MAN TO MAN
“As iron Sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.” Proverbs 27:17
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Oklahoma United Methodist Men on Facebook
“Reversing the trend”
I recently had a district president ask me, “What’s going on? I never hear anything!” His question hit squarely upon one of the problems I have sought to address since I became UMMen conference president – communication.
The answer to his question, in many cases, is, “There’s a lot going on!” The problem is that we rarely share what we’re doing with anybody outside our own local church.
The fact is, many local church groups have great ministries going that are impacting lives within their church as well as the community around them.
Men are growing spiritually through men’s study groups, they are involved with prison ministry, hunger relief efforts, car care clinics, scouting ministry, home and camp repair, to name a few.
While we do read about some UMMen activities in the Contact, (the Oklahoma Conference Newspaper) until recently, we really haven’t had a venue to easily and quickly share what the local groups are doing. Now, the Oklahoma UMMen Facebook page offers an informal forum for sharing stories, photos and videos of your group’s activities. Retreats, rallies, and other events can be posted on the page and find immediate readership.
For those who “don’t do Facebook”, there is the more familiar e-mail.
Developing a district-wide e-mail distribution list, or a district UMMen webpage, is another way of offering a venue for sharing local church groups’ activities.
The usual response I get when I invite people to participate in such corporate activities is, “What’s in it for me (us)?” Well, there may not be an immediate or obvious benefit for the local group. However, I believe the increased vitality and interest that the corporate body (i.e. the district, conference) receives from such postings and sharing will eventually be a blessing to the local group.
Life breeds life! Enthusiasm is contagious!
Think of the number of churches with an aging and dying men’s group, or no group at all, that might be revived or initiated by the witness of your group’s activities.
I think we get it backwards sometimes.
What we get out of something isn’t nearly as important as what we can contribute!
UMMen, like the United Methodist Church, is aging and shrinking. It will take an investment on all our parts if the trend is going to be reversed. Taking the time to post pictures and stories online about your group’s events is one way to make such an investment.
And don’t think it’s all about numbers. It’s about the spiritual vitality of the men and the church!