We have a bit of a reputation for being tough on Monday nights. It’s true, we are, but that toughness is kindness. By being tough we’re saving lives, marriages, and relationships. If a man could do it alone, believe me, we all would have, but we need each other. We need God with skin on working through the men around us to give us compassion, acceptance, encouragement, and at times a swift kick in the glutes.
Our pastor Bill and our church has been praying for many years for a cancer free zone. That anyone with cancer in our city would be healed and that is very cool, I like it very much. Monday night is also a cancer free zone. That cancer is unconfessed sin, dishonesty, victim mentality, self hatred, complaining, self pity, passivity, bad theology, and isolation. These things will kill you, they must die, and you have to kill them.
What we as leaders do in our small groups that feels tough is to remove places for the men in our group to hide. Nice firm fatherly nudges toward living/working, doing, and speaking so you can be known. The acceptance we need is huge but it cannot get fully met until you are fully known.
You’re job right now is to get better. Your job for the rest of your life is to stay better. You will do that by knowing what will kill you and running straight at it until you put it to death. You kill it by doing the exact opposite of what is trying to kill you: Full confession of sin, radical and dangerous honesty, complete personal responsibility, love for yourself, being positive, aggressive, making and maintaining friendships, and thinking biblically. These do’s will keep you alive, even better they will bring you alive.
You’re a survivor, a cancer survivor. But more than that, you’re going to live, and live well. A life brought back from the brink of death is sweet, beautiful, it’s value appreciated, every week, every day, every minute has meaning. Once you are there stay in that place, remember what tried to kill you, remember what healed you, and live well.