One of my absolute favorite quotes by the founder of the Navigators Dawson Troutmen is “Men’s hearts are not set ablaze by small ideas.” I know in the deep wells of my soul this is true. Every time I hear the quote something deep in my gut says “YES!” Yet, we are surrounded by small ideas every where.
>>What men are for….burping, farting and ooggling at women.
>> What men are called to be about….getting more stuff than the next guy be it money, recognition, enviable status/titles, leisure time, trinket’s & toys, etc…
>>How men are to spend our days…in front of the TV, in trivial service, in jobs that do not ask us to bring our God given abilities, in surface relationships where we posture, pose and compete.
These are just some of the small ideas we are surrounded with. Small ideas that lead men to boredom. Boredom that leads men into the traps of extramarital sexual obsessions, gambling addiction, drinking problems, and other areas where men try to create a “spark” in their life again. Christians men also seek some kind of feeling of being alive that our uninspiring version of following a Surburan Jesus is not providing. These are good men who if they saw they had a noble reason to NOT just give up to these small ideas would give their lives to noble causes/ideals. But very few men today are called to any high road that has a ounce of Inspiration to it but plenty are called to a religious life of duty & obligation.
Christianity has there own versions of small ideas that don’t call men up to much….be a perpetual enrollee in the “how not to sin 101” class that never graduates, repeat after me microwave curriculum teachers. Compare that to David’s mighty men or the adventures of acts missionaries founding new churches in hostel territories at risk of their very lives, or disciples sent out to preach, cast out devils without a bible degree and little to no experience, or confronting evil directly vs watching it passively & complaining about it, or passionate poets who pour out their hearts to God unashamedly, etc…
Jesus provides SO much to call us up to yet we seem to get mired down into the mundane minutia of small ideas. Stand up against the LIE that all Jesus offers men are life-sucking rules and boring dutiful tasks to complete. That is NOT the abundant LIFE Jesus calls men to.
Jesus calls us to take the gospel to every nation and tribe teaching them to obey all Jesus taught. Starting 1st where we live.
Jesus calls us to confront and overcome evil with good.
Jesus calls us to hear his voice and “follow him” where ever He leads
Jesus calls us to be completely counter-cultural in loving our enemies, walking extra miles unasked, speaking the truth in love, being extravagantly generous, being open handed with all we have obtained, healing the sick, prophesying , eagerly desiring supernatural spiritual gifts, seeing a need and asking God to meet it through you, praying in your secret rooms until answers become realities etc….
Jesus calls us to so much, how could our version of walking with God be so mundane, so routine, so domesticated & so lifeless?
“The spiritual life cannot be made suburban. It is always frontier, and we who live in it must accept and even rejoice that it remains untamed.” -Howard Macey
Then there is the factor of passing down a lifeless small idea religion to our kids which will not “capture” their heart as it has not captured ours.
“We need to teach our kids in such a way that they understand that to walk away from Jesus is to walk away from a life of faith, risk, & adventure & to choose a life that is boring, mundane, & ordinary.”- Erwin Mcmanus
The above is a great quote but if you are a father that DOES NOT live a christian life that requires faith, takes risk or chooses the larger life God provides us, then repent. And seek to become that Man. As Psalms 69:36b says “the children inherent the land”the fathers possessed.” Your legacy will not be your words but what ground you gained with God while you lived that will provide your children their starting place.
“Jesus promised his disciples 3 things: that they would be completely fearless, absurdly happy, & in constant trouble.”- G K Chesterton
I guarantee small ideas do not lead one into troubles, absurd happiness or require anything of us, like courage or faith.
Our hearts are to be set ABLAZE with the grand ideas Jesus has laid out for us to walk in and walk out. Seek him to “fan into flame the gifts of God that is in you- 2 Tim 1:6”. Seek other men out “as iron sharpen’s iron so one man sharpen’s another- Pr 27:17”. They can sharpen you with stories of failures, recoveries, restorations and victories until your heart is truly burning bright in God’s purposes knowing Victory is your final destination no matter the path you go through to get there.