So many times, we use words without really stopping to think about their meaning, especially if they are words we use often. Such was the case when I began to write this article on “fellowship.” So, I decided to look up the meaning of this word in the dictionary; one of the definitions used is “a community of interest, activity, feeling or expression.” Now, I know what a community is, but I decided to check this word out as well. The definition I found was not what I was thinking at all; the dictionary defined community as “a unified body of individuals.” These two definitions combined to change the way I was thinking about going with this article. The combined definitions are: a fellowship is a body of individuals, unified in their interests, activities, feelings, or experiences.
The early Christians, in Acts 2:42, “continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in prayers.” They were strong in the unity of their shared interests, activities, feelings, or experiences.
The core objective of Boys’ Ministries is discipleship– to provide boys with a clear picture of biblical manhood, according to the model of Jesus Christ and with a process by which to pursue it. Simply put– providing boys with a picture and a process for Christlike manhood. John Eldridge writes in his book, Wild at Heart, “Masculinity is bestowed. A boy learns who he is from a man or a company of men. He can learn it no other place.” Every boy needs a community of men and boys with whom he can identify and feel a sense of belonging.
Men and boys learn best side by side doing things. This is how relationships are best formed: the more things we do together, the stronger the relationships are. The stronger our relationships, the more effective our ministry can be. Mentoring does not have to be complicated, but it does have to intentional. Mentoring is simply investing in the life of a boy, finding a shared interest, and building a relationship. It is providing a picture and a process for Christlike manhood.
This is what Boys’ Ministries wants to see in all our churches: a strong fellowship of men and boys, unified in their interests, activities, feelings, and experiences, to make disciples and men of God.