It’s important to remember that Jesus didn’t address the Great Commission to the masses. He didn’t say, “Come and be discipled.” Rather, he spoke it to us, his body, the church, and said, “Go and make disciples.”
If the former, we might be justified talking to men about what they “need” as our starting point. But because of the very specific way Jesus constructed his marching orders, and to whom, the Great Commission implies a mandate for us to be relevant. To "go" means for us to be with them where they are, not for them to come to us.
So we're wise to start with what men "want" as the basis of our appeal. That’s why we have a saying around our office: “Give men what they need in the context of what they want.”
So what do men want? What will they find relevant? Of course, if all a man wants is "the world," he's not ready for what he needs anyway. But once he realizes the world will never let him become fully alive, he will invariably start asking the right questions...
- Why do I feel so alone?
- Why does my soul feel so dry?
- Who am I and why do I exist?
- What is the purpose of my life?
- How can I conquer these destructive behaviors?
- How can I heal my relationships?
- Does God care about me personally?
- What can I do to leave the world a better place?
Of course, these are the very questions for which Christianity provides the answer. So how can this help us with our ministries to men?
We will bear more fruit if we're relevant. When you meet a man, ask yourself, "What is the problem he is trying to solve?" Is it one of the questions above?
Then show him that you really understand--and care. And when the timing is right and the Spirit leads, show him how the gospel of Jesus can satisfy the deepest longings of his heart, mind, and soul. That’s how we make the gospel relevant and “sticky.”
Until every church disciples every man...