Despite the last 30 years of trying to make men and women exactly the same it is still pretty obvious that we are different. This definitely shows up in how we fellowship with other Christians. Women are quick to talk about their feelings, their ups and downs, etc. They are certainly not afraid to be vulnerable. Men on the other hand learn from an early age that vulnerability is not positive, attractive, or beneficial. We don’t like to open up, share our feelings, or say “I love you” to another man. Studies have shown that women use far more words during the course of the day than men do. Most men just aren’t big talkers. The result is that our fellowship among men is often lacking.
So what can we do to get men to experience fellowship at its best? I think for men it comes down to shared experience. We don’t have much to say unless we have something we can relate to. Time constraints and busy schedules keep our iron from rubbing and we miss out on valuable fellowship. We don’t have a hard time talking about similar sports interests or who won the pennant. We made time to know what happened at the ball game. Shared experiences generate discussion and fellowship. One reason I enjoy things like Fantasy Football, service projects, and prayer breakfasts is because we really don’t have much to talk about unless we have shared experiences. First we have to make time for each other.
We certainly do not need to expect men to be like women. That is just not attractive to anyone or really very helpful. But we do need to find more ways to get men engaged in meaningful fellowship with other men. What have you found works well to get men to grow closer in their relationships with each other?