Is there a solution to #MeToo?
Day after day we’ve been bombarded with headlines of men behaving badly in the news. Popular men, celebrities, politicians, well-liked men, who’ve done things that have shocked and disappointed us all. We’ve all grown tired of these sad headlines. It’s time for a change. It’s time to hear about men behaving heroically. Proudly. In ways that honor their families, workplaces, and communities.
While men’s minister Kenny Luck doesn’t mention the #MeToo movement in his new book, Dangerous Good, it’s hard for me to not think that he wasn’t thinking of it while he was writing. He mentions men behaving badly and a “moral vacuum”. He asks: “Will masculinity continue to retain its negative connections with the world’s injustices?” ( xv) It’s similar to the question asked by Dan Connor in the recent Roseanne TV reboot, when Dan asks “When did masculinity become a dirty word?”
But this revolution, a “Coming Revolution of Men Who Care”, is all about the power of men who love Jesus, and not just guys who go to church, but guys who will fight for good. Those who will fight for the things that matter in life. Those guys have the power, together, for good. Kenny says, “When a man’s character and conduct become healthy, it changes things. Most directly, the women and children connected to his life and choices suffer less and develop better.” (p.95)
Dangerous Good is meant to inspire men to be their best selves, as the men they were meant to be, through the power of God. Kenny Luck challenges Christian men to be brave, to be in community with one another, and to think about their legacies. He doesn’t play along with gender wars of putting men and women against each other – he tries to inspire men to take on their God-given roles as warriors.
FTC Disclosure: I received a free copy of it from the publisher in exchange for my review.
What do you think of when you hear the word legalism? Do you envision a long list of rules, regulations and duties to be followed in order to be considered faithful? Do you picture well-meaning people who have simply lost their way on their quest to be found obedient? In Robots or Rebels, Robert Pruitt tackles this difficult topic.
The meaning of the title unfolded much differently than I expected. Robots, as Pruitt calls them, are what I expected them to be: people who blindly follow the rules of legalism. I had a different picture in mind for what the “rebels” would be. I envisioned this group to be filled with “holy wrath” or a desire for justice, similar to what Jesus felt when He turned over the tables in the temple because the Lord’s house was transformed from a house of worship into a place where people were cheated. I pictured that the “rebels” would be people who still had a heart for God, but were tired of empty religion and just wanted to follow the Lord. I envisioned that Pruitt would lay out a definition for legalism, how to escape it, and potentially real-life stories of those who had been damaged by it.
Pruitt’s “rebels” weren’t what I envisioned. The “rebel” is one who has rejected legalism and turned into the Prodigal Son, running from Christ, making terrible life choices. I was very disappointed to see such a dichotomy portrayed for those who encounter legalism: you’re either a robot (blindly following rules that aren’t prescribed by the Bible, rules that don’t need to be followed) or you’re a rebel (turning away from Christ, rejecting legalism).
There’s a third, healthier option: accepting Christ but rejecting man-made rules. I’m so disappointed Pruitt didn’t present this option. If you’re wondering if you’re in a legalistic church, or if you’re trying to find out how to find a healthy church after leaving a legalistic church, this book will probably not give you the answers you need.
FTC disclosure: I received a free copy of Robots or Rebels from Ambassador International, the publisher. The thoughts contained in this review are my own.