Perhaps the most important part of the foundation of ManSchool is our need for constant connection to The Vine. Apart from the Vine, we are a dead branch. This is a daily call. Coming to church once a week is not close. It will not sustain you. You fight a war on three fronts – Satan, your flesh and this world. To attempt to fight a battle with enemies on all your flanks alone and disconnected from the Vine is madness. It’s suicide.
Men the only chance we have is a radical connection to the Vine. Let Him feed you, nourish you. Take your every struggle to Him… “What now Father?” Let him father you. Let him guide you. Going back to our earlier comments on fathering – we all have this deep need as men for a father to say, “I am proud of you. I love your life. I love what you’ve become.” And while our earthly fathers may not have fulfilled that role, the Father, the Vine longs to be your Father. Let Him guide you.
You have to create relational space for God – make room for Him. Our lives are crazy madness. You cannot run at the pace of the world and hope to have God. Our lives have no margin for our own soul, let alone God.
Nourish your soul. Be kind to yourself. Get away from the madness. Unplug from the matrix. Turn off your cell phone. Turn off the TV. Escape this feeling of urgency. Create calm and invite God in. See what your Father would want to whisper to you in the cool of the evening walking in the garden. Be still…and know He is God.
You live in a completely toxic culture. Period. Accept it. You face three mortal enemies – Satan, your flesh and this world. None of these three will relent.
Jesus wants to feed you life, Zoe (the Greek word for life is “Zoe”) daily. Like a vine feeds a branch. Drawing upon God is your first task. It takes priority over your wife, your job and your kids. Start with Him. Draw upon the stream of living water to be nourished.
Spend time alone in the “real” instead of the artificial. Beach. Mountains. Camping. Sitting by a rocky creek just listening to the water flow. Watch the sun rise or set. Feel God.
Relief or Restoration? There is a huge difference. A beer, a bag of chips, your chair and the remote is just relief. Porn seems like relief. Even sex with our wives can feel like relief. “Just give me some relief”. Restoration restores the soul vs. the escape of relief. Relief is a bottomless pit. Restoration is fresh water, fresh wind, fresh fire that heals and equips and connects you to Zoe.