Men’s Ministry: It’s OK to Dream Small

Does your current ministry to men feel like a valley of dry bones? Are you looking for ways to breathe new life into your men’s ministry? Are you contemplating your next event or outreach strategy? Maybe it’s time to change things up a little. Go against the flow. Think about efficiency and effectiveness. The answer might be to think smaller in order to grow larger.

Tim Elmore said, “More time with fewer people equals greater kingdom impact.” In other words, intentionally investing more time in fewer men will produce more lasting kingdom impact than large gatherings or events. Don’t misunderstand; there is definitely a place for events and large gatherings in your men’s ministry. Wild Game suppers, Game On Sundays, and men’s revival gatherings are excellent components of a healthy men’s ministry. Although outreach is essential to Great Commission living, disciple-making involves intentional time spent with a few men who then can disciple others who are won through events and ministries. As Paul said, “… and what you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses entrust to faithful men who will be able to reach others also.” 2 Timothy 2:2

Large events and men’s programs take time, energy, and resources. Properly done, they require months of planning, several volunteers, lots of money, and strategic follow up. Even the thought of planning such an event can be exhausting. Furthermore, many single staff pastors and lay people feel as though they don’t have the time, resources, or energy to execute such an event. These leaders are convinced they need to do something but are mired in the mud of “where do I begin.” The result…many men’s ministries are relegated to the sidelines and consist of one or two activities a year and a monthly breakfast. Dry bones – for sure!

New life will come to your men’s ministry if you begin to invest in a few good men! That’s what Jesus did! He intentionally invested in those who would one day lead the church. He spent a majority of his time with twelve guys. He walked with them, talked with them, listened to them, laughed with them, cried with them and taught them well. He poured himself into these men believing they would one day do the same for others. Any size church can do this. You don’t even need staff or volunteers. All you need is a willingness to invest in a few others. Regi Campbell said, “If there is anything, we should be able to learn from Jesus and replicate in our own lives, it’s mentoring. We have a documented model with proven results!”

Campbell asserts most of us are in one of these different camps.

You appreciate mentoring and would like to do it, if only you knew how.

Truthfully, most of us have never been in an intentional relationship with other men designed for spiritual growth, accountability, and multiplication. How can I lead something I haven’t experienced? You’re right. That is extremely difficult and usually ineffective.

You want a mentor but haven’t been able to fine one.

Unfortunately, Jesus’ model of disciple making is extremely rare in today’s church. Many churches never go any deeper than large group co-ed Bible studies. Furthermore, most church meetings take place on campus on Sundays or Wednesdays. Who’s there for you when the weekend is over?

You’ve heard the term but never really given mentoring much thought.

Mentoring is not on most pastor’s radars. Many other tasks dominate calendars and little energy and time is left for personal disciple-making. It’s time to do some pruning in order to focus on what is most important.

You’re a pastor and you’re anxious to improve your church’s system for making disciple makers.

You are moving in the right direction! You know there is an issue and you want more for you men’s ministry. You just need the tools.

Mentoring should not only be a part of your men’s ministry it should be the foundation of your men’s ministry. Mentoring will breathe new life into dry bones. If you are asking where do I begin, consider these options.

  • Contact the Discipleship team about being part of a Learning Community in your region. Proverbs 27:17 tells us that, “iron sharpens iron.” Together we can help each other be more intentional about mentoring and disciple-making.
  • Pray and ask God to reveal to you a few guys in your church that you can intentionally invite into a mentoring relationship. (Philippians 3:17, 4:9, 1 Timothy 4:12) This should not be entered into lightly. Prayer is the foundation for disciple-making. God will lead you to those he has prepared for you to mentor.
  • Consider asking someone to mentor you. This may be hard for pastors or established church leaders, but we must swallow our pride and learn to take others where they must go. You can do this!

Check out these other mentoring resources:

For more information, please contact the Discipleship team of the Georgia Baptist Mission Board and schedule a consultation. You can also join the conversation on Facebook!

Published September 21, 2020