Can God Use a Man Like Me?

Change the man and everything changes.

But what starts that change? For some, it starts with a question:  “Can God Use a Man Like Me?” Noble Warriors exists to help answer this question.

Most Bible-believing men have probably asked this question in their lifetime. Brian Dalrymple is no exception. A member of Next Step Church in Aylett, Virginia and a believer for many years, Brian questions his own role in the body of Christ, specifically in leadership.

You see, Brian doesn’t feel like the “leader type.” That role seems better suited for his wife Janey, who Brian claims can “build a Bible study from the ground up.” She is a natural teacher. Brian is not. She leads Bible studies. Brian participates, but had never led. He describes it as being “the tool in the toolbox that sits at the bottom of the box, but never gets used.” 

Brian wonders if there was any tangible fruit in his own Christian walk. While he loves supporting Janey and her calling, is he supposed to be doing more?

Was God going to use him outside of supporting his wife? Will God actually use him?

Maybe you feel like Brian too.

It wasn’t until Fall of 2016 when Brian was asked to help facilitate a men’s Bible study, did he take on any form of leadership. The men went through two studies, one that Fall, then another at the beginning of 2017. Having only been a participant in the past, it was the first time Brian found himself not just being present, but actively serving in the group. He gained a better understanding of the difficulties men face and quickly developed a heart for the guys in his group.

After several weeks of a thriving study, the group session was over with a sixth month period before the next study began. The men were in limbo. A few guys approached Brian and expressed that they wanted to keep meeting, but no one was exactly sure how to move forward, including Brian.

A few weeks later, Brian, Janey, and a few friends from church found themselves at a Casting Crowns concert. The tour was titled “The Very Next Thing” and lead singer Mark Hall took the time to explain the meaning behind the title. Listening intently, Brian took Mark’s message to heart as he described an “ambitious desire to be attentive to God’s voice and to have a heart that was open and obedient to do whatever God called him to do next.”

Mark’s words lit a fire in him and Brian sat in his seat praying for the same.

“I found myself praying and asking God to give me a heart that would trust Him and be obedient with the very next thing the Lord placed in front of me.”

Little did Brian know, he was going to find out what that very next thing was during the Richmond Iron Sharpens Iron Conference… 

Ignite the Change by partnering with us. It starts with you.

His Very Next Thing

Change is a process, but sometimes that change progresses quicker than we expect.

Brian Dalrymple didn’t know it, but God was about to ignite something in him that will impact many others.

Brian wrestled with how the Lord was going to use a man like him when he frankly didn’t feel like a leader at all. But then everything started to change… After attending the Casting Crowns concert titled “The Very Next Thing”, Brian began to pray that the Lord would help him find what “the very next thing” was for his life.

Two days later we find Brian at the 2017 Iron Sharpen Iron Conference in Richmond, with Mark Hall’s message fresh on his mind. Brian is no stranger to the conference, having attended in 2014 and 2015. The one-day event consists of two main sessions led by powerful speakers, masculine worship, and equipping workshops on topics specific to men.

This conference quickly proves different from the rest when Brian notices a familiar face on stage during the main session. Brian recognizes Joe, a colleague of his, is on stage with the worship team that morning. Brian makes a point to find him after the main session.

Little did Brian know Joe was actually praying specifically for him that day.

The night before each Iron Sharpens Iron Conference, the volunteers and leaders are given a prayer card with several names of conference attendees. The card Joe received had Brian’s name on it. Joe shares that he knew there couldn’t be another Brian Dalrymple and he was praying they would be able to connect at the conference.

Now with Mark Hall’s message and Joe’s words in mind, Brian attends a Leading Men’s Ministry workshop lead by Noble Warriors director, Mike Young.  He sat in Mike’s session and learned about strategies for men’s ministry. Brian, immediately hooked, began learning how to build a fruitful men’s ministry.

“You gotta reach out and get the guys first with some kind of outreach ministry, something that will bring them in, guys from all over, then transition that into some sort of Bible based study, but the true core of men’s ministry is in these little small groups that meet, that continue to meet whether it’s weekly, bi-weekly.”

Again, Brian felt that spark.  “That was the very next thing. That was that thing Mark Hall was talking about.”

The fuse was lit and Brian knew this was his “very next thing.” He was being called to start a men’s ministry and he needed to start meeting with the men of his church again.

But where to start? Brian was going to find out.

Ignite the Change by partnering with us. It starts with you.

Chicken & Biscuits Raw Bible Study

From a Casting Crowns concert, to an Iron Sharpens Iron Conference, to a Leading Men’s Ministry equipping workshop, Brian Dalrymple finally had his answer.

After Mike Young outlined a strategic process for discipling men in his men’s ministry leadership workshop, Brian knew this was his “very next thing.”

Brian felt the Lord calling him to lead a men’s small group. The voice he wanted to be attentive to was clear. The only problem was he wasn’t sure where to start. He had just learned about the strategy of a healthy men’s ministry, but actually starting that fire was more difficult than simply talking about it.

“I hashed it around for about a week thinking ‘Do I hand pick these guys to meet with?’ But eventually, I thought of about four or five guys in that group who didn’t want to stop meeting.”

Brian approached the men individually and told them he believed they were being called to get together. The men were excited about gathering, but finding a time to meet was hard. All of the men are involved in church activities, work, have families, and get home late.

They decided to wake up a few minutes early and meet at an unlikely location: a Bojangles. No man can resist chicken and Bo-Berry Biscuits®! Brian and his group meet at 6:00 a.m. every Tuesday. The group was consistent and began meeting every Tuesday, but they were still unsure of where to begin. That’s when Brian decided to call Mike Young, director of Noble Warriors.

“I called Mike and talked to him about it. He recommended Point Man by Steve Farrar.”

Brian lead the group through the book for several weeks. The men were really digging into the study and Brian saw the change taking place in the hearts of his guys as well as himself. Maybe he was a leader after all?

Before they knew it, the study was over and once again, they weren’t sure where to go. Brian gave Mike another call and then met with him at the Noble Warriors office to discuss moving forward.

“Mike really encouraged me. That’s what Noble Warriors is there to do. Not to go out and get the men, but to support the little guy like me, and that’s what they did. He supported me, encouraged me, and pointed me to some studies. He gave me the tools to help me move forward.”

From there, the men dove into the book of James. They read it as a group out loud, talked about it, and gleaned truth from each section they read. They have since transitioned to the book of John and are chipping away chapter by chapter no matter how long it takes them. Brian says leading a group isn’t without it’s difficulties, because life happens. People get sick, work-related things come up, but Brian has still seen the Lord’s faithfulness even when some mornings don’t go as planned. This is exactly why men get together regularly and do things this way.

“The other day only one guy showed up. I wondered if I should just cancel and I was a little discouraged, but I was able to have a great one-on-one with this guy. We didn’t skip the lesson and I was able to have an hour with him and see how the Lord was working in his life.”

Brian is still learning what works for his group and still can’t believe the Lord is using him in this way. He’s learning to be adaptable and accessible to the men in his group. And overall, he’s thankful.

He had be wrestling for so long with whether he could even lead, and now he has hindsight to see how the Lord had been preparing him and equipping him this whole time.

“It’s been good for me. All the things I told myself, ‘I don’t have these gifts,’ ‘I’m not my wife,’ but God is giving me these gifts. I can’t take any credit for that.”

Check out A Point Man Legacy to learn how Steve Farrar’s book has influenced Mike Young and the ministry.

Partners of Noble Warriors helped ignite this change in Brian. YOU can ignite the next man. Partner with us.

Change the Man and Everything Changes

If you’ve been following the story of Brian Dalrymple the past several weeks, you have read how he went from unsure of his role in the body of Christ, to a small group leader of men, a discipler, a 2 Timothy 2:2 man. He’s been leading a small group at Bojangles for the past few months and he’s still blown away at what the Lord has done and the change in his life and theirs.

Friends of Brian are also seeing the change. Dave Anderson, a good friend of Noble Warriors and the Men’s Ministry Director of Brian’s congregation at Next Step Church, says the change in Brian is evident.

“Brian has developed a passion to connect with other men… he used to be reserved and quiet and now he regularly engages other men in the church. Brian is not afraid to reach out for advice and guidance on how to disciple with other men.”

Maybe you’re feeling like Brian.

You want to do the very next thing. You want to be attentive to the Holy Spirit. But, it’s easy to read about someone else and see how God has been working Maybe you’re thinking you want to lead, but you aren’t sure how to start. When asked how he would encourage other men Brian had this to say:

“I would encourage them to listen to the call and not to listen to the voices of Satan that are trying to discourage you.”

Brian states that this is a weekly struggle for him.

“It usually starts sometimes Sunday after church, I think: ‘48 hours from now, you’ll be sitting in front of those guys, you’re not equipped to do this.’ I’m beat up by Tuesday. It’s hard to roll into Bojangles, but after we walk out of the study I’m always blown away by how God worked. The lies were just that. They were lies.”

Brian also sought advice from Noble Warriors director, Mike Young, who had some practical ground rules to help jump start your men’s small group. He says to remember that there are no experts in your group, which includes you. Everyone who is meeting is meeting to learn and grow as a follower of Christ. Also, expect someone to say something ridiculous, and act with a sense of grace and mercy when those moments arise.

Change the man and everything changes.

That’s what Brian Dalrymple discovered. Maybe it’s your turn to ignore the lies, and change the man in you.

Light the fuse.

Be attentive to the call and discover what the very next thing is in your walk.

Ignite the Change by partnering with us. It starts with you.