Husband, father, grandfather, brother, uncle, and friend. With over 30 years of pastoral ministry experience, I felt the need to encourage my brothers (and sisters) in the Lord with brief, but powerful and encouraging blogs to spur you on to love and good deeds.
My name is Rob Lee, I am 58 years old and I have been in full-time ministry for almost 35 years; 25 of those years I served as a Lead Pastor for two great churches. In December of 2020 I felt a strong leading of the Lord to take a hiatus from full-time ministry and relocate to the suburbs of Kansas City, MO where my wife Debi (of 33 years) and I could be near our three adult children, their spouses, and children; our grandchildren. We recently purchased a home and are settling into our new place. It’s been a faith walk all of the way and God has been with us in every step.
We have begun to fellowship with a local church. I am developing a relationship with their men’s ministry and the brothers who participate in it. I am currently serving as an interim pastor in a local church but am continuing to seek the Lord with the ‘right job at the right time;’ His time. In the meantime, I am very busy doing a variety of household construction tasks that are germane to my skillset, work ethic, and need. My wife serves as a schoolteacher in a local Christian school, which is her heart’s desire and I believe, calling. It’s a good plan filled with faith in God, a wonderful family, beautiful grandkids, and many new friends.
I feel that it’s time for me to begin to write an inspirational blog for men and put my thoughts and prayers to print that I feel the Lord has placed on my heart as I transition into this new place of life and ministry. I have decided to call it ‘Encourage Men’ and make the blog something that will edify the body of Christ, particularly men. It would seem that many of our brothers in the Lord need the encouragement and prompting to be the men of God that the Master (Hebrew: Adoni) has called them to be. This blog is not only for men, but the women who will benefit from the men in their lives who are encouraged in their faith.
The ‘men’ part of the title has more to do with defining what godly masculinity looks like in the life of a man of God. This blog is about building up a man’s faith, our faith in God through Jesus Christ and His Word. This blog is about Jesus and how we as men can make Him more central to our lives in practical ways; using the talents and resources He has given to us for His glory.
I understand that I am not the only man with a story, a testimony, and an experience of brokenness in life. While I don’t like the ride at times, I do understand how God can develop unique character in me and others that would otherwise never happen without being broken. Brokenness and tears are part of the process that God uses to develop us, mold us, and make us into the image of His Son Jesus. The Lord is with us as we endure seasons of hardship and pain associated with this sin-laden world. Christ’ righteousness also manifests in us as we give the Lord a chief place in our lives. Our righteousness is in Christ and His call for us to be holy.
David said it this way,
“The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears, and delivers them out of all their troubles. 18 The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart, and saves such as have a contrite (are crushed) spirit. 19 Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers him out of them all.” – Psalm 34:17-19
- I am a righteous man; I have a broken heart and, at times, a crushed spirit. I know God is with me and in me. He will deliver me and show me the way in His time. Until then, I am going to trust in Him and press on. We must all realize that all we like sheep have gone astray, each of us has turned to his (or her) own way, and God has laid upon the Christ Himself, all of our sins Isaiah 53:5. If we call upon Jesus for forgiveness, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all our unrighteousness 1 John 1:9.
The closer we get to the end of the line, the clearer our mission is on this earth; Christ’ great commission. As we approach the kingdom of heaven, so we can see with greater clarity, the separation of the sheep from the goats, the right from the left, the wheat from the chaff, and so forth. This is the Master’s way, before receiving His people into the place He has prepared for them, He must first separate them out, test them, and then if they have placed their faith in Him, the Lord graciously receives them into the reward He has prepared for them.
The works that we do for the Lord in this life is not what saves us or makes us worthy to enter into the kingdom of heaven, rather, it’s our faith in Jesus that saves us James 2:14f. The works that we do for the Lord are a byproduct of our love for the Lord and the great salvation that He has afforded us through our faith in Jesus. Only Jesus can save us, we can’t save ourselves. Our love for the Lord is manifested in our love for our fellow man, particularly those who are destitute and cast out. This is why it’s easier for the poor and needy to enter into the kingdom of heaven, Mathew 19:23f because they can see their need and are more likely to cry out to a holy God for their salvation.
As men we must use the tools that God has entrusted into our care. We must be sensitive to the prompting of the Holy Spirit as we move along this path in life, listening to His voice. We must hear God’s heart when it comes to those around us who are lost, destitute, and in need of the very salvation we have received by faith in Jesus. Too many men live their lives, amass their fortunes, and then die in their sin only to enter into an eternity without Jesus. We must not be misinformed or disillusioned by the devil because he knows the rewards that God has prepared for those who have placed their faith in Jesus. We can make a difference individually as we allow the Lord to prompt us to share our faith in Christ with those He has entrusted to our care.
It is my hope that you will be encouraged in your walk with the Lord, or develop a personal relationship with God through Jesus, as you read these blogs of encouragement for men of faith. While the focus is on ministry to and for men, the ladies are always invited as they too will be encouraged when they see their brothers in Christ being encouraged. I have never done anything like this before, this is my first time using this media genre and I am looking forward to producing some great blogs of faith for my brothers in the Lord.