Wednesday, January 20, 2010
What Is Rally Point? Part II
The message of Rally Point is not a new one, but is a forgotten one. It has been buried for centuries by the Age of Enlightenment, along with the Victorian Era where men were taught to compromise their beliefs for the sake of civility and were convinced to put aside his wildness for the sake of Christ. As a result, a man's passion for life was lost. Under the Age of Enlightenment, empirical and scientific evidence became the basis for truth, replacing narrative as a means of understanding. The Laboratory became more important than the storyteller. The results were devastating as men became sweet, nice, and for the most part, bored.
The hope we have, however, is that Jesus came, and He came with a mission in mind. He said, "For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost." (Luke 19:10 NIV) Did you get that? He did not say "seek and save the lost," even though that's how we usually interpret it. Rather he said, "what was lost". The question then becomes, "what exactly was lost?" We're taught in scriptures that mankind was created in the image of God, both male and female. What does that mean? Well, we have the physical differences and we see how that plays into procreation. Then, there are the mental differences where guys and gals think differently. There are definitely the emotional differences. What about when it comes to the soul? Could there be differences between the genders when it comes to the soul and the heart? Why do we understand the male and female image of God to be limited only to the physical, mental, and emotional, but not the spiritual? For some sad reason, we're too quiet when it comes to this, dangerously quiet. That is why you see fewer and fewer men at church, and almost no young men.
I believe God meant something special when he created a man. (He also meant something else special when he created a woman, but we won't discuss that here quite yet.) In order for us to understand this in practical ways, we need to see what men desire from life. A good place for us to start is with the movies men love. Let's take, for instance, Gladiator, Braveheart, Saving Private Ryan, and Lord of the Rings to name a few. Why do men almost universally gravitate to these types of films? Why do women, while they may watch one of these movies, almost universally prefer to watch movies such as Chocolat, Sense and Sensibility, and Shall We Dance? The genders have their preferences because men bear God's image as a man, and women bear God's image as a woman. We're not just talking entertainment, but these movies really stir a longing within us; something wakes up. It's that ache, or longing we need to get in touch with.
Now back to the movies for men. What do these types of movies tend to have in common? The first is battle. We get excited when we see something blown up or when the bad guy gets killed. It's not enough to put him prison, we want him gone. The second similarity is adventure. Men love adventure! Give guys a free weekend and some spending money and what are they going to do? You guessed it, adventure; rock climbing, hunting, hiking, white water rafting or anything that involves risk. Finally, more times than not, there is a beauty involved in the movies we love. A beautiful young woman in need of a rescue where her hero will come, deliver her, and take her to some secret rendezvous. The reason we watch these movies is because we want these things. We want these things because God wants these things. God's a fighter. "The Lord is a warrior, The Lord is His name."(Exodus 15:3 NIV) He loves adventure. "He makes the clouds His chariots and rides on the wings of the wind."(Psalm 104:3 NIV) He loves a beauty. "I belong to my lover, and His desire is for me."(Song of Solomon 7:10 NIV) These are the desires of our hearts because they are the way a man bears the image of God...and these desires are key to understanding the soul of a man.
A Battle. An Adventure. A Beauty. This is our glory as men, and nothing in this world could be more opposed. Our enemy will stop at nothing to inhibit the restoration of God's image here on earth, because he fears it. That makes our mission that much more dangerous.
I welcome your comments on this post as well as others. Next time, you may look forward to hearing in greater detail the mission we've been called to.