I’ve been reading and listening around issues of why it’s hard to be a man these days. Because the pressure is on, as I wrote about in my book Rough Diamonds.

Most of the men I now connect with are not struggling so much with being a tough guy as I worked with (or arrested) in the Police – but rather they’re struggling as they try to be a ‘nice bloke‘.

That sounds okay, but it’s not the authentic masculinity Jesus modelled and its pursuit can lead to the creation of passive aggressive, approval seeking, manipulative wimps.

This leads to frustration, giving to get, fixing rather than listening, avoiding conflict, constantly seeking approval and hiding mistakes. The ‘nicest bloke you’d ever meet’ can also be dishonest, secretive, controlling, passive-aggressive, isolated, and addictive.

I’m convinced that trying to be a Christian nice bloke can compound and collude with this rather than help it. As a man who’s moved from tough guy to recovering nice bloke I want to meet up with other men more, as both scripture and psychology affirm this is the best way to become the man God made me to be.

I’ll be meeting with the kettle on (no bacon butties, in fact no danish, no other incentives other than a chat and connection with other men and God) for one hour, 9am to 10am in Ivy Didsbury M20 2GP on the following dates to kick off ‘BRO UP.’

26/1, 9/2, 23/2, 9/3, 23/3

We won’t be beating our chests or shaving them. We might bare our souls eventually; but it’ll be great if you’re there. Please put the dates you can make in the diary and commit to joining us for what could be a life saver for some, but what I pray will be a life giver for many.