In 1996, Promise Keepers asked the men attending PK conferences to describe their local church experience. Two words came up more than any others. Two words from men who not only attend church, but accepted an invitation to attend a national men's conference! What words would you use to describe your own experience in your own local church?
The two words were 1) boring and 2) irrelevant. Can you say, "Ouch!" How did this happen? How did the typical local church which is pastored by men and has leadership primarily of men end up becoming boring and irrelevant to men? What do men mean when they say the local church is boring and irrelevant? Let's start by looking at those two words: Boring-tiresome, tedious, dull Irrelevant - no bearing to the matter at hand.
Could it be that when these men who attended a huge men's conference in a massive football stadium with 50,000 other men were asked this question that they did not think of the ministry of the church but only of the Sunday morning worship service? A caring Christ-like community that is mission minded and is God's representative on this earth is neither boring or irrelevant. The weekly service at the building where this local church meets might fall into those categories.
We have already stated that Sunday morning is not the prime entry point for men to come into the local church. It is not my intention in this chapter or our intention in this book to take on the redevelopment of the Sunday morning service. What I will encourage is that we need to intentionally develop entry points for men outside of the Sunday morning worship service that are interesting and relevant to men.
What would be interesting and relevant to adult men? Let's start by defining the terms: Interesting - exciting the curiosity and holding the attention Relevant - bearing to the matter at hand, pertinent, timely
The last few years I have had the opportunity to serve as a presenter for Great Dads. Great Dads offers fathering seminars at local churches ail over the country. These four hour seminars equip men to be great fathers and grandfathers. Why have they been so successful? I believe it is because they are interesting and relevant. Men want to be great dads! These seminars bear to the matter at hand in a man's life. They hold a man's attention because they engage him in an area of life that is very, very important to him. These seminars are specific, practical and applications can be put into practice immediately.
When you plan an entry level event for men, you must consider if it will excite the typical man's curiosity as well as being timely and pertinent for the average man at your church. If it is content driven, will the content address an area relevant to the life of an adult man? If it is not content driven, will the event engage men in an area of current interest?
Remember that the #2 goal when putting on an entry level event for men is Relevance.
From NCMM 2004 Coaching Training