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Mother’s Day is On Sunday


Women: You are Gate-keepers

Part I
Women, you are the gate-keepers. You keep the gates to the most unique resource in the world – you. You keep the gate to the most blessed place in the world – home. God has commissioned you as the daughters and mothers of the world to be absolutely diligent about yourself and the happenings around you. Your presence sets the stage for all of life.

You have the unique power to influence the world as only women can. Do not fear to share your giftings in appropriate ways to appropriate persons. Do not fear to speak and live with the authority of your God. You matter as only you can; as a unique creation of your Heavenly Father.

Ladies, you are not wall flowers. You are beautiful, but remember that earthly beauty can be vain. Do not sit around and wait for some prince charming on a white horse to…. You know the story.

This is not the perfect world of I kissed dating good bye. This is the real world of men and women and sin and sadness and joy and laughter. In this world you are very important. You keep the gates. With courage and candor, with joy and gladness, you have the privilege and responsibility to keep the gates of life. Guard yourself first – your body, soul, and spirit and your heart.

You (in this culture) make the final decision about dating and marriage. If you say, ‘no’, the answer is no! Be wise. Be sensitive. Be discerning. Choose God and the best response in every situation.

Give us as men opportunities to prove ourselves. We should earn the privilege of your company. We should be totally trustworthy. We should consider it an honor to have the blessing of your presence for a discussion or for dating. Keep your bar high.

Get to know us before you dismiss us. So many young men are being turned down when they wish to date. Why is that? Are you able to make decisions about us before you really know us? At least take time to know who we are and what we are about.

At the same time, do not give attention to men who do not display Godly behaviors. Naughty boys can be fun but they don’t typically make good husbands. Don’t reinforce our wrong behaviors. Ignore us when we are foolish. Don’t give us the attention we crave if we are doing bad things. Just so you know, you have every right to expect men to be honorable gentlemen. You have every right to expect our best attitudes and behaviors at all times. That is the gate that you keep.

Jesus Has an Attachment to You.


You are constantly on His mind – you are written on God’s hand.
Jesus did not come to earth to be served but to be a servant.

In a world of warnings about enmeshment and codependency and so many other kinds of behaviors as being very unhealthy, we could begin to wonder about Jesus.

He left a perfectly safe Heaven to live here with sinners like you and I
He put up with 12 men who did not agree
He taught those men when they did not seem to care
He gave time to women and men who were not acceptable in society
He was not ashamed to be seen with them and bless them
He allowed them to express their emotional care for him
He forgave people who were bent on killing him while they did just that
He walked into certain death for you when He could have avoided it

You are constantly on His mind
Because He loves you just because you are you
He hung naked on a cross for you
He took the shame that was/is yours – He did it for you
He died an excruciating death for you
He was hungry so you could be filled
He was thirsty so you could drink
He was naked so you could be clothed
He became a curse so you do not have to be cursed
He was alone so you do not have to be
All this for no charge to you – He paid your cost
He has that level of attachment to you
What emotionally healthy, self-respecting person would do that?

You can reject Him – He still loves you
You can spit in His face – He still loves you
You can refuse Him – He still loves you
You can hate Him – He still loves you

You can love Him – and His heart will rejoice
You can love Him – and you will know real love
You can love Him – and you will have real life
You can love Him – and you will have real joy
You can love Him and He will be honored

He will turn your water into wine
He will raise you from the dead
He will pray all night for you
He will weep over you
He will pursue you like He pursued Peter
Like God pursued Adam and Eve
He will seek for you – even if He has 99 others who are safe
He will look for you – like the father of the prodigal
He will run to you – like the father of the prodigal
He will put a new coat on you – like the father of the prodigal
He will make a banquet for you – like the father of the prodigal
He will defeat the devil for you
He will forgive your sins

You are on His mind
You are in His heart
You are in His plans
What emotionally healthy person
Could have that intensive attachment to you?

Think about Jesus
When you are told that you should not go out of your way for those who will never pay you back
When you are told that you should stop helping people
When you are told that you should not bless those who accuse you

Think about Jesus
He is calling disciples – even today
You are constantly on his mind
Follow Him and He will be constantly on your mind
That is healthy emotional attachment

Many, O LORD my God, are Your wonderful works Which You have done; And Your thoughts toward us Cannot be recounted to You in order; If I would declare and speak of them, They are more than can be numbered.
Psalms 40:5

Girls are Not the Enemy


Two monks were walking along. One old and one young. They came to a deep stream where a teenage girl was wanting to cross. The older monk crossed and walked ahead. The younger monk picked up the girl and carried her across. He then caught up with the older monk. They walked together silently for a mile.

The older monk spoke first.
“Brother, we do not do things like that!”
He went on to lecture the young man about proprieties.

Eventually the younger man responded:
“Brother, I put the girl down a mile ago.
Are you still carrying her?”

The “Two Monks” story could have been about any two men. The difference is in the men. The difference in the men is striking. They had different views of women.

Girls are not the enemy. Girls are beautiful creations of their Creator God. Men and women are created to be complementary parts of the human creation.
Neither are to be exploited by the other.
Neither are to be shunned by the other.
Neither are to be used by the other.
We are part and parcel of God’s plan for His creation.
We are here as heirs together of His grace.
We are here to live and love and respect each other.

When men are not real men they go either of two ways. Either they exploit the women OR they stay away from them and see them as seductresses (whether the women have that self-perception/behavior or not). How sad can this be? What is the Godly way for men and women to relate?

Girls and women are waiting and longing for men who are real men: strong, safe, caring, compassionate, conversant, respecting and protecting. Men with real love who see the beauty of the heart in spite of any externals. Girls long for real men whom they could trust on the remotest island on the darkest night.

Real men see the beauty of the Creator in the beauty of the creation. They grieve for the pain that is caused by the dysfunction and abuse of God’s ideal. Real men are engaged in restoring that ideal. Real men respect and protect all girls and women.

Most men, on the other hand, tend to fall into one of the two above mentioned categories. Men are men and they need to see the heart and hand of the Creator in the creation. Regardless of their station in life they need to see themselves as men of God first, before any other self-perceptions, earned or endowed.

The ideal is for men and women of all ages to honor each other and live Godly lives together on this planet. Married or single, we honor and respect each other. We do not fear each other. We complement each other in many ways and at all times. That is God’s plan.

So, one ‘monk’ can see the girl as an enemy who might make him fall into sin – in fact or in thought.

The other ‘monk’ can see the girl as a real life person with a real need and meet that need with absolutely no thought of expectation of improper compensation. May his tribe increase as men follow his example as we bless the girls God brings into our lives. Girls are not the enemy.

Dear Men,


Where are you? Ever since Eden, God is looking for real men. Are you one of them? You should be. You need to be. You can be.

In an age of Super Bowl where men are trying to harm each other and of half-time shows were men gawk at half-naked ladies, where are the real men? Men, where are you?

In an age of partisan politics where civil decency is replaced by childish behaviors in people who are called to be examples and role models for the nation, where are you?

In an age where immorality and sexual misbehavior and abuse are being uncovered in the Anabaptist world, where are you?

In an age of smart phones that make you stupid. In an age of images and screens that you allow to invade the integrity of your life. In an age where your private purity is corrupted by vice, where are you?

In generations of church splits and appeals by the people to the church leaders because trust is lost, where are you.?

Where are you when your daughter breaks up with her boyfriend because she discovered his unacceptable, not to mention sinful behavior? Are you supporting her as the father that she needs? Are you supporting her or are you excusing the boyfriend’s behavior? Where are you when your daughter needs you?

Where are you when your daughter is afraid to date because she knows too much about the behaviors of the young men around her? Are you calling her brothers and the other young men to live Godly lives or are you excusing their duplicity? What is the example that you have lived before her and her brothers?

Is your marriage one that your children want to emulate and long to replicate? How have you treated their mother? How have you treated the girls and women in your life? What is the record of your private life? Have you kept moral sin out of your life? Have you been a blessing to the world around you no matter the cost to you?

Is your life consistent with the image you portray? What about your thought life? Do you reject the wicked thoughts that Satan sends your way? Can you say that you seek first the Kingdom of God and then allow Him to add to your life what He sees best?

Are you willing to suffer as a man of God and be gossiped about and falsely accused and threatened and still be willing to stand strong and alone with Jesus? Are you willing to be part of an army of Godly men who are not for sale at any price? Are you? You can be.

Are you available to people who need you and who need what you have to offer? Can you be available, never expecting to be paid back in this life? Or, have you put business and farming and work and prosperity and pleasure ahead of what is eternal?

Are you committed to total honesty and integrity in life and dealings? That is the call of our Heavenly Father. He is the audience-of-One in your life. You are not playing to the crowd. You are either living for Heaven’s audience or you are wasting your life.

As we all know, Adam failed the test.
As we all know, Jesus was victorious over testing and temptation.
He passed the test.
Is Eve controlling you? Is Jezebel controlling you?

When Eve is overcome by temptation, it is your responsibility as a man to call her back to the Word of God.
When Jezebel is killing God’s prophets, It is your responsibility to not bow to the prophets of Baal.
If you are Ahab, you will bow to the wiles of Jezebel.
You are not Ahab. You are a follower of Jesus and are responsible to stand against wrong and for the Word of God.

Not all women are Eve. Not all women are Jezebel. Eve and Jezebel both needed genuine, corrective love before and while they were living in disobedience. They did not need a silent Adam. They did not need an immature Ahab. Men, we need to be strong enough to bring that bold love to the women and girls in our lives and we need to be ready to die, if need be, in the process.

There are many wonderful women in our lives. We can and should learn from them. No matter who they are, we are called to be Jesus to them and call them to God with the love and grace that God has shown to us as His representatives.

Men, where are you? Employ and appreciate the gifts of the Godly women in your life but never forget that you are called to be God’s representative here on this earth. You are responsible for your home and your children.

We are inundated by hundreds of daughters and sons who are reeling from the lack of your fathering because you have abdicated your role of leadership in the home. Passive men and aggressive women are the scourge of Anabaptist culture. It is a growing and destructive sin and our children are paying the price – a price we cannot afford.

Another price is your wives. They are paying the price for your passivity in the home. They know that you are a good worker and a good farmer or businessman. But, when you come home, you check out. You are tired and unwilling to engage the family so your wife has to continue to be the ‘man’ of the house. You know this is wrong and she knows it also and so do your children.

This sets the stage for your sons to follow your path and for your daughters to expect all men to be like you and for your wife to disrespect you for your lack of intentional involvement and Spiritual leadership.

Men, where are you? Show up. It is time. It is past time. If you need to make amends, make them – to your wife and children and if need be to the church and where ever else you have done wrong. If you are caught in addictions, seek help. God has the answers. God is waiting for you to be His totally committed disciple. God is waiting for you to become His channel of grace and mercy and truth.

Men, speak and live truth and love. Live truth with love. Bring God and His Word to every situation with words and example. You can do it. That is why God put you here.

Bury yourself – the old man- in the love of the truth of the Word of God and the Holy Spirit of God will cleanse you and make you clean and you will rise to new life and joy and peace that comes only from God and your obedience to Him. Find your joy and pleasure in pleasing your Father God.

II Timothy 1:7 – God has not given us the spirit of fear, but He has given us (His Holy Spirit of): 1. Power 2. Love and 3.Clear thinking.

Adam came full of innocence and he disobeyed His God. Jesus came full of grace and truth and He obeyed His Father. It is our turn now. It is either Adam, who capitulated to his wife or Jesus who died for His bride – which will you choose?

God’s power, love, and clear thinking are available to you. Will you rise to His call or will you passively allow your life and your home to fall prey to the current culture? God is calling us to be real men. Stand up and be counted as one of the real men of God in this present evil world. God is calling. You can do it.

It is your decision.

Spiritual Battle


Dear Adam – ‘Do Not Give Your Strength To Women’
Or to anyone but God

Adam why were you silent?
Eve was speaking when she should have been silent
Adam – you were silent when you should have been speaking

God gave you an assignment and you did not see it through.
God made you out of earth’s substance.
God breathed the breath of life into you.
God created you in His own image
God placed you in His beautiful, perfect garden.

God gave you the task of naming the animals.
He gave you dominion over His creation.
He gave you a perfect wife.
She was taken from your side.
Together you were the image of your Creator
He told you how He wanted you to live.
You told Eve how God wanted both of you to live.

When she was confronted and tempted by one of the creatures
You were there.
When she was attracted to the beauty and possibility of the fruit.
You were there.
When she broke God’s law by eating the fruit.
You were there.
When she broke God’s law.
You were there.

You were supposed to take charge of the situation.
You supposed to bring God’s Word to bear on the incident.
You should have told Eve to stay there until you did what you needed to do.
You should have taken Eve to God to confess and repent and restore.

But first, you had some business to do.
You did not do it.
You should have confronted the serpent.
You should have told the serpent in no-uncertain-terms…
Stay away from my wife!
If I find you in this garden again, it will not go well for you!
God gave me a task to do and I am going to see it through.
You better run when you see me
Because I take God and His Word seriously.
I am God’s representative here in His garden.
You do not have my permission to be here.
Do you understand that?
What do you not understand about that?

Serpent, God made you.
I named you.
God made me the keeper of His creation.
You are responsible to God and to me.
Do you understand that?
What do you not understand about that?”

Adam should have put the fear of God into the serpent.
From that day on, the serpent would have feared Adam.
The serpent would know that God and Adam were working together.
So when the serpent would see or hear Adam in the garden
He would run and hide.
Adam should have put the fear of God into the serpent’s heart and life.
The serpent would have feared Adam. And he rightly should have.

From there, Adam should have taken Eve to God
And confessed.
And repented.
And restored.

Adam should have accepted his place in God’s garden.
Adam should have accepted his place in God’s plan.
Adam should have accepted his responsibility for the creation.
Adam should have accepted his responsibility to God.
Adam should have accepted his responsibility for Eve.
That was the charge on his life.
And so, life could have been wonderful.

You set the pattern for us to follow.
You did not do what you knew God wanted you to do.
You did not take responsibility for life.
You did not do what we needed you to do.
You showed us men how not to bless the women in our lives.
You showed us how not to direct the women in our lives to God.
You showed us how not to be Godly men for the women.
Shame Adam, for not putting the Devil on the defensive.
Shame Adam, for showing us men how to give place to the Devil.

Shame for not establishing our place in the spirit world.
Shame for not showing us how to live in victory.
Shame for not being the role model we needed.
Shame for not giving us a pattern for faithfulness to God.
Shame Adam. You should hang your head in shame.
God placed you outside the garden.
God placed the flaming sword at the gates of the garden.

We do not have to follow you
We cannot afford to follow you
Another Adam came
The second Adam
The last Adam
The Adam who resisted the devil
The Adam who loved and died and rose again
The Adam who loved His bride so much that He died for her
The Adam who valued and obeyed the Word of God
The Adam who said, ‘No’ to the devil
The Adam who gives us right to the Tree of life
In the midst of the Garden of God
The Adam who is the example for all of us.

He that hath an ear, let him hear
What the Spirit says unto the churches;
To him that overcomes
Will I give to eat of the tree of life,
Which is in the midst of the paradise of God.
Revelation 2:7

Real Men


I have known real men in my life.
What is a real man?

Real men are men of God.
Real men are men of the Word of God.
Real men love the truth.
Real men tell the truth.
Real men speak the truth.
Real men live the truth.
Real men do not exploit anyone.
Real men do not take advantage of anyone.
Real men are not politicians.
Real men treat all persons with respect.
Real men confront sin.
Real men can not be bullied by bullies who are rich and or powerful or ….
Real men do not tolerate bullies.
Real men do not tolerate bullies bullying others.
Real men do what is right no matter what.
Real men defend women.
Real men defend children.
Real men feel the pain of people who are hurting.
Real men comfort those who are hurting.
Real men take time to teach and instruct.
Real men encourage others.
Real men go out of their way to be a blessing to everyone.
Real men are men of absolute integrity.
Real men are men of courage.
Real men can neither be bought nor sold.
Real men have anger against sin and wrong.
Real men read, believe, and follow the Bible.
Real men understand real love.
Real men know the difference between love and lust.
Real men appreciate beauty without lusting and coveting.
Real men do not allow pornography in their lives.
Real men do not think immoral or improper thoughts about girls and women.
Real men do not laugh at risqué jokes.
Real men do not laugh at crude jokes.
Real men do not think that fools are funny.
Real men do not compromise.
Real men are not two faced.
Real men live in absolute fidelity to wife and family.
Real men blend heart and mind in thinking and decision making.
Real men put others ahead of their own comfort.
Real men are safe – they will look out for you and never threaten you.
Real men are not threatened when someone does better than they do.
Real men fear God and not man.
Real men fear to do wrong.
Real men protect the powerless.
Real men put others ahead of self.
Real men live for eternal values.
Real men are servants.
Real men follow Jesus.
Real men stand alone.
Real men do not fit in this world.
Real men are made for another world.
Honor the real men in your life.
They are worthy of your love and care.
They truly love and care for you.

Men Women and Children


So, since men are not willing to be men, women cannot afford to be women. Women have to assume a masculine role and take control of each situation. That is what the men are supposed to be doing but, many times, they are not. So, since men are not men, women have to become men.

The women therefore lose their femininity and men, in turn, lose (actually forfeit by default) their masculinity. So, neither functions in their God-intended role. As a result they each lose their God-intended identity and no longer know who they are. So, with both identities lost (men do not know who they are and women do not know who they are) the situation gets worse – they no longer know who the other is either – (men do not know who the women are [since the women are acting out of character] and the women do not know who the men are [since the men are also acting out of character]).

What must God think when He sees all this? So, who usually goes for help in situations we know about? Is it the men or is it the women? Almost without exception it is the women – so, at all stages, they are still required to assume responsibility.

This is not God’s plan. God made Adam to care for His creation. God made Eve to be Adam’s helper. When they and we work together, life works. When we do not, it does not. Life can work and be a joy for all involved in family life.

Children raised in healthy family are healthy children who grow up to raise healthy children. Men being men and women being women means that children can be children. Each in the role that God has cast and living the life that God has chosen. That is God’s plan.

Where From Here?


The plain churches are an amazing culture. Our culture is struggling for survival.
Here are some observations for you to contemplate and consider and perhaps address.

  1. Family
    Men/Fathers – so many are not really leaders. So many are caught in materialism and sexual sins.
    Women/mothers – so many are controllers because Dad is not taking his place in the home.
    Children – so many are confused about roles in the home and turning to wrong coping methods.
  2. Pornography
    This is killing us. While talking with boys and men over the years, including recently – sometimes 100% of them are engaging with porn
    Now it is girls – young girls are accessing porn – the destruction is incalculable.
    Dating – youth not willing to date – fear to engage with another person because of poor role models and fear of recreating their home of origin.
    Sexual abuse is a result of lack of self-control and integrity.
  3. Counseling
    Has become an industry among us. Too much of the advice is neither Biblical nor useful.
    Why are so many of us not able to deal with life?
  4. Meds
    What percentage of our people are on meds for anxiety or depression? It is high.
  5. Holy Spirit
    My opinion is that this is the most neglected study and experience among us.
    Michael Sattler- 1527 wrote – “Two Types of Obedience” either law or love.
    J.C. Wenger – 1951 – “Separated Unto God” – will keep us separate from the world.
  6. Fragmentation
    Ever since the OO divisions of the late 1800s and especially the divisions since 1950 we are in a state of fragmentation.
    Youth are struggling to process this.
  7. Evangelicalism
    This modern wave of Fundamentalism is attracting our people and it is an easy sell with its free grace that does not require personal discipline.
    Separating sanctification from justification is attractive but not Biblical.

I am now an old man of 76 years. My energies no longer allow me to pursue life and teaching as diligently as in the past.
It would seem ideal if we could have a new “Schleitheim conference.” ,
Where are the men who could and would do that?

We need God’s blessings as we continue to search the mind of the Spirit to know what God’s people are to do.

We have made choices that have facilitated our move to where we are now.
The purity culture – policy vs. principle – proscription or prescription – loyalty or integrity – virtue signaling, etc. have replaced Holy Spirit living.

Our move from integrity to loyalty – left us in epistemological limbo. In-other-words, we lost our way to find truth. That was our ‘original sin’ – it replaced the power of God with your own ability to fight and places us at the mercy of your own capacity to defeat the Devil. The self-control of the Holy Spirit is so very different. Self-control is the fruit of the Holy Spirit; not the production of ‘white-knuckle’ living. Tell the truth and live with love and beauty. Appreciate and enjoy the beauty of God’s human creation without allowing lust to destroy what God has made.
This allowed for virtue signaling. As long as the signals and symbols of virtue are present, virtue itself, can be totally absent. Virtue signals provide an ideal screen behind which to live to the flesh.

This can change.
This must change.
This must change if we are to survive.
It is time for a revival.

Together, Lois and I have invested more than 40 years in Mennonite education. If we had to do it again we would do it again. We are committed Anabaptists.
We have attempted to learn Bible and Anabaptist history to be able to communicate that to you and your children via the Mennonite education system.

Thanks for listening,
Frank L. Reed

About Knowing or Knowing About


About Knowing or Knowing About

Knowing and studying theology is how to know about God

Knowing and obeying the Bible is how to know God

Kevin Mark – 2023


We all leave a legacy, You left a legacy.

You were a son
You had a mother
You had a father
You had a sister
You had two brothers
You had grandparents
You were loved by your family
You did well in school
You were interested in God
You were interested in Church history
You were responsible around the farm.
You had friends at school and at church
You left many memories
You made good choices in your short years
You joined family members who went to Heaven before you

These are your legacy
They are a reminder that we can live well
Even if we do not live long
We can make good choices like you did
We can apply our lives to doing good
We can apply our lives by doing well
We can use the years God gives us
We can bless our families and friends
We can leave a legacy of goodness
For those who come behind us to observe
And to follow
You lived well
We honor you as our son, brother, grandson, nephew and friend
And, Someday, in God’s good time,
We will meet again