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Job 29 Leadership

We often hear of the Proverbs 31 woman. The description found in Proverbs 31:10-31 is held up as a model of an industrious, other-centered, God-fearing woman. No one particular chapter in Proverbs describes the model man, but a passage in the book of Job serves as a distinctively heroic model for manhood. In Job chapter 29 Job says that he…

    • Delivered the poor who cried for help, and the fatherless who had no one to help him.
    • Caused the widow’s heart to sing for joy due to his generosity.
    • Put on righteousness like clothing. His justice “was like a robe and a turban.”
    • Became eyes to the blind and feet to the lame and a father to the needy.
    • Broke the fangs of the unrighteous and made him drop his prey from his teeth.

This is a distinctively heroic model of manhood. Job uses his strength and leadership to serve others as a protector and provider rather than for selfish gain or exploitation.

Every strength, resource or leadership trait you have is from God, but it’s not for your own purposes. God equips you as a man to serve others.

How can you, in the power of the spirit, use your manhood to be a servant leader?

Consider your future wife
Begin praying for your future bride today. Ask God to form the character of Christ in you so that you will become the kind of heroic leader she deserves.

Consider your resources
What resources do you have? A single man on the tightest budget is most likely still in the wealthiest 1% of the world. Even if you don’t have a lot of spare cash, you likely have other resources such as a vehicle, tools, and perhaps extra clothes, food or supplies you could spare.

Consider your strengths
What strengths has God given you? Are you good with technology? Medicine? Accounting? Construction? Teaching? Music? Mentoring teens? Has God at least given you a strong back that you can lend in service?

Consider the needs in your church
What comes to mind as you think of the resources and strengths God has given you in light of the needs in your church? Where are you needed?

Consider the needs in your community
Now think about your community. How can you use the strengths, position, authority and resources God has given you to serve others? How can you be eyes to the blind, feet to the lame, or a father to the needy? How can you break the fangs of the unrighteous and make him drop his prey? 

Going Further: Discover where you can use your strengths to serve others by going to

THE INTENTIONAL SINGLE MAN page.



Company of Men

Who is forming your manhood? What are the dominant male examples in your life teaching you about priorities, sexuality, money, relating to women, and faith?

It’s common for single guys to get a significant amount of their “education” about how they should live as men from their peers and from media such as movies, video games, TV, YouTube, etc.

Stop and assess what you’re learning from your peers and the culture around you. How are they helping you with the priorities we’ve looked at in this series: toward your calling to marriage or celibate service; toward the milestones of manhood; in your watchfulness against your spiritual enemy?

Godly men are formed in the company of other Godly men. This truth calls you to be discerning about your friends and about what you consume from the culture around you. But it also calls you to be intentional about learning from mentors, Godly men who are further down the road than you are.

In his letters to Timothy and Titus, Paul demonstrates the value of younger men learning from older men. Biblical manhood depends on the formative instruction and example of older men who provide mentoring in three specific categories.

Counsel: It’s been said that life is too short to learn everything through trial and error. Christian men who are further along in life can offer wise counsel about common dead-ends and roadblocks if you’re willing to humble yourself and ask for advice.

Modeling: Too many guys have never seen Biblical manhood lived out “in the wild.” Maybe you missed out on having a dad, an uncle, a coach or pastor provide models for you to follow. Christian mentors can help fill that gap in your life.

Accountability: Finally, mentors can shape you by providing an accountability structure. One of the primary ways guys become men is through making and keeping commitments. Older men can hold you accountable to those commitments.

Unfortunately, the demand for mentoring tends to outpace the supply. You need to be intentional about cultivating a mentoring relationship.

Here are steps you can take now to find and engage mentors:

Join a church/small group: The fifty or so “one another” verses in the New Testament (such as love one another, serve one another, and pray for one another) require regular, committed fellowship with other members of the body of Christ. When you gather with others in the context of a small group you will find natural opportunities for discipleship and mentorship.

Observe: “Be imitators of me as I am of Christ,” Paul told the Corinthians. Watch in your church for men who are seeking to imitate Christ. Learn from their instruction and their example.

Ask: After you’ve observed Godly men for a while, seek them out. Ask them if you can meet them for coffee, a meal, a game, a run or some other opportunity to connect and get some advice. Don’t ask for a long-term mentoring commitment, but instead prepare 2 to 3 specific initial questions to ask and see where it goes from there.

Going Further: To learn about pursuing a mentor relationship, go to THE INTENTIONAL SINGLE MAN page.



Be Watchful!

“Be sober-minded; be watchful,” writes the Apostle Peter, “Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour,” (1 Peter 5:8). He is committed to our death and destruction (John 10:10). Whether you recognize it or not, you’re like a gazelle out on the savanna going about your day while a predator observes to discover where you are most vulnerable. His strategy is to notice your weak points in order to deliver timely temptations. James 1:14-15 says, “each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.”

Are you aware of what makes you lion bait?

Do you know your own vulnerabilities as well as your adversary does?

Become sober-minded and watchful by asking yourself five questions:

      • Where am I most susceptible to temptation? Pride? Envy? Gluttony? Sloth? Lust?
      • At what point in the day do I tend to be weakest?
      • What friends most often cause me to stumble?
      • What TV or online habits leave me vulnerable to temptation?
      • What sins do I justify as struggles that I just “need to manage”?

Your defense against areas of vulnerability, however, can’t just be a resolution to do better. In your own strength you will remain lion bait. Your only hope is in the victory Christ has already won. So how should you live knowing you have both an enemy and a redeemer?

Make no provisions for the flesh. “Make no provisions for the flesh, to gratify its desires” (Romans 13:14). In other words, don’t make any accommodation for fleshly desires to grow into sin. Elsewhere, Paul writes to Timothy, “flee youthful passions and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace, along with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart” (2 Timothy 2:22). Put opportunities to sin far away.

Confess your sin. The worst thing you can do if you stumble in your fight against sin is simply resolve to do better while you seek to manage your appearance so that you appear without sin. Your only hope is to confess your sin and look to Christ for forgiveness. “If we confess our sins,” the Apostle John writes, “he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).

See yourself as a gift. Your body (including your sexual desire) is intended to be a gift to your future spouse. Treat it as such so that you will be able to give a pure, undefiled gift to your bride. Honoring your future marriage vows starts now!

Going Further: Your enemy knows that every man struggles with sexual temptation. Go to THE INTENTIONAL SINGLE MAN page to find help including an article titled SEXUAL DETOX by Tim Challies.



Beyond Guyland

In his book Guyland, sociologist and author Michael Kimmel describes the five milestones historically associated with adulthood:

Milestone #1: Leaving home

Milestone #2: Completing one’s education

Milestone #3: Starting work

Milestone #4: Getting married

Milestone #5: Becoming a parent

Which of these milestones have you achieved?

While not every adult ends up completing all of these markers, Kimmel explains that these “represent a pattern, a collection of indicators.” In the 1960s, about 65 percent of men had achieved all five of these milestones by the time they reached 30. By the year 2000, however, less than a third of 30-year-old men had achieved all five.

Kimmel acknowledges new challenges men face in a tight economy, but he believes many men are trapped in Guyland: a place of extended adolescence where boys postpone the responsibilities of manhood. Kimmel describes it as an “undefined time span between adolescence and adulthood that can stretch for a decade or more, and a place … where guys gather to be guys with each other unhassled by the demands of parents, girlfriends, jobs, kids and the other nuisances of adult life.”

Think about the milestones you have yet to reach. Has your attitude toward these milestones been shaped by a view of heroic Christian manhood or by the cultural lure of Guyland?

Leaving home. Are you still dependent on your parents for housing, food, insurance, cell phone service or other resources? If you are able-bodied, then these are all things you are capable of providing for yourself. The longer you look to your parents to subsidize your life, the longer you’ll stay in Guyland and postpone manhood.

Completing your education. Educational expectations have changed over the past 30 years, requiring many guys today to spend more time in the classroom in order to achieve the kind of salary their fathers earned. But guys often make this process unnecessarily longer when they aren’t purposeful about their education. College is not a time to find yourself—but instead to find out what you must know in order to use your strengths to meet marketplace needs. Are you on a trajectory to complete your education?

Starting work. Are you working? If so, are you doing the kind of work that could grow into something that would allow you to support a family? Or could your job instead be described as what Douglas Coupland calls a McJob — “low-paying, low-prestige, low-dignity, no future job”? These are the kinds of jobs guys often get stuck in rather than committing to a career path. He explains that in Guyland many young adults “feel they are just treading water, waiting for the right job, the right person, the right situation, to reveal itself.” How intentional have you been about your career?

Getting married.  Not every man is called to marriage, and that’s absolutely normal.  Just because you don’t get married doesn’t make you less of a man.  This indicator is aimed at those who do desire marriage, but haven’t taken relationships and their part in them very seriously. In 1970 the average age men got married was 22. Today, it’s almost 29. That doesn’t mean folks in Guyland aren’t interested in the companionship and sexual satisfaction. Instead, that they are often looking to get all of these marriage-like benefits out of their relationships without making a marriage commitment. Is that attitude shaping your approach and timeline toward marriage?

Becoming a parent.  As in marriage, not every man is called to become a father. Again, not being a father doesn’t make you less of a man.  Rather, for those who are called to fatherhood, it will require leaving childish things behind. Becoming a dad means stepping up into the role God designed fathers to play as protectors and providers. Guyland, however, encourages its residents to simply protect and provide for themselves—to put off the future demands and sacrifices of parenting so they can cling to the child-free pleasures of Guyland as long as possible. How much has that mindset shaped your attitude toward becoming a dad?

Challenges abound for men in today’s job market, educational environment and the scene for finding a wife—but heroic manhood requires recognizing the destructive temptations of Guyland and intentionally moving your life in a God-honoring direction.

Going Further: Find tools to help you become more intentional about escaping Guyland by visiting THE INTENTIONAL SINGLE MAN page.



Accepting the Heroic Manhood Challenge – BwayHero

Thank you for accepting the challenge to move beyond passivity in your spiritual journey in order to become a more Christ-like man. You are one of those who will help us create a church-wide culture where heroic leadership becomes normal and expected. How? By increasing your own level of manly intentionality over the coming four weeks. If you haven’t already done so, please join the Bway Single Men text group for our weekly Hero Challenge for Single Men! When you do, your name will be entered into a drawing to win a Heroic Gift Package, including a gift card to Home Depot as well as some other handy “tools” for your journey. The winner will be announced at our annual Men’s retreat September 28-29th (must be present to win!). Joining is as simple as texting the message “@BwayHero” to 81010. You’ll receive a confirmation message back and you’ll be ready to go!

Let’s get started!  Heroic Challenge #1: Stop whatever you are doing right now to spend a few moments in prayer using the following prompts…

ASK FOR GRACE: Ask God for the grace needed to adopt the attitude of Jesus Christ who, according to the Bible, “made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant…and being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death – even death on a cross!”

ASK FOR CLARITY: Ask God to show you the present reality. How well have you modeled self-sacrifice for those you love and lead?  Whether at work, school, church, or any other group that you belong to, confess any struggles or weaknesses when it comes to loving and serving others and invite God to give you strength to better reflect the example of Jesus Christ.

ASK FOR SUCCESS: Ask God to give you courage and creativity as you try to serve and lead those within your sphere of influence. Pray that they would be receptive to your efforts, even if you have failed in the past. 

Over the next 4 weeks we will send a new challenge each week to help engage you on your spiritual journey and encourage your growth as a Christ-like man.  We hope they will help you turn the prayer you just prayed into a real-world reality with those you have been called to serve and to lead.

Going Further:
• Visit the TOOLS FOR MEN page to hear the free HEROIC@HOME audio podcast.