I’ve heard about it for quite some time but had never taken time to visit. So I left Chesterfield early this morning to visit the guys who gather on Thursdays at Manera (or more commonly known as Panera) near Virginia Center Commons. They were not exaggerating! There were about 45 guys from at least five different churches gathered for coffee, food and fellowship at 6:30 AM. Just before 7 AM, Jeff Lee, Discipleship Pastor from New Hanover Presbyterian Church, stood up to welcome the crowd, make some announcements and hand out… rather throw out some “Man Up” awards.
The group is studying Andy Stanley’s book When Work and Family Collide. After Jeff’s comments, they count off and divide into small groups for a facilitated discussion of this week’s chapter. I jumped in with five other guys ranging in age from 16 to much older than 16. It was a great time; I was personally challenged, encouraged and sharpened.
Guys, this is a creative, effective and simple way to ENGAGE, EQUIP & ENCOURAGE men in your church or community. Bottom line… the place isn’t magical, the particular book isn’t the key (but the message has to be Biblical), what’s happening here is working because men are being ENGAGE, EQUIPPED & ENCOURAGED IN THEIR WALK WITH CHRIST AND THEIR ABILITY TO LEAD THEIR FAMILIES.
I’m sure the Manera Crew would welcome you for a visit. Perhaps you could become a regular participant or just get some ideas about how to do something similar in your community.