First Men – Being Real
First Men is all the men of our church … all ages and all places in life. If you are a member of First Church and are a man, you are a First Man. First Men has no dues, membership or required attendance.
The purpose of First Men is to gather the strength, talents and passions of the men of First Church to support the efforts of our church and pastors, to grow in faith together, to encourage others and to serve others in various ways. Our goal is to become better men, husbands, fathers and sons.
“Being Real” is a challenging slogan to us men and we don’t take it lightly. Our goal is to build authentic friendships and to treat each other with respect as we grow spiritually. We aim to put aside all our preoccupations about how important we are, and about the importance of our jobs, money, status and success, and to search for life’s deeper meaning.
Men today are besieged by everything – work, family, household, finances, society’s norms. First Men provides a place for men to stay grounded and to help ourselves and to help encourage other men to grow. Maybe you are a man who has never attended a Bible study, or maybe you have many years in deep faith but are looking for something more … Contact the First Men leadership at FirstMen@FirstChurchOrlando.org or call Chris Meyer at 407.466.2411 or Jeff Chandler at 407.443.2437 to learn more.
Current Weekly Opportunities
Studies have shown that men need various spiritual disciplines to develop a fulfilling life:
- active church involvement
- an organized Bible study
- a small group
- consistent quiet time (reading the Bible, meditation, etc.)
- service/mission trips
First Men is a group of men trying to fill their lives with these spiritual disciplines. We
currently have three weekly groups that are available to all men:
Wednesdays, 7:30 a.m. – 8:30 a.m.
15 to 20 men meet for an organized Bible study led by several weekly facilitators and occasional guest speakers. Coffee and breakfast snacks available.
Sundays, 4:30 p.m. – 6 p.m.
Small group of four to six men that meet for Christian fellowship and Bible study/discussion based on current sermons.
Thursdays, noon – 1 p.m.
Small group of six to eight men that meet for Christian fellowship and encouragement along with various short-term book studies/discussion series. Bring your own lunch.
On behalf of First Men, we invite you to come and visit any or all of these weekly meetings, and
- No, you don’t have to know much about the Bible to attend
- No, we won’t ask you to stand up and say something
- No, you don’t have to attend every week
- Yes, you can just come once to try it out
- Yes, each week we try to show how the Bible is relevant to your daily life as a man
A free karate class is offered by First Man (and Third Degree black belt) John Darin. All are welcome (including women and children). Loose clothing or gi is recommended.
Everyone is welcome to give karate a try to determine if they like it. The classes develop mind, body and spirit in a Christian environment. Class meets on Wednesdays, from 7 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. For more details contact John Darin at 407.451.3150.
Fresh Start Ministry for Men
Fresh Start is a ministry supported by many churches and other organizations to provide and serve dinner to a group of men at the Christian Service Center. FirstChurch provides dinner on the 17th of each month. Various First Men groups and Sunday school classes step up to provide volunteers each month. Contact First Man Rick Crouch for information on how to help serve.
Previous First Men Experienes
- Seven Seasons of a Man’s Life seminar by man in the Mirror
- Success That Matters seminar by Man in the Mirror
- Marriage Prayer seminar for couples and follow-up small groups
- Movie outings: Courageous and 7 Days in Utopia
- Bowling night and dinner with MOPS (Mothers of Pre-Schoolers)
- Breakfast with the Pastors
- Easter Cross yard sign giveaway
- United Methodist Men retreats in Leesburg
- Dwight Bain speaker events: Difficult Times and Life’s Transitions
- Free book giveaways on Mother’s and Father’s Day
- Rough Cut Men movie experience
- Pancake Breakfast to benefit the Zion Children’s Home in the Bahamas
- Pancake Breakfast with MOPS to benefit our Children’s Ministry
- Church-wide BBQ for new building groundbreaking
- Paint houses for Seniors First
- Paintball with the youth
TestimonialsAfter hearing about this group from a good friend of mine I decided to try a Wednesday morning meeting. There were guys of all ages and backgrounds and I was immediately impressed with how open and inviting everyone was. I really enjoyed the discussion and started attending on a more regular basis. The friendships fostered in these groups is unreal. You truly get beyond the surface and really share what’s needed and not just what’s nice. After almost 2 years participating with First Men I can’t imagine what life was like without these relationships or the very important Ministry at First Church.
First Men is a support group and mid-week spiritual rejuvenation for me.
As a husband, father, businessman, and a Christian (wrong order I know) trying to live a life that encourages and nurtures others, First Men helps me stay accountable. First Men provides me a supportive small group that cares for each other and helps each of us by sharing wisdom we can use in our daily lives. In our church we need this group of men to continue to step up and be a strong leadership example and the helping caring hands as needs are identified in our church and community.
Our First Men group is very different than a Sunday service, yet very essential to my week. Half education, half support group, half lively discussion, it provides another necessary weekly reminder of how God works in our lives through others. Our group of Men holds each other to a measure of accountability that is essential to life in today’s fast-paced world.
I’m excited about First Men. The concept of bringing men together to discuss life experiences in total confidentiality to me is refreshing in itself. Using scripture as a guide, in my opinion sets the stage for us to share what is on our mind and heavy in our hearts. Every time we meet I learn something courageous and wise from them. I always look forward to our weekly gatherings because I see these men as more than just a diverse group of regular guys. They are intelligent men with leadership skills who aren’t shy about bringing other men to Christ. From what I observe I know God wants to change the world through the men in our church because it is happening right now.
First Men has provided me with a place among men where my quest to become an ever stronger Christian is not only okay, but celebrated. My efforts are strengthened and buoyed by the instruction, opinions, life lessons and personal support from individuals within this group.
”Very simply, First Men changed my life. I had always been very successful at work, but I was essentially “sleepwalking” through the rest of my life. I had no active spiritual life and I was slowly losing my wife and family, mostly due to my own selfishness. This is where First Men started to change my life. I started attending our church’s men’s Bible study on Wednesdays before I went to work. It had a “grounding” effect on me. I was amazed how much scripture could be applied to my life! It rapidly became an important part of my week. I developed friendships with guys of all ages, we talked about issues that affected us, and I learned that I wasn’t the only one having some of these problems. The changes in my life are too great to count. My life has meaningful purpose now. I am thankful that the problems in my marriage led me down this path. I can only hope that First Men can help other men grow in their spiritual lives and help with any problems, big or small, that they may face, now or in the future. I know it will continue to help me. Every week we study and discuss what I need to use through the week. Somehow the lesson is always exactly what I need.
First Men has helped me by providing fellowship with men that are trying to become better in their faith and relationship with God. It appeals to me because these men are trying to have better relationships with their wives, children, family and friends. The men in these small groups provide acceptance without judgment. It provides me with direction in my life by reading and discussing the messages found in the bible, in a context relevant to men. I enjoy hearing the perspectives of the guys, how they struggle and succeed in their lives. It has helped me in my own journey through life.
While my life seems extremely busy right now, I always find time for my First Men Bible Study on Wednesday mornings. That short time I spend with other men trying to cope with life’s everyday challenges helps me maintain my focus on what real life is all about, that of serving God first and finding out what that means when life is tugging me in lots of different directions. I have learned that all men struggle in many ways and attempts at solving their struggles help me with mine. But, also men like to have fun and love to eat, something First Men are very good at, especially when life sometimes takes the fun out of our lives and ruins our appetites for real soul food. I am blessed because of First Men and am a better disciple of Christ because of the honesty, love and exposure I experience at our gatherings.
First Men is a place where men of all ages come to share our joys, our sorrows, our fears and our hopes. We have a solid foundation based on Jesus Christ and His teachings. We are trying to follow His example and love and serve others as He did. We know we’re not perfect…we’re flawed and we’re sinners like everyone else. We know we need His grace.