It was late November of 96 and we were packing up to move north for our first full-time ministry after returning from the mission field. The process included securing a moving truck and car trailer in tow. I had never driven anything as big as this truck before and I was a bit concerned, especially with the car trailer attached. My dad never taught me how to handle anything this big before when I was a kid. Actually, he had never really encouraged me that I could do anything bigger than my present reality.
But my friend Todd, who is now a Bible Translator in Papua New Guinea, was with me as we made the final connections for the tail lights. We wiped our hands off and took a deep breath from a job well done. Then, after another deep breath, I said, “Todd, you know, I’ve never really driven anything this big before and honestly I’m a bit afraid that I’m going to wreck it or something.” Todd just looked at me and nodded his head once with a small smile. I went on, “but I guess I just need to be a man about it and push forward.” Again, Todd just gave a small smile and quick nod and only offered the one-word response of, “yup.”
That’s really all there was to it from then on out. We prayed, asking for God’s help. I then shook Todd’s hand, thanked him, and then climbed into the cab and took off. But that’s what I needed. I needed another guy just to tell me that I was a man and that I could do it. (more…)
What does maturity and manhood really look like? According to Skyler Wilder who writes for NBCOlympics.com; it looks like David Wise who tore up the half pipe free-style ski event for a gold medal this past Tuesday. In Wilder’s post David is shown to be a great young and mature man who is even thinking about possibly being a pastor some day. I was thrilled to see such credit given to a young man of God. The interesting thing about the post was the number of times Wilder referenced David’s maturity and actually called it an alternative lifestyle. While the immediate context probably is a contrast of David to the other “dudes” who rip up the slopes with more power than I could ever muster, it does raise a question of what manhood really looks like in America and the Post-Modern West. The sad reality is that a young man in his early 20s who is already married and a father with a life focus used to be called normal in western culture. Such is not always the case today. In fact, Kay Hymowitz ran a report in the WSJ a few years ago that simply posed the question; “Where Have the Good Men Gone?” In her article Hymowitz observes that the Western culture is undergoing a phenomina of drop out men of enormous proportions. The truth of the matter is that countless boys and young men in America are clueless as to what exactly it means to be a man. So many of them are lost with nowhere to go and little reason to get there. What does it really mean to be a man anymore?
Are there answers? Does God have anything to say on the issue? Does it even matter? To dive into those questions and more, be sure to join us tonight at 8p Central as we talk with Steve Spicer, co-founder of Marked Men for Christ, and our other guests about manhood and maturity. As always, if you are using Google + you can find the SND page and send in live questions during the show. We will also be checking for questions or comments left here or on our SND Facebook page.
See you soon.
Russian IWD Poster.
Today is International Women’s Day which is a big thing in parts of the world like Europe. The first time I heard about this celebration was when Deb and I lived in Russia back in the mid 90s where IWD is a huge deal. The roots of this movement began in the early 1900s on the heels of the industrial revolution where women experienced great oppression and unfairness. In 1908, some 15,000 women marched through New York City demanding shorter hours, better pay, and voting rights. This movement continued in other countries and the first official day of celebration was held in Austria in 1911 and followed in the US with the 19th Amendment in 1920. On this day of celebration I’m remembering some influential ladies in my life and am thankful for them, but I’m also a bit saddened at the agenda of the modern feminist movement. Is this because I’m opposed to women’s suffrage and really am a chauvinist at heart? No. Rather, it’s because I am totally for women and sense that what has arisen out of this healthy and right call for equality has now morphed into a recipe for tears. The problem that many may not grasp is the mistake of equating equality for sameness and thus a drive to purposefully remove any difference between the genders. (more…)