Paul Mayers is guest blogging over at Jason Clark's website while Jason is on vacation. He put up this post today about the imbalance of the male/female ratio in the Church at large.
My reaction is somewhat along the lines of Helen's (one of the commentors). Paul's summary of Murrow's "10 things men fear about church," from the book Why Men Hate Going to Church, is intriguing enough that I'm interested in reading the book.
Some questions (real questions, not rhetorical): Do men really value excellence more than women? Are women more willing to "check their brains at the door" than men are? If many churches teach against homosexuality, what creates the fear that churches will foster homosexuality or effeminacy in male children? Why do we care what people (male or female) wear to church? How could we go about making the pastorate less of an "alpha male" position? And, as and aside, why don't men like to sing?
I find that at least three of the items on the list apply to me, a woman. The number would increase to four if the reason men are uncomfortable with singing in church has to do with the squishiness of much Christian worship music rather than anxiety over their level of talent. I wonder if many of the items on the list aren't more based on personality and culture, rather than gender. Of course, I have often been accused (?) of thinking/acting like a man in certain areas of my life, so maybe I am an anomaly.
I would love to hear other people's thoughts on this issue. Anyone have any practical ideas for dealing with this list in a congregational setting?