Christian men need to stand up and be leaders

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, May 27, 2008

By Kevin Chiri

I appreciated the invitation last week by New Wine Fellowship Pastor Neil Bernard, asking me if I wanted to stop by one evening for a special men’s service his church would be hosting, led by Dr. La Fayette Scales from Columbus, Ohio.

Bernard has always had a heart for Christian men, and particularly young boys and teens. He and I have discussed this topic on a number of occasions, and the one thing we both agree on is that far too many men in America have given up their position as the spiritual leaders of their homes.

Get mad at me all you want, but I stand by that statement.

Of course I don’t mean all men. But looking at the world I live in, I believe a large percentage of fathers and husbands have given up the position God put them in, to be the spiritual leaders of their homes and their communities.

If you doubt me at all, just look at the statistics so readily available, showing the high degree of alcohol and drug abuse among our young people, the increase in teen pregnancy, the rampant problems coming from too much Internet use, and more.

I don’t have to belabor the point.

If you believe the Bible, which I do, then you have to understand that God set up families for the man to be the spiritual leader of the home. But unfortunately, our world has become so corrupt by so much temptation that I believe the majority of men are no longer trying to stand up and be real Christian men for their wives, and for their children.

The special service the other night at New Wine was one of those small steps in fighting the battle. Over 100 young and older men turned out to listen to Dr. Scales, who delivered an effective message of true Christian men standing up for what is right, and most importantly, setting the example by doing it themselves.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not sitting here from my high and mighty seat as publisher of L’Observateur and trying to put myself anywhere higher than I should be.

I’m a man like the rest of you, and I assure you that I make my mistakes every day. In many ways, I have fallen short of the mark I know I should be trying to achieve as a Christian father and husband.

But the good news is that God knows we will swing and miss plenty of times during our lives. After all, didn’t he make us? He knows exactly what kind of players he has on the team here, and he knows that we will make our share of mistakes.

But the thing He is looking for is a sincere heart that gets up every day and, first by asking for God’s help, goes through the day trying to do what is right, living a life of integrity, and backing up what he says by what he does.

In the business world, I believe that means being truthful in your business dealings, speaking without using foul language, not allowing alcohol to take control of your life, and being fair to all you have any business affairs with.

 Personally, I see my life with one central goal, whether it is at home, or in the business world, or with those I call family or friends. I think God most wants me to approach all these areas trying to serve others.

One of my favorite Scriptures in the Bible is in Matthew Chapter 22 where the disciples ask Jesus what the greatest commandment is. His answer, at first, is to love the Lord with all your heart and soul. But he quickly follows it up by telling them that “And the second (greatest commandment) is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.

We all know that we don’t love anything more than ourselves, so if Jesus tells us to love thy neighbor as thyself, you get the drift. He is saying that loving, or serving our neighbor, is just as important as loving Him!

That’s pretty strong stuff to me, and I have always seen that Scripture, and others that back it up in the Bible, as telling me that serving others is really what should guide my life. It doesn’t mean I won’t be easily criticized by some folks who are just sure they have seen me do things that hardly come across that way. But again, I don’t claim to be perfect, nor am I anywhere close to it. The thing I know, however, is that in my heart, my life is about trying to serve others.

When we have that kind of attitude in life, it makes it easy to want to be the best Christian man in our home, doesn’t it? What could be more important than setting that kind of example to our kids, always showing them that others come first?

The little secret behind all this is that God always has the ultimate payback. When we follow that kind of lifestyle, He is the one who makes sure to even the score. You don’t have to worry about “getting your share,” or making sure that you aren’t left out when the blessings are passed out. God always blesses when he sees it is warranted, and I know in my life I could not ask for more blessing than the beautiful, Godly wife I have at home every day when I finish work, or the four wonderful children I have, who all have a heart to do what is right before God.

My wife and I made our share of mistakes, as all parents will do. But God looks at the heart, and looks for parents who are sincere each day about setting the best example they can for their children. When He sees that, he will fill in the blanks where we miss the mark.

I pray that more men, in particular, will grasp the absolute importance of these principles, and make a new start today, to be the best example they can for their children, and for their community.

Kevin Chiri is Publisher of L’Observateur and can be reached at (985) 652-9545 or at