This weekend I attended ‘Act Like Men’ and it was pretty good. Here are the details about what it is and what they are about.
But before I went, I stumbled across this blog entry that told me about what the conference was like two weeks ago. It broke my heart.
So with that in mind, I was hoping maybe they’d change. Or maybe it was just a misinterpretation. Or maybe they were like that. I don’t know. I have never heard any of these speakers speak before, so I didn’t want to go in with an unfair pre-judgment.
What I ended up with this weekend was an affirmation about what I need to be doing with my life as a follower of Christ. I came away remembering what I must do, what I must avoid, and what I have at my fingertips with God.
Let me first address that blog entry and the two major concerns that were stated. First of all, no gay joke was made at the conference I attended, so maybe they realized their ways and changed it.
Secondly, they did do the most insensitive man deal, but the people they chose didn’t have as serious insensitive situations like that from Ontario. We did boo the men for being insensitive, and the friend that ratted the man out got the iPad. The insensitive men were not rewarded and they were booed, knowing that what they did was not cool.
So maybe that experience in Canada was just a one-time thing, because what he pointed in that blog entry didn’t happen. With that, I can say that my experience was positive.
Now to the actual experience I had.
The first night for me was one of uncertainty. I didn’t know what to expect. I had never been to a conference of this magnitude. But I knew that I was going to get a bunch of worship music, powerful speakers and a conviction to do better.
In that first night, it was a basic and simple call out to men to be men. They can’t be women, they can’t be animals, they can’t be children and they can’t be superheroes. The message was that we are men and as men, we have to take our own responsibilities to lead our family, our church and our community. But we can’t lead with Jesus. No Jesus, no purpose. It was straight to the point. Yeah, James McDonald did over emphasize how he loved women, but overall, the message was pure and true. That night, over a hundred men committed or re-committed to Jesus at an altar call. A standing ovation was given to every man as they walked through the aisles.
That’s what heaven’s like. There’s a celebration. I was shed a tear because it was beautiful and the greatest joy I could feel for another fellow brother.
The following day was more music, more speakers. But one thing I liked that they did was they presented a video testimony during a short break. One testimony was shared of a man who was jailed, found Christ in jail and was truly transformed. The other was of a man who was angry, suicidal who came to Christ and his life was changed. That was great to hear.
As for the rest of the day, Lecrae was awesome. I had only listened to his music a couple of times, but I really liked what I heard. I love hip hop so this was really neat for me.
As for the speakers, they touched on things that men could relate to. The first one of the day was to remind us all that we had to stand firm in our faith, that we have to let go of what we think is right and instead find what is right with God, stand firm and be ready to go into battle firm in God. Especially in times when we try to stand firm, we don’t do it with the right equipment or the right mind-set. Sometimes we just are too scared. The conviction was to meet God and fight for what’s right, against all the attackers and temptations in our lives.
Another message that day was to remind us that we hold a lot of power with God. We have to let God seek us, and with that, we can seek others and build them up. We need to be like our Father. There was this theme about a steel chain and how we are all linked up. However, in our family, we might be that first link in the chain of believers. We have to stay strong so we can teach and help our family grow too. Maybe our sons will become believers. And with that, the chain grows. There’s so much at stake for us in our family and how much power we have through God to really make a change in their lives.
And the last two can be combined into one word: love. Love is what we need when we lead. We also need truth. But truth without love is hypocrisy. And also, love without truth isn’t good too. When we go out into the world, we have to do it in love. If we preach, teach or even speak to anyone about truth, it is meaningless if it isn’t done in love. If we are so caught up in proving people wrong and not helping them grow, then it just doesn’t work and nobody benefits.
With that, we have to clear our own belief and mind-set of what we think is right and follow what is right. Jesus showed us what is right and what is good. We can’t make the word what we like for our convenience. That’s not truthful. It’s surely not done out of love, but of our own selfishness. Love is what brought Jesus here. Love is why we are saved. Love is what will save others.
Overall, it was a good conference. There were some things that were preached that I understood, but didn’t really hit me. There were some things that gave me the necessary wake up call into how I want and need to lead my spiritual life.
I was thinking that this conference would shake me to the core and force me to really get my act straight. It didn’t do that. But that’s not saying it was bad. What this conference did do for me was get me to realize that I am still so far away from God. I haven’t really invested my life for Him. And with a platform as a man of God, there could be so much more that I can do but I haven’t yet because of fear, insecurity, uncertainty and many other things.
That’s what this conference taught me. I never realized how much power I have. But it’s because I haven’t even rooted myself with God right yet. I am just floating in water, not going anywhere. I have to get myself back to where I should be as a man of God. I have a much clearer idea and direction of how I want live my life on earth as a man of God.
Did this conference meet my expectations? It didn’t. I expected bigger things with more in your face conviction and call to action.
But did God meet me there and put me back on the right path? Absolutely. And it was what I needed.
So with that, the conference was a success for me. I left there knowing how I want and need to lead my life as a man of God. My life has changed for the better now. I’m still learning and still traveling this journey. But now I know exactly what I need to do and be in this journey.