a serious manhood violation.

Hugging. One man wrote columnist Judith Martin (Miss Manners) to say he’d stopped attending a church “where everybody seems to have developed a hugging addiction. Before the greeting period, the minister or lay leader stands on the platform and virtually orders everybody to get some hugs. People I hardly know run up to me and say ‘How about a hug?’” He goes on to ask, “Since when isn’t it possible to be friendly without getting so personal?”

I’m not saying churches should outlaw hugging. If two Christians want to enfold, that’s their business. Hugs are absolutely appropriate among close friends or in counseling situations. But it’s tough on men when they’re expected to hug other fellows they do not know. Where else in our society do male strangers lock up in an embrace?

Put yourself in the shoes of a male visitor who finally works up enough courage to come to church. He’s already nervous. Then the pastor orders everyone to hug. Instantly some big, sweaty guy starts hugging on him. The visitor knows little about the church except what he’s read in the media – and much of that involves gay sex scandals. Now he’s cornered by a pack of men who want to wrap their arms around him. What is he supposed to think?

Prayer mushrooms. When we gather around a man and lay hands on him for prayer, we may unknowingly violate his need for space. I call these impromptu gatherings prayer mushrooms. You know what I’m talking about: Brother Vince happens to mention that his back is sore, and before he knows what hit him, a crowd has sprouted around him, heads bowed, eyes closed. Not only has Vince got relative strangers inches from his nose and unfamiliar hands all over his body, but he must remain frozen for ten minutes or more while everyone has a say.

Other men see what happened to Brother Vince, so they keep their prayer needs to themselves, scared to death they might end up underneath a prayer mushroom. But most women love prayer mushrooms because closeness is comforting.

Some men’s groups have created a brilliant alternative to the prayer mushroom. I call it the prayer force. Brother Vince sits or stands while the others stand in front of him in a loose semicircle. As the Spirit prompts, people step forward to lay their hands on Brother Vince one at a time. Others who want to lift up brief prayers simply pray from where they stand.

Men’s meetings. Incredibly, men’s ministry meetings are often the worst offenders. We hug men when they arrive. Then we place them in tight circles, asking them to read aloud, share, and then top it off by holding hands and praying for 10 minutes. Finally everybody gets a hug, and it’s time for cookies. No wonder fewer than 10% of US churches can maintain a men’s ministry – it’s actually women’s ministry for men.

At this point you may be thinking, “Guys just need to get over their personal space issues. They need to break down those walls and trust the other men.” I agree, this would be preferable. But unfortunately we must minister to men as they are, not as we want them to be. If we want to see more men in church we must heed the words of the Psalmist, and “bring men into a spacious place.”

by David Murrow founder Church for Men. David is not a pastor, professor or theologian. He’s just a guy in the pews who noticed a disturbing trend: churches are losing their men and boys. So he wrote a book titled “Why Men Hate Going to Church”, which became an instant Christian bestseller, with more than 100,000 copies in print. His efforts have spawned articles in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and the Chicago Tribune, to name a few. You may have seen him on PBS, the NBC Nightly News, or the Fox News Channel talking about the gender gap. http://churchformen.com

Many sportscasters and analysts  just don’t know what to make of Tim Tebow, and many NFL fans as well.

He’s been ridiculed for not being a “true” NFL quarterback but he  seems to win in remarkable ways and has turned his team around. He’s also been slammed for wearing his “religion” on his sleeve. His sidelines one-knee prayers have been mockingly mimicked by other players.

When Bronco coach John Fox asked him to give his team a locker room pep talk, Tebow quoted Proverbs 27:17, “As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another”. The media dubbed it the “Ironman Sermon” and some said it was proselytizing. But Bronco linebacker Von Miller responded to the critics with, “He said iron sharpens iron and men sharpen other men. And I think that’s totally true. He gave us a great speech. We came out (for the game) fired up. And that was a wrap.”

Former NFL quarterback MVP and fellow Christian Kurt Warner, who often carried his bible to press conferences, recently counseled Tebow to tone down his God talk, saying, “There’s almost a faith cliche, where (athletes) come out and say, ‘I want to thank my Lord and savior. As soon as you say that, the guard goes up, the walls go up, and I came to realize you have to be more strategic. The greatest impact you can have on people is never (emphasis added) what you say, but how you live. When you speak and represent the person of Jesus Christ in all actions of your life, people are drawn to that. You set the standard with your actions. The words can come after.”

Former Denver Broncos quarterback Jake Plummer also shared his thoughts about Tebow on a recent Phoenix radio station interview. He said while he appreciates what Tebow is doing to revive the Broncos he wants Tebow to shut up about Jesus. Plummer explained, “Tebow, regardless of whether I wish he’d just shut up after a game and go hug his teammates, I think he’s a winner and I respect that about him. I think that when he accepts the fact that we know that he loves Jesus Christ then I think I’ll like him a little better. I don’t hate him because of that, I just would rather not have to hear that every single time he takes a good snap or makes a good handoff.”

When asked his reaction to Plummer’s advice, Tebow told ESPN:

“If you’re married, and you have a wife, and you really love your wife, is it good enough to only say to your wife ‘I love her’ the day you get married? Or should you tell her every single day when you wake up and every opportunity?

“And that’s how I feel about my relationship with Jesus Christ is that it is the most important thing in my life. So any time I get an opportunity to tell him that I love him or given an opportunity to shout him out on national TV, I’m gonna take that opportunity. And so I look at it as a relationship that I have with him that I want to give him the honor and glory anytime I have the opportunity. And then right after I give him the honor and glory, I always try to give my teammates the honor and glory.”

“And that’s how it works because Christ comes first in my life, and then my family, and then my teammates. I respect Jake’s opinion, and I really appreciate his compliment of calling me a winner. But I feel like anytime I get the opportunity to give the Lord some praise, he is due for it.”

What makes Tebow say this? Why won’t he take Plummer’s advice (and even Warner’s) and dial it down about Jesus Christ? Well, it seems Tebow actually believes what Bible says about the preeminence of a Christian’s first love…

“And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him…Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men…” Colossians 3:17, 23

“Nevertheless I have this against you, that you have left your first love.” Revelation 2:4

A problem with Warner’s advice is that the gospel is a message to be proclaimed, not a lifestyle to be lived (Matt. 28:18-20; 1 Cor. 15:1-4). We can’t live the gospel because the gospel is the joyous announcement of good news – i. e.  in the midst of our hopeless, helpless condition, God sent his Son Jesus Christ to rescue sinners like you and me from hell and deliver us into heaven. The Gospel isn’t about us and what we should be doing. It’s about God and what he has already done in our behalf.

The Pharisees were the most moral people of their day. Their behavior was quite attractive and got people’s attention yet Jesus  reserved his harshest criticism for them calling them hypocrites (Matt. 23:13).  The problem with primarily “living the Christian life” is no one knows why you live that way unless you tell them the Good news! The context of Christian behavior is the  gospel and giving “the reason for the hope that you have”. Ultimately morality is not what separates believers from non-believers, Jesus Christ and his gospel are.

Tim Tebow knows Christ is the source of his life and his giftedness (as He is for every athlete and every human being). For any believer to deny, hide or fudge this reality is unbelief.  Christ is Lord of all, or He is not the Lord at all.

What say you?

Dave Brown is the Director and Pastor-at-Large of the Washington Area Coalition of Men’s Ministries (WACMM) founded in 1999 to serve, support and encourage pastors and churches in the mid-Atlantic region.

 

Recently, David Delk announced his decision to step down as the President of NCMM. I’ve had the wonderful opportunity to serve with David and the other members of the NCMM board for the past several years and I can’t tell you how humbled and honored I am by the trust they’ve put in me to take up where David left off.

For those that don’t know me, I’m a pretty unlikely candidate to take David’s place. I don’t run a large national ministry and I’m not ordained in a church. I am, however, extremely passionate about discipleship and the state of men in America. Perhaps my association with the Navigators in college with Geoff Gorsuch as my mentor had something to do with it.

I’m a bi-vocational leader—a man in the marketplace and in ministry. In my “day job,” I lead a management consulting firm that helps technology companies develop their business growth strategies. In my other day job(!), as Founder of BoldPath Life Strategies, I help men to find their mission, fight their battle, and fuel their passion for Christ. In both roles, I describe myself as a Mission Activator. Which brings me back to NCMM.

If you were with us in Nashville this last month for our Reload’11 leaders conference, you already know the excitement that is brewing amongst the leaders of the men’s discipleship across America. The NCMM is fertile ground for a Mission Activator. Perhaps never before has the need been so great and willing hearts among leaders so strong as it is now to pour into the lives of men. Movies like Courageous and Seven Days in Utopia are raising awareness to the challenges men face and their need for Christ and more resources targeting men are becoming available every day. Along with Darrel Billups and the rest of the Board of Directors, I am eager to see what God does through the NCMM in the days and months ahead.

As NCMM, we are, together, building men. I’m thankful for your interest and involvement in this endeavor and look forward to energetically serving with you. Please feel free to reach out to me at the email address provided below. I’d love an opportunity to engage with you personally in the the great cause of Christ. May God bless you richly.

Together, building men,

Leary Gates
leary@ncmm.org

The late Steve Jobs was the iconic co-founder of Apple and one of the great CEO’s of his generation. He revolutionized the world of technology with the Macintosh, iPod, iPhone, iPad, iTunes store and the billion-dollar Pixar conglomerate that produced box-office smashes such as Toy Story, Monsters Inc. and Finding Nemo. Little noted and discussed, however, is how Jobs, a self identified Zen Buddhist, also helped to spread of the Gospel.

Greg Laurie, Harvest Christian Fellowship pastor recently observed, “Steve Jobs helped pave the way for more people to hear the Gospel. Even as the Romans built a road system and established a common language in all their territories that was used by the Apostles to bring the Gospel to their generation, Jobs did something similar for our generation.”

In the months before his death, Jobs began more earnestly contemplating God and the meaning of life. His bestselling biographer Walter Isaacson says Jobs told him in one of his forty-some interviews,

“Sometimes I believe in God, sometimes I don’t. I think it’s 50-50 maybe. But ever since I’ve had cancer, I’ve been thinking about it more. And I find myself believing a bit more. I kind of—maybe it’s because I want to believe in an afterlife. That when you die, it doesn’t just all disappear. The wisdom you’ve accumulated. Somehow it lives on…but sometimes I think it’s just like an on-off switch. Click and you’re gone and that’s why I don’t like putting on-off switches on Apple devices.’”

Jobs was baptized a Christian and confirmed in the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod. He gave up Christianity at age 13 after he saw starving children on the cover of Life magazine and his Sunday school pastor couldn’t answer his question whether God knew what would happen to them. Jobs never went back to church and began to pursue Eastern religions even traveling to India in the 1970’s. He once said, “Different religions are different doors to the same house. Sometimes I think the house exists, and sometimes I don’t. It’s the great mystery.”

Dr. Al Mohler, President of the Southern Baptist Theology Seminar, writes, “Christians considering the life and death of Steve Jobs will do well to remember once again the power of an individual life.” READ MORE about Mohler’s view that Christians can learn a thing or two from his life.

In 2005, Steve Jobs gave the graduation speech at Stanford University discussing “how to live life before you die.” His simple yet challenging message are a window into his soul and his struggle of unbelief in the God of the Bible. CLICK HERE

Check out the classic 1984 commercial introducing the MacIntosh computer

© 2011, Dave Brown is a pastor and the director of the Washington Area Coalition of Men’s Ministries (WACMM). He has been the men’s pastor at McLean Bible Church in McLean, VA and served for 30 years in the federal government’s Senior Executive Service (SES), including eight years as an appointee of President Ronald Reagan. He did his seminary work at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School and Reformed Theological Seminary. He’s been a leadership consultant, university administrator and member of the board of directors for the C.S. Lewis Institute.

Wow! What a wonderful Reload’11 event. It was a joy and encouragement to be in Nashville with more than 100 leaders who are passionate about reaching and discipling men. I’m always amazed to see all that God is doing through the leaders who are members of NCMM.

When I became president of NCMM in June 2008, we were going through a time of transition. As a largely volunteer organization, it’s sometimes difficult to keep the momentum going. We knew that we needed an Executive Director who could continue leading the movement forward. By June of 2010 God had led us to Darrel Billups. Since then, we have grown to 100+ members, more than at any time in our fifteen year history.

With the organization on sound footing, I’ve made the difficult decision to step down as President. I have a lot of mixed emotions, but I’m thrilled to let you know that Leary Gates has been elected to take over. And I’m not going anywhere – I’m staying on the Board of Directors and will serve as Secretary/Treasurer.

The best days for NCMM and the movement are still ahead – nothing has the power to change the world like reaching men!

Together, building men,

David

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