Why some men hate church is a key issue for our times. Many serious Christians have wondered why relatively fewer men than women are regular churchgoers. I came across a video recently that features a conversation with Murrow, author of the best selling book, Why Men Hate Church.
So, why do men hate church?
In the conversation, Murrow says that the reason men are staying away from Church is that the Church has been on a feminizing path for the past couple of generations. By feminizing, Murrow means that many churches have emphasized making choices that feature safety, a lowering of moral and behavioral standards, and a style of worship that plays on emotional responses to God. These types of choices tend to appeal more to women than to men. These choices may account for why the percentage of church goers tend to be between 60-70%. Bottom line: much in a typical church service and a typical church weekly program doesn’t touch men in the significant areas of their lives.
It is almost as if many churches have chosen to speak feminine. In other words that much of what the church says is in a language that women understand and respond to, but that men find confusing and unappealing. “I’m falling in love with Jesus more each day.” is a theme of some of the popular worship music churches use in worship. I can personally testify to the confusion of standing for worship in a church service and being embarrassed as words like that flashed up onto the screen. Jesus the strong captain I can relate to. I can understand Jesus the courageous sacrifice. Jesus the King of Kings I find inspiring. But Jesus the love of my life? Sorry, no. Feminine language is often a turnoff to men, who otherwise might be drawn to Jesus. After all, Jesus had little trouble attracting male followers to his ministry. Why should the 21st century be any different?
I am not saying that churches need to speak masculine rather than feminine. There is much in the Bible that appeals directly to women. Maybe it would be better if churches just spoke human. Speak on topics and issues and in a way that both men and women understand. Jesus did speak about virgins waiting for the bridegroom and women losing valuable coins. But he also spoke about farming, fishing, and fathers–concepts men could relate to. It is time men led the way in rediscovering masculine spirituality.