Welcome to the Men’s ministry page. The spiritual vitality of men has a direct impact on the spiritual health of the Church. When men are growing in their knowledge of God and the power of his grace, there is a great benefit to the Church and the broader culture. Marriages grow stronger, families are blessed, businesses and ministries make a positive impact on the community.
For some, the phrase “men’s ministry” triggers images of breakfasts with cold eggs and pancakes, along with uninspired times of “prayer.” Our desire is for men to reach out to other men at their point of need and lead them to a deeper understanding of who they are in Christ. This section of the website is designed to give you a picture of events and resources to help you minister to men in the local church.
- Scotty Smith’s (Heavenward) Devotionals: Men often feel too dirty for God to like very much. Scotty Smith, the founding pastor of Christ Community Church in Franklin, TN, helps men take the concept of God’s unconditional love and unmerited grace from their heads to their hearts.
- Man In the Mirror DVD’s and Webcasts by Pat Morley: Man In the Mirror has a variety of DVD’s and Webcast options that touch on nearly every topic of interest to men.
- Men of the Covenant Audio: These streaming audio recordings are taken from the Wednesday morning teaching provided to Briarwood’s Men of the Covenant group. Biblical teaching on various men’s issues is provided by Briarwood’s staff or other qualified teachers.
- Effective Men’s Ministry Tutorials: Dr. Gary Yagel draws upon 8 years of experience helping PCA churches build effective men’s ministries and his work as a presenter of Man in the Mirror’s No Man Left Behind 20-hour training to provide ten, 6-12 minute, video tutorials (free on Vimeo), which explain various aspects of effective men’s ministry.
- Samson Society Groups: The Samson Society defines itself as a fellowship of Christian men who are serious about authenticity, community, humility & recovery – serious, not grave. A weekly Samson Society meeting follows an agenda that is similar to that of a 12-Step, or Celebrate Recovery group, but the brotherhood connection is far deeper, going beyond the meeting. Samson Society support groups, though originally founded for men with sexual addictions, are for all men, and can be found in many cities and started in the local church.
- Harvest USA Support Groups: Harvest USA has offices that sponsor support groups in Philadelphia: 215-482-0111, email@example.com; Pittsburgh: 412-561-7700, firstname.lastname@example.org; Chattanooga, TN: 423-482-0434, email@example.com. They are also a valuable resource to assist you to start a support group.
BOOKS & SMALL GROUP STUDIES
- Hide or Seek: When Men Get Real With God About Sex by John Freeman (President of Harvest USA)
Men who struggle with sexual sin know how easy it is to live a lie. This book (which is also a ten-week study) helps men step out of the shadows and into the truth—starting with the truth that God loves them. Abiding in his love is the only way to draw near to the only one powerful enough to change us.
- False Intimacy by Harry Schaumburg
With frank honesty, set in a Christian context, False Intimacy examines the roots behind destructive sexual behaviors and offers realistic direction to those whose lives or ministries have been impacted by sexual addiction.
- Sexual Sanity for Men by David White
This study is written by the men’s ministry coordinator for Harvest USA, a ministry begun at Tenth Pres, Philadelphia that brings the truth and mercy of Jesus Christ to the sexually broken. This, in-depth transformative study contains 14 chapters, each with 5 daily readings for journaling. It is designed to be used individually or in a group.
- Grace Transformed Sexuality by Gary Yagel
This nine-week men’s small group study is designed to equip the everyday Christian teen or man with grace centered biblical principles for battling lust BEFORE he slides down the slope of addiction to pornography. The study is a safe place allowing men to find strength in other men battling lust without putting any man on the spot to share the specifics of his struggle.
GRACE-CENTERED MEN’S MINISTRY
- Holiness by Grace by Bryan Chapell
In this challenging yet heart-warming work, Bryan Chapell illustrates the principles of grace, the practices of faith, and the motives of love in living a life of holiness. Free study guide available at www.bryanchapell.com.
- The Prodigal God by Tim Keller
Tim Keller helps you glean insights from each of the characters in Jesus’ parable: the irreligious younger son, the moralistic elder son, and the Father who lavishes his love on both. The Prodigal God challenges the devout and the skeptic alike to see Christianity in a whole new way.
- The Gospel Centered Life by World Harvest Mission
This is a nine-lesson small group study intended to help participants understand how the gospel shapes every aspect of life. Each lesson is self-contained, featuring clear teaching from scripture, and requires no extra work outside of the group setting.
GENERAL MEN’S DISCIPLESHIP RESOURCES
- Man Alive by Pat Morley
Most men know that Jesus promised “a rich and satisfying life” but too many are confused about what that looks like. In this book and DVD series Morley shows men how to channel their seven primal needs into a powerful, transformed life.
- How God Makes Men by Pat Morley
In this book, Morley takes you into Scripture for a first-hand encounter with ten epic stories of the Bible’s most talked-about men, and ten proven principles—based on their failures and successes—that show how God works in a man’s life, and how you can cooperate with Him in yours.
- Men’s Fraternity by Robert Lewis
Men’s Fraternity is a three year DVD series that encourages and teaches men how to live lives of authentic manhood as modeled by Jesus Christ and directed by the Word of God. Men’s Fraternity Classic is the original video series consisting of 3 volumes: The Quest for Authentic Manhood (24 sessions) Winning at Work and Home (16 sessions)The Great Adventure (20 sessions). 33 The Series is their new DVD series curriculum.
- The Masculine Mandate: God’s Calling to Men by Richard Phillips
This book addresses a growing void within the church: the lack of male leadership. Proposing the foundation that it is man’s chief concern to bring glory to God through the means of keeping and guarding, the author effectively and systematically addresses the main elements of a man’s biblical calling.
- The Quest for Biblical Manhood: Year 1 of Men’s Fraternity
The first year of this popular DVD series focuses on masculinity and the wounds that take place to the masculine heart. The more recent production is 33 The Series, focuses on A Man and His Design, A Man and His Story, and A Man and His Traps.
- Stepping Up: A Call to Courageous Manhood by Dennis Rainey
This new book and 10 week DVD series approaches men’s discipleship from the perspective of 5 steps towards being a man: boyhood, an age of discovery, adolescence, an age of pushing and pulling, manhood, an age of stepping up again and again, mentoring, an age of impact, and patriarch, an age of influence.
VERTICAL HEART ALIGNMENT
- Desiring God by John Piper
In this captivating book and 10-session DVD study, Piper reveals how delighting in God can motivate us to glorify him through worship, stewardship, loving our neighbor, suffering, and other “duties.” This book strengthens men’s relationship with God simply by helping them enjoy Him and His creation more.
- Counterfeit Gods by Tim KellerDaily, men hear the voices of false gods like success, status, prestige, power, pleasure, control that claim to be the key to happiness. But the truth is that these good things can’t give us what they promise. This book helps men realize that intimacy with God is the answer to their deepest longings.
- Addictions: A Banquet In the Grave by Ed Welch
Welch’s thesis is this: “The true nature of all addictions is that we have chosen to go outside the boundaries of the kingdom of God and look for blessing in the land of idols. In turning to idols, we are saying that we desire something in creation more than we desire the Creator.” Men need to hear that satisfying our souls in God is foundational to keeping our hearts from being captured by idols.
- The Meaning of Marriage by Tim Keller
Christian men’s surveys reveal that their top request for help is with their marriages. Keller’s clear-eyed understanding of the Bible and meaningful instruction on how to have a successful marriage, make The Meaning of Marriage essential reading for men who want to love their wives well.
- The Marriage Prayer by David Delk and Pat Morley
This book identifies five crucial areas of marriage to focus on together: Faithfulness, Priorities, Purpose, Unity and Attitude by providing case studies, individual and group quizzes, as well as questions for reflection and discussion. It is a great tool for a husband to invite his wife to go through together.
- Intimacy: God’s Design for Marriage by Sandy and Gary Yagel
83% of Christian wives believe their husbands do not understand their need for emotional intimacy and in another study 83% of husbands said their wives do not understand their need physical intimacy. Using the format of three conversational dates, this booklet is designed to help husbands and wives better love each other by discussing and understanding their differences with regards to intimacy.
- Age of Opportunity by Paul Tripp
With compassion, wit and wisdom, Tripp uncovers the heart issues affecting families during the often chaotic adolescent years. Gain assurance of God’s provision for parenting success and discover ways to seize the countless opportunities to deepen communication, learn, and grow with your teens. Also available in DVD format.
- Shepherding a Child’s Heart by Tedd Tripp
Tripp’s book provides a biblical vision for the parenting task and specific objectives for each age group. The centrality of the Gospel and the focus on heart attitude rather than external conformity set this book apart from other parenting resources.
- Raising a Modern Day Knight by Robert Lewis
Beginning with a biblical perspective of manhood, author-pastor Lewis shares a unique approach to shaping a boy into a man by equipping him with three essential elements: a vision, a code of conduct, and a cause–Christianity–in which to invest his life. Also available as a 6 session DVD series.
CALLED TO THE WORKPLACE
- How Then Should We Work? by PCA Ruling Elder Hugh Whelchel
Recovering the Biblical doctrine of work is central to men’s discipleship. Businessman Hugh Whelchel provides a thorough and deeply-satisfying biblical answer to the question he’d asked himself for 25 years, “Does my work matter to God?” His thorough investigation reveals the eternal significance of work within the grand, Biblical story of God’s mission for man throughout history.
- Every Good Endeavor by Tim Keller
With deep insight and often surprising advice, Keller shows readers that biblical wisdom is immensely relevant to our questions about our work. In fact, the Christian view of work that we work to serve others, not ourselves can provide the foundation of a thriving professional and balanced personal life. Keller shows how excellence, integrity, discipline, creativity, and passion in the workplace can help others and even be considered acts of worship not just of self-interest.
- A Man’s Guide to Work by Pat Morley
Half a man’s life is bound up in his work, but few men ever learn a biblical framework, to help think correctly about all those hours, weeks and years they invest in their job. No matter what the color of their collar, men are introduced to principles which provide a better understanding of themselves and how to be most effective and valuable to the Lord in their vocation.
BECOMING A BAND OF BROTHERS
- Samson and the Pirate Monks by Nate Larkin
Larkin spells out his own story of sexual brokenness in Samson with stark honesty. But his story of sexual addiction is really only the surface issue. The underlying story is of isolation in the church culture in which Nate grew up, a culture that is sadly still prevalent in our churches today and is a breeding ground for secret sin. This is a story about men who are helping one another to take off their pious masks and bear their souls. The subtitle really captures the book’s purpose: “Calling Men to Authentic Brotherhood.”
- Forging Bonds of Brotherhood by Gary Yagel
How do you get a man to understand his need to be connected to other brothers in Christ and equip him to build a friendship with a few men for encouragement and accountability? Give him a copy of this booklet. It is short enough for him to read on a Sunday afternoon (60 pages) and practical enough for him to know what steps to take to take to connect with a few brothers. The discussion questions at the end of each of the 9 chapters also make it a great book for a men’s bible study.
- INsourcing: Bringing Discipleship Back to the Local Church by Randy Pope
More than 25 years ago, the leadership team of Perimeter Church, a rapidly growing church founded by Randy Pope, realized that personal life-on-life missional discipleship was accounting for a unique and unmatched depth of spiritual growth and heart for outreach within the individuals involved. This book tells the story of how they learned to bring discipleship back from the margins of church life to the mainstream.
The Men’s Ministries Toolbox contains useful resources for setting up and running a successful men’s ministry. Here you will find tools for helping in the specifics of men’s ministry in your church.
Seminars and Conferences for your Church:
Do you want to host a conference at your church, but need recommendations of good speakers and topics? Below you will find just that. If you have any questions about this list contact Gary Yagel, CDM’s Men’s Ministry Consultant.
Why have men’s (discipleship) ministry?
Because we are failing to disciple men effectively. Studies show that for every 10 men in the average church:
- 9 will have kids who leave the church
- 8 will not find their jobs satisfying
- 6 will pay monthly minimum on credit cards
- 5 have a major problem with pornography
- 4 will get divorced affecting 1,000,000 children each year
- Only 1 will have a biblical worldview
- All 10 will struggle to balance family & work
(Statistics cited by Man In the Mirror)
In the PCA we may be doing a little better than the average church, but the bar is still way too low!
Why is men’s discipleship foundational for the local church?
- God has assigned men a strategic position of influence in the covenant family, church, and community. He has designed our wives to be responders, and our children to have many needs that we must meet as their fathers. If we help men get it right, everybody wins.
- A strong discipleship ministry for men results in spiritually stronger men, which leads to spiritually stronger church leaders, which leads to stronger churches, which glorifies Christ.
- Jesus built his church by discipling men.
What two, primary goals does men’s discipleship seek to accomplish?
- DEEPER CONNECTION IN THE BODY: Helping men build friendships with other men for encouragement and accountability (the body building itself up in love)
- DEEPER OBEDIENCE TO CHRISTS COMMANDS: Providing biblical teaching for men that is specific to their temptations and responsibilities as men (discussing the truth in love)
Speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love. Eph. 4:15-16
How do men’s events like paintball, short term mission trips, seminars, and breakfasts fit into the concept of discipleship?
- It takes time for males to bond. They don’t go from 0 to 60 instantly.
- Men tend to build relationships shoulder to shoulder, so recreational and service opportunities are a means to helping men connect as well as use their gifts.
- Small group discussion at seminars and on retreats also help men connect.
- It is helpful to think of these activities as part of the process of helping men move down the discipleship path towards deeper connection with some brothers.
Why is it so difficult to get men to attend men’s events?
- Brand loyalty is at an all-time low in our culture while working hours and commute time are at an all-time high. Therefore, men don’t show up just because the bulletin says a men’s event is planned.
- Men are less likely than teens, singles, children, and women, to attend an event just to be with their friends. They may know they need connection, but being friends with some guys at church is not very high on most men’s priority list.
- Many men already feel guilty about being away from home so much to do their jobs. So, we have to overcome the guilt and pressure he feels not to be away from the family more.
- The availability of graphic pornography means that more men are enslaved to secret sins than ever before. Fearing that their wives or children might find out, they may participate in something safe like a church softball team or work project, but will avoid events that connect them to other men at the spiritual level.
How can we increase attendance at our men’s events?
- Make the event too valuable for men to miss. Find out what is most valuable to your men. (See the next FAQ question)
- Do fewer events but do them well.
- Get ownership of the event by engaging the men’s ministry team and key influencers in the planning and conducting of the event.
- Don’t plan or expect every event to appeal to every man. Niche plan and market. One group of guys may want to meet at a pub and discuss a book. Another group might have a before-work bible study. Another group may love cycling together. Promote all three groups and challenge them to help their men support each other in their spiritual battles.
- Get your leadership team to personally invite men to events and pick them up.
What do men identify as their greatest spiritual needs?
Surveys Conducted Among Christian Men Reveal Where They Want Spiritual Help:
- With their marriages—the number one request on men’s surveys.
- Battling sexual temptation—the temptation men struggle with most.
- Better managing their time—sticking to the right priorities and being consistent in the spiritual disciplines.
- Being the spiritual leader in their homes—knowing how to meet their wives needs how to disciple their kids.
- Seeing their job as a calling from God and receiving Biblical wisdom for tough, job-related issues.
- Being more faithful in outreach to the lost. Most men feel like spiritual failures because they are doing little to share their faith.
- Finding a brother for friendship, encouragement, and accountability.
- Getting control of their anger and becoming more patient.
- Investing their lives not just for success, but for significance.
- Knowing how to satisfy their hearts more by delighting in God.
The root need of every man is satisfying his soul more in Christ. But as he sees the biblical answers to the above felt needs, the result is that his walk with Christ is energized.
What men’s discipleship programs are working in the PCA
Here are five discipleship programs that over ten PCA churches have used:
- Journey Groups (Basic training. Groups of about 5 by gender, are leader-led, 3 year curriculum from, Randy Pope)
- Men’s Fraternity (weekly DVD’s with table discussion. Begins with wounds to the masculine heart, 3 year curriculum including the topic of “Winning at Home,” Robert Lewis)
- Man In the Mirror (numerous books, DVD’s, seminars, free podcast studies on nearly every men’s issue, Pat Morley)
- The Masculine Mandate (A book used for small group study on the call to biblical manhood) By PCA TE Rick Phillips)
- Forging Bonds of Brotherhood (A 60 page book used for small group study to help a beginning or existing study build trust and move towards sharing spiritual battles more, PCA TE Gary Yagel)
See our tool box section for more ministries, seminars, and tools organized by topic.
How can we help men get spiritually connected as a true band of brothers?
- Be clear about the target—every man connected to a few brothers who are helping him fight his spiritual battles. Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. Eccl. 4:12
- Continually convey this truth to men: God doesn’t want you fighting your spiritual battles alone.
- Communicate this message through: 1) church leaders who model having an accountability partner themselves, 2) giving men who have such brotherhood connections the opportunity to tell their story, 3) directly challenging men—“We want every man in our church connected to some brothers who are praying for his inner battles.”
- By strategically using every men’s event in the church to help deepen their relationships.
- By considering many paradigms for connection—men’s Sunday school classes, men’s bible studies, Jonathan and David connections for breakfast, lunch, or weekly phone call, mentoring relationships, etc.
There are many frequently asked questions in Men’s Ministry and most of the answers are different for each individual church. Here is an attempt to give one general answer to each of these FAQ’s, but please call or e-mail us concerning particular ministry needs and we will make every effort to direct or connect you to the best solution for your local church.