“I am about to go the way of all the earth,” he said. “So be strong, act like a man….”
1 Kings 2:2 (NIV)
Over this past weekend Wendy and I enjoyed deep conversation with our friends. While the discussion ran the gamut from soup to nuts, there was definitely a recurring theme around families and relationships. As conversation meandered through hours of conversation, I noticed a recurring theme of men who had been the source of pain in their marriages and families:
- The man who lives life to eat, drink, and be merry, but refuses to go deep with his friends, his wife, or his children.
- The man who is relationally A.W.O.L. while physically present.
- The man who twists and contorts the Biblical concept of submission into self-centered justification for being an ass to his wife and family.
- The man who acts like a selfish child when his wife and children need him to step up and be a man.
- The man who simply chooses out of relationship.
- The man who caused generations of trouble by refusing to accept an adopted granddaughter as his own.
- The man who simply walked away at conception.
This morning as I read David’s charge to Solomon to “be strong, act like a man” I was reminded of all of these personal illustrations from the weekend. It saddens me the soul wounds inflicted by men who don’t have a clue what it means to be a man. It saddens me that our culture seems to have, by-and-large, lost the art of raising boys into manhood.
Today, I am praying for the boys and young men who are in my spheres of influence. I am praying for my role as a friend, a mentor, a role model and a guide.