How to Inspire Men to Pursue Authentic Fellowship
Camaraderie. Loyal friendship. Fellowship…real fellowship.
These are things every man longs for. In fact, we were programmed for this at our creation. Yet most Christian men miss out on this truly phenomenal experience God gave us: authentic fellowship.
Last year, I published my first book Journey to Freedom: The Pursuit of Authentic Fellowship among Men. The guts of this book? …to persuade Christian men to enter into the joy of real, biblical fellowship with one another.
Having interviewed dozens of men (many of them pastors) for this book, two things became clear to me:
1. Most Christian men either do not understand what biblical fellowship is, or we are too afraid to pursue it.
2. There are deadly consequences for not being involved in this authentic fellowship.
Biblical fellowship is authentic, real, and purposeful. It’s what Paul described in his many “one another” passages: bear with one another, love one another, carry one another’s burdens, etc. This kind of fellowship goes much deeper than a casual talk about our golf game, or the job, or the other surface stuff we like to chat about. It involves an intentional entering into the life of another.
It’s more than accountability. It begins with friendship and deepens into iron sharpening iron. It takes work. It’s not easy, but the rewards are out of this world.
And every man desires this. No exception. I’ve talked with several who have told me that they don’t need it, but when we got down to the nuts and bolts of what our real needs are as men, there was no denying the truth. We are created for fellowship.
1 John 1:3-4 says, “We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ. We write this to make [your] joy complete.” (NIV)
In my book I explain what John means by this theme passage of his book. He experienced deep, authentic fellowship with Jesus, and he wants to show us what that looks and feels like. Joy comes from authentic fellowship with one another.
So if you’re a man, chances are you have built some sort of box of protection for yourself. You don’t want anyone else to know the real you. You’ve chosen to fight your own battles alone. You’ve told yourself that you’re the only one who struggles with certain sins, and since you’re the only one, no one else can help you.
It’s time to change. There’s a freedom that Christ died for so you can lavish in. Freedom to love deeply, laugh joyfully, and to experience the peace that comes from purity. Sin restricts. Authentic fellowship paves the road to freedom. Start the journey.