You don’t like to ask questions do you? No, neither do I. Asking a question is humbling because it’s saying, “You know something I don’t know and I need you to help me out.”
There are two phrases at the root of this which guys do not like to say: “I don’t know,” and, “I need your help.” And then of course there’s the difficulty of saying “Thank you,” when someone does help us out with an answer. We’d prefer to go on in ignorance and error wouldn’t we! Better make a mistake than ask a question or ask for advice!
We need to learn to ask questions. Who should we ask questions of?
We should ask God questions first, of course. Lord, what do you want me to do? Who do you want me to marry? Should I spend my money on this? Is this the right company to work for? How do I resolve this conflict? How can I manage my money better? How can I beat this temptation? How do I handle this person?
Commune with God, bring all your questions to him. Wait in his presence. Sometimes he will make it really clear to you in prayer. Other times, he will guide you through his Word, and other times he will answer you in his providence or through people, especially God’s people. Be patient, God does not answer all our questions immediately.
Ask your Dad
Contrary to what one journalist claimed, YouTube is not your father. Your Dad is. Ask him questions, especially if he is a godly man.
Ask your Pastor
If it’s a spiritual question, ask your pastor. Remember, your pastor is not a mere agony aunt, but a pastor to shepherd your soul—so ask him spiritual questions. Shoot him an email with your questions, and tell him, “There’s no rush to answer, just when you can?”
Ask other Men
Ask other men whom you respect as mature, godly, wise, and experienced. Build a relationship with an elder in your church and get his input in different areas of life. Some people call this mentoring. I call it common sense.
If it’s a studies, career, or business question, get input from experts in the field. Yes, you can do that online, but better to do it face-to-face. Ask for a brief appointment with your professor, with a businessman, with someone who has proven himself in a career. It does not necessarily have to be a Christian. God has put a lot of wisdom in the world.
Ask some of the senior ladies in your congregation. Some of these mature Christian ladies are wiser than Socrates. They may look old and frail but they’ve been round the block and know much more than you ever will.
Notice, young men, I have not yet listed your buddies, your friends. That’s because most of them have not yet been proven or tested. It’s like a baby asking other babies for advice on how to walk. Or, as Jesus said, the blind leading the blind and both fall into the ditch.
Check all the answers you get with Scripture. No matter who gave you an answer, if it’s against Scripture it’s the wrong answer.
Don’t reject any answer just because it goes against your wishes. In fact, you should probably listen to that answer very carefully.
The wisest people I’ve ever met have been good questioners. And they never stop asking questions, even when old and gray. And if you ask enough questions, you’ll eventually gain so much knowledge and wisdom that people will actually start asking you questions, and you will actually have something sensible to say.
Real men ask questions.
1. What stops you from asking questions when you don’t know or are uncertain about what to do?
2. Who are your “go-to” people that you ask different types of questions of?
3. What do you look for in a person that you would ask questions of?
4. How would you develop these characteristics?