Welcome to REAL Men RoCK

This blog is about the issues men face and things I have experienced.

I hope you will be encouraged, challenged, and stirred to take action.

Proverbs 27:17 (The Message)

17 You use steel to sharpen steel, and one friend sharpens another


ighteous   E ncouraging   A ccountable   L oving 


ely on    C hrist's   K indness

Sunday, November 28, 2010

As 2010 Draws to a Close

If you are like me you have been hurt by other people but like me you have to admit you are guilty of having hurt some as well. Both these things happened to me this year. The pain and the shame set me back. As we end this year I think it would be good for us to consider what God tells us through Jesus about how we must handle both situations. 

In Matthew 23-24 Jesus tells us: 
"This is how I want you to conduct yourself in these matters. If you enter your place of worship and, about to make an offering, you suddenly remember a grudge a friend has against you, abandon your offering, leave immediately, go to this friend and make things right. Then and only then, come back and work things out with God.

Jesus is telling us that if we go before the Father and lay our petitions down before Him and do not consider those who have something against us then our prayers are not heard.

Then in Matthew 18: 15-17 Jesus tells us:
"If a fellow believer hurts you, go and tell him—work it out between the two of you. If he listens, you've made a friend. If he won't listen, take one or two others along so that the presence of witnesses will keep things honest, and try again. If he still won't listen, tell the church. If he won't listen to the church, you'll have to start over from scratch, confront him with the need for repentance, and offer again God's forgiving love.

Here Jesus is telling us if a fellow believer of His hurts us we must go to them and share what we feel they have done. 

In both of these situations Jesus is talking to believers about believers. But He also has something to say about what we should do when we are hurt no matter who has caused the situation. We find that in Matthew 14-15:
 "In prayer there is a connection between what God does and what you do. You can't get forgiveness from God, for instance, without also forgiving others. If you refuse to do your part, you cut yourself off from God's part.

No matter who it is that has hurt us we must make the effort to forgive them. If we don’t our attitude and our actions will be controlled by what they have done to us. It will hinder our development of healthy relationships and keep us from receiving God’s forgiveness for what we have done.

So as this year ends take the time to consider who it is that has hurt you and forgive them. Consider whom it is you have hurt and go to them and seek their forgiveness. Either way release the hurt to God and allow Jesus to comfort the pain that was caused.

Thursday, November 25, 2010


Today in the Untied States we are celebrating our yearly holiday called, "Thanksgiving". 

In 1621 the people who settled in Plymouth, Massachusetts as a community invited the local Indians to come and celebrate with them the good harvest they had. They thanked God for His blessings.

In 1789 George Washington acknowledge that it is God who bestows blessings on mankind.

In 1863 Abraham Lincoln suggested that the nation humbly acknowledge our disobedience and seek God's tender care for all who had suffered in the civil war.

In 1986 Ronald Regan encouraged the nation to give thanks to God with grateful hearts.

In 2003 George W. Bush reminded the nation of the freedoms we have and of their high cost.

A Thanksgiving Psalm 

Psalm 100: 1-2 On your feet now—applaud God! Bring a gift of laughter, sing yourselves into his presence. 

3 Know this: God is God, and God, God. He made us; we didn't make him. We're his people, his well-tended sheep. 

4 Enter with the password: "Thank you!" Make yourselves at home, talking praise. Thank him. Worship him. 

5 For God is sheer beauty, all-generous in love, loyal always and ever.

Romans 10: 11-13 Scripture reassures us, "No one who trusts God like this—heart and soul—will ever regret it." It's exactly the same no matter what a person's religious background may be: the same God for all of us, acting the same incredibly generous way to everyone who calls out for help. "Everyone who calls, 'Help, God!' gets help."

Whatever circumstance you find yourself I encourage you to take time today to offer thanks to God for what you do have. By focusing on the blessings you have the problems you are facing will seem less important.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Possibly Some Good Will Result

I am in the process of writing a book about my Great, Great Grandfather, Rev. Seth Gold Clark.

In an earlier post I explained how I discovered the following information and I want to just briefly refresh your memory.

On the morning of September 3rd as I was having my morning coffee I realized the time was almost exactly the time 38 years earlier that I learned about my father's death. I broke down as I thought about that morning and the unhealed wound that resulted. As I sat there with tears streaming down my face I began to think of the failures I had experienced the past year. How I leaped at an opportunity that probably was not from God and how it resulted in me not granting grace to a pastor friend that God had brought into my life. As the tears of memories mixed with the tears of shame a random thought crossed my mind.

A few years ago one of my cousins had sent me some information on our family tree and the random thought I had was to dig it out of the drawer and look at it. I pulled the stack of papers out of the drawer and as I thumbed through them I noticed something odd. There was more information about my Grandmother's side of the family than my Grandfather's side. On his side the tree began with my Great, Great Grandfather who was born on August 13, 1817.

Since I had several hours before I had to go to work I decided to do some research online. What I eventually found would change everything. It would also be the foundation for a book and hopefully a movie about the life of the Rev. Seth Gold Clark. It would also be what God used to renew my dream and reassure me that He was working in my life.

A Home-Mission Enthusiast

“The Church at home and abroad, Volume 24 By Presbyterian Church in the U.S.A.”

The Rev. Seth Gold Clark, who died at his home in Appleton City, Mo., on Friday, April 22, 1898, was one of the most enthusiastic and indefatigable home mission pioneers in the central West. For over fifty years incessantly active in the work he loved, he was one of the best examples of a missionary type now fast disappearing.

He was born in Delaware county, N. Y., August 13, 1817, and, after a boyhood spent on farms in New York and Ohio, graduated at Western Reserve College in 1843 and Western Reserve Seminary in 1846. He was licensed by the Presbytery of Cleveland, October 7, 1845, and began at once supplying three little mission churches in Ohio. From there he went to Bainbridge, O., where he was ordained in May, 1847, and remained two years. During his next pastorate, at Aurora, Ohio, his health failed. Then followed eleven years' service as district secretary of the A. B. C. F. M., and three as chaplain of the 10th

Ohio Volunteer Cavalry, from 1862 to 1865. Ten days before Atlanta was taken, he was captured and held at Andersonville Military Prison, but was soon released as a noncombatant. The twenty days' furlough he was then given to visit his family he " spent in helping reelect Lincoln." The mayor of Cleveland telegraphed the President to keep him in Ohio till after election, which he did. Unable on his return to the army to reach his regiment, then on its march to the sea, he was assigned by Gen. Thomas to the work of raising funds for the Sanitary Commission. In August, 1865, he became chaplain of the House of Correction in Detroit and of the Seamen's Friend Society. This he kept but a short time until, on January 2, 1866, he left his home to take up the work in which he was to become most successful, and for which he is best known.

At the close of the war, western Missouri, which had been repeatedly ravaged by both armies, retained but few of its former inhabitants and scarcely any churches. At the request of Dr. Henry Kendall, Mr. Clark came to Missouri to assist in reorganizing Presbyterian work. Of his beginnings here he once wrote: " The Board, by my request, made full provision for my salary the first year. I told them that if I went to such a burned-over country I did not want to intimate to any man, woman or child that a missionary needed anything to eat, drink or wear. I did not say money for a year, except when I paid my bills. The people were just as modest as I was—they never said money to me. I obtained a hardy mustang pony, and went in all directions, preaching the gospel wherever I found an opening." Does that seem a haphazard method, not to be reasonably expected to produce good results? In less than three years he organized churches at Holden in Johnson county: Greenwood in Jackson county; Harrisonville and Austin in Cass county; Butler, Lone Oak and Papinsville in Bates county; Hudson (now Appleton City) in 8t. Clair county, and Lamar in Barton county. Each of these churches he supplied until they were able to obtain regular services otherwise. Some years later two of these towns, unable to obtain expected railroads, died a natural death, as did their churches. Two other churches were outstripped by later organizations by other Presbyterian denominations. There remain today five good churches organized before 1870 by that one missionary " settled on horseback."

From 1871-76 Mr. Clark was financial agent for Highland University. The last two summers of that time were spent with a missionary tent outfit, furnished by Sunday schools in the East. He traveled through northern Kansas and southern Nebraska, preaching daily to congregations averaging 100 on weeknights and from 150 to 300 on Sundays. This was strictly pioneer work in regions beyond ministers and churches. He was everywhere gladly welcomed. This tent work he was accustomed to regard as the most successful work of his life. During 1877-78 he supplied the churches of Iola and Carlyle, Kans.; 1879-80, Baxter Springs, Galena and Empire, Kans.; 1881-5, Rich Hill, Rockville and Hume, Mo., all three of which he organized. He then spent ten years in southwestern Kansas, where he found nine counties adjoining, in neither of which was an organized church. During those years he organized eight churches, seven of which, in spite of drought and consequent depopulation of large districts, are still on our " Minutes." The year 1895 was spent with the Church of Raymore, Mo., which under his labors was much revived, and built a beautiful house of worship.

At last, when nearly eighty, with mind and voice unimpaired, he was forced by physical infirmities to give up his active ministry. It was an affecting scene, when by vote of Presbytery he was " honorably retired," and recommended to the Board of Relief. All knew of his active life, and realized that it was not boastfulness, which led him to rise and say that, able as he then supposed to preach better than ever before, he would gladly sacrifice his right arm rather than go onto the Board, if only he were physically able to continue in the ministry. No service did he ever shirk as too hard, no field as too unattractive. Always and everywhere he loved to proclaim salvation to the uttermost through Jesus Christ. Like every other true missionary, he recognized no bounds of race or clime, but worked and prayed for the universal spread of the gospel. No wonder Miss Mary Clark, the daughter of such a home missionary, should be found today a foreign missionary in distant Persia.

Mr. Clark was twice married; in 1866 to Miss Lucy Peck, who died in 1873, leaving five children; and, in 1875, to Miss Emma Perry, who survives him.
What a record! It will never be fully written on earth. His mission work in at least five states, the organization of 31 churches, most of which during the time of his ministry erected houses of worship, his army chaplaincy, his evangelistic work in prisons, battle fields, mining camps, frontier settlements, and in well-established communities east and west, his vigorous advocacy of education at home and abroad—these are a few reasons why he will be long held in grateful remembrance. A few months ago he modestly wrote of himself that his had been “a very busy, checkered life; possibly some good may result.

Yes, my great, great grandfather had a very busy and checkered life. The possible good that may result will be a book and movie that inspires men and women to move beyond their chains of slavery to a do nothing life and become the people God wants them to be.

I hope this post has brought you encouragement and hope.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Do You Feel Parked & Forgotten?

If some of your experiences in life are like mine there have been times when I have felt like the old truck pictured here. I am sixty years old and there are times I feel the world sees me as too old to continue to contribute to society. I feel as though people have forgotten the gifts and skills I have. As I do my dreams begin to rust.

Do you feel like your dreams have been delayed?

  Try dusting off your dream and doing some work to make it come true.

Are you frustrated as you watch others seem to be blessed by God?

  Try asking God to bless them even more.

Are you impatient with God's timetable?

  Try laying your impatience before God and ask Him to give you more patience.

Are you dissatisfied with your circumstances?

  Try not blaming others for where you are today and get busy changing your circumstances.

Do you want to break out of the prison that keeps you feeling abandoned, like you have been forgotten as your dreams rust? 

Before I share with you some ideas on how to break free I want to share some thing very important for you to remember. Look at Romans 8:  31 What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?

Anyone who wants to serve God cannot be held back from the mission He has for them! 

You may be feeling abandoned, forgotten and rusting but if you will begin with remembering Romans 8: 31 God will restore you.

Here are my ideas on how to put this into practice.

1. Ask God to restore your dreams.

2. Once He has revealed your restored dreams be sure and dedicate them to Him and His control.

3. Do not delay taking action to move towards accomplishing your dreams.

4. Be willing to take detours as God guides you toward fulfilment of your dreams.

5. Educate yourself and get the training necessary to achieve your dreams.

6. Get around people who will encourage you.

7. Keep moving forward and do not allow negative people to pull you back into the junkyard with them.

You do not have to continue to feel abandoned and forgotten with your dreams rusting. God wants to delight in your accomplishments especially when they glorify Him. Always remember if your dream is from God, "Who can keep you from achieving it?"

This is another post resulting from the sermon "Life Interrupted" by Mark Warner, Lead Pastor of Vineyard Church in Overland Park, KS.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Dream! But Dream the Right Dream

A sermon I heard at Vineyard Church in Overland Park, KS given by Lead Pastor, Mark Warner sparked this post.

I live in a nation of Dreamers. Some dream of own a home, others of running their own business and still others dream of becoming rich. Dreaming of own a home, running a business or becoming wealthy in themselves are not necessarily wrong dreams to have. They become misguided when they become the focus of one's life. When the person wanting to obtaining them will do anything, even use other people, to make them happen.

Before I say anything else I want to say I believe God is not against us having a home, us having a business or us becoming wealthy. What He is against and is not in alignment with what He wants in our life if we are pursuing those things without including Him in the mix. 

By including God in the mix we allow Him to provide the opportunities for our achieving our dreams. We place our dreams under His control and when we have reached success of our dreams we have the opportunity to give Him the credit bringing glory to Him through our dream.

In the sermon Mark gave he gave the following five points, which came from the story in Genesis 39 about Joseph being in prison, about having your dream in it's proper place in your life.

1. God will be with you.

Genesis 39: 23 The head jailer gave Joseph free rein, never even checked on him, because God was with him; whatever he did God made sure it worked out for the best.

2. Do whatever God puts before you.

Genesis 39:20-23 When his master heard his wife's story, telling him, "These are the things your slave did to me," he was furious. Joseph's master took him and threw him into the jail where the king's prisoners were locked up. But there in jail God was still with Joseph: He reached out in kindness to him; he put him on good terms with the head jailer. The head jailer put Joseph in charge of all the prisoners—he ended up managing the whole operation. The head jailer gave Joseph free rein, never even checked on him, because God was with him; whatever he did God made sure it worked out for the best.

3. Put the needs of others above your own. 

Genesis 40: 4-7 After they had been in custody for a while, the king's cupbearer and baker, while being held in the jail, both had a dream on the same night, each dream having its own meaning. When Joseph arrived in the morning, he noticed that they were feeling low. So he asked them, the two officials of Pharaoh who had been thrown into jail with him, "What's wrong? Why the long faces?"

4. Press in and listen to God.

Genesis 40: 8 They said, "We dreamed dreams and there's no one to interpret them." Joseph said, "Don't interpretations come from God? Tell me the dreams."

5. Stop trying to play God.

Genesis 40: 12-15 Joseph said, "Here's the meaning. The three branches are three days. Within three days, Pharaoh will get you out of here and put you back to your old work—you'll be giving Pharaoh his cup just as you used to do when you were his cupbearer. Only remember me when things are going well with you again—tell Pharaoh about me and get me out of this place. I was kidnapped from the land of the Hebrews. And since I've been here, I've done nothing to deserve being put in this hole."

When these five things work together you will be freed up to focus on what God's call is in your life. I am telling you that your call is not a house, a business or being wealthy. Your call has to do with worshipping God through all of your life, your home, your work and your finances.

When you submit your dreams to God's hands you free up your life to receiving His blessings. My advice to you is to realize the five things above: Acknowledge that God is with you, then do your best at what He has placed before you by focusing on the needs of others which will require you to press in and listen to God and by doing so you will not play God by trying to make the dream that God gave you come true.