Many divorces begin with the familiar line, “I love you, but I’m not ‘in love’ with you.” Those of us who help marriages in distress have heard these words more times than we care to recall. People who feel “out of love” think they’ve stumbled into some strange and unusual place of relationship failure from which there is no escape. Some are afraid they married the wrong person. They’re scared their love experiment with this particular person failed. Maybe, since now they understand themselves better, and they know their spouse better, they discover that they are incompatible. Or perhaps there’s […]

Unless the Lord builds the house, those who build it labor in vain. Unless the Lord watches over the city, the watchman stays awake in vain. It is in vain that you rise up early and go late to rest, eating the bread of anxious toil; for he gives to his beloved sleep. Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them! He shall not be put to shame when […]

In part one we saw that all men want to be validated. Men want to know that someone respects them, notices them, appreciates them, and loves them. Men want to know that someone sees them and approves of them. We’re supposed to get this as boys from our dads. We considered that God’s original design was to raise his sons via human fathers. We noted that fathers form people and are crucial in the formation of their children emotionally, spiritually, mentally, sexually, and psychologically. Through their physical and relational presence (or absence), fathers make (or break) people. We also saw […]

Anyone who has spent time around men knows that men want to be validated. Men want to know that someone respects them, notices them, appreciates them, and loves them. Men want to know that someone sees them and approves of them. After four decades of living life as a man and observing other men, I can tell you that men not only want this, they need this. I believe our Creator made us to crave and thrive on acceptance and belonging. You’ve heard of the “God-shaped void.” I think there is a “Dad-shaped void.” Something else I’ve learned: if we […]

Life is a struggle. From the process of birth to the last moments you draw breath. It takes effort and determination to come into this world and to stay alive and thrive in it. Everything you want in this life you will have to work hard for. What is worth struggling for? What is not? Where should you invest your efforts to get what you really desire out of life? You get to choose what you want to struggle for. If you were to ask the average person what they consider to be essential for a good life, you would […]

Your life just isn’t as happy and carefree as you think it should be. It’s your husband’s fault, it’s your husband’s job’s fault, it’s your job’s fault, and it’s your children’s fault. But it couldn’t be your fault, could it? You just want to be happy. You just want love. You just want to be appreciated. You just want to be acknowledged for all you do for the family. You just want a perfect life, darn it! Is that too much to ask for all you do and all you give and how serve everyone else! Yes, yes it is. […]

There are many men in our culture who relate to “the church” in one of three ways: The Antagonistic The Apathetic The Affiliated, Non-Activated. The antagonistic are those who have an ax to grind with God, religion, or organized Christianity. Perhaps they had a bad experience at some point or they were seriously wronged in some way by a pastor or church leader. Their anger over some real or perceived mistreatment or injustice has left them disappointed, disenchanted, disgruntled, or just done with the whole church thing. Perhaps their antagonism stems from a one-time event or a culmination of things. […]