My fellow men, may I be perfectly frank? It's time to man up and grow up! There is a pandemic in this country of males with adult bodies afflicted with children's minds and spirits. We have too many men who are suffering from the negative effects of a long-extended adolescence. Indeed, not only are they suffering, but these negative effects are being passed on to their families and causing their wives and children to suffer! This should not be! We have been called to something greater! In 1 Corinthians 13, the Apostle Paul tells us, "When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me." This is our mark, men! This is God's calling for us!
I'm starting down the road of calling out the man in my son, but you know, I could only do so after putting my own childish ways behind me. How could I ever lead him to manhood before I embraced it for and in myself? It would have been the blind leading the blind! Such a foolish endeavor would undoubtedly end only in damaging him, me, and our relationship.
To my shame, I failed to embrace Godly manhood for far, far too long. I desperately held on to my childish ways and my childish things well beyond the point I should have let them go. From choices of entertainment to attitude and behaviors, I was mired down, living for myself, and refusing to grow. Thankfully, the Lord showed me there was a better way and a better purpose for my life. It wasn't an easy path, though. I resisted. I planted my feet firmly and dug in... hard. I growled and yelled and gnashed my teeth. I lashed out. I hurt those whom I loved most. I hurt myself. I hurt God. I paid the price. God taught me some harsh lessons because of my continued rebellion and I very nearly lost everything that was priceless to me. Thankfully, though, through His limitless love, grace, and mercy, I found forgiveness, healing, restoration, recommitment, and a new purpose. My journey's not done, though. I have a ways to go yet as I continue to search myself inside and out and keep finding little "hangers-on" that need to be dealt with. The old adage "Be patient -- God's not done with me yet" holds true, but I find that it not only applies to others being patient with me, but also to me being patient with God as He works in my life, bringing me to where He wants me to be.
Now, don't let it be thought that I'm saying men need to be humorless, joyless fuddy-duddies who can't ever have fun. I'm absolutely not saying that. We can still do things like play games and have fun. We just need to make sure that those things do not come to dominate our lives and that we never lose our focus on what's truly important.
Men, please don't blow this off today and wake up tomorrow only to suddenly find to your great regret that years have passed and you've wasted all that time. The time to make the decision is NOW! This is something we need. It's something that our wives and children desperately desire. It's what God demands.