I’ve had the privilege recently of sitting with some amazing young people and hearing their hearts, hearing where they are at, where they’d like to be at and just generally being allowed to listen to them sharing.
So much of what I hear seems to connect with their confusion of who God is, what He wants and how we should connect the two. I must say that for most of my life I struggled with this, to be honest, I still have days now, where I struggle with understanding Him and what He wants for my life. But for certain, one thing that God has solidified in my heart, chiselled into my very soul, is that He wants me to be a father, a husband and a man, and those are things He holds close to His heart. After all, He is a Father, he lives as a husband to his bride and he was a man!
Not the wishy-washy, stand for nothing fall for anything, self driven and ego fueled example the world seems to be waiving around, but His example. Solid, bold, stable, purposed, passionate, desire filled vision driven, family focused and eternity minded.
What seems to be lacking from many young people nowadays is an example of this, and that, I believe, leads to much of the confusion about who God is and what He wants.
God has called men, for such a time as this, the need is here, the harvest is great (mainly because He’s in control of it) but the workers are few. Matthew 9:37 NIV.
I want to make a call to families and marriages out there, there are roles and functions in the family and in your marriage, don’t confuse the two. My function as a husband, is not the same as my Role as a husband, or father for that matter. Men and woman are created equal, our laws also protect this great need, this speaks to roles, I am not better than my wife, but equal. But us being equal, doesn’t mean she can fulfill my function as a husband and father, in fact, if she attempts to take my function, my mantle from me, as is done in many families, we have confusion, we have lack of protection, we have families and marriages that do not function as God intended them to do.
Someone explained it like this. Men carry umbrellas and hold it over their families, protecting them from the rain. When a man, husband, father does not step into his function or his wife takes on this function because he is not succeeding or merely fulfilling it, what we have is a bunch of well-meaning woman waving around a closed umbrella. They can’t open it, they were never meant too, and the result is obvious, everyone gets get wet!
So how does this tie up to young people knowing Him and know what He wants? Life is about modelling, we look, we see, we do. If we don’t or can’t, then there will be a problem. Young people are growing up in families where Dad is Dad, but Mom is the man. Lets be clear, I am a massive fan of woman, my wife is one 🙂 but it is not fair for me to make her take on my function, she cannot fulfill it, and when she attempts to the results are what we are seeing in society today.
Am I slating, men, am I calling all single moms unfit to the task at hand, absolutely not. Single moms are amazing, it sometimes feels as if we need more of them, because the purpose and resolve they carry out there parenting with, in order to fill the vacuum, is bold and courageous. Men too, are living in a time like no other, the pressures, the distractions, the temptations are severe and they are targeting us more and more each day. Being a man today like men were 100 years ago, won’t cut it. We are living in a time, I think, where the need for strong men, fathers and husbands is so crucial that doing something that was regarded as going above and beyond a few years ago, would be seen as getting by today. Why?
The Devil knows that strength lies in family, and men are the head of the family. Ephesians 22:22-29 NIV. remember role vs function, before you get all bent out of shape. If the Devil can get men to abdicate their function, families will die. The symptoms are already here – confused young people, who have not had Gods model modelled for them in the home are growing up and creating families using the skew model they have experienced, and so the ball keeps rolling.
I can’t tell a mom to stop acting the part her husband should be fulfilling, she’ll simply say that if she doesn’t do it, it won’t get done. There is so much media in the world that is prophesying the fall of men. Simply look at the latest sitcoms, are there any solid male role models, or are there a bunch of immature guys, lacking responsibility and purpose who are the butt of every joke for the duration of the episode. Men are being portrayed as a joke in many areas, and we seem fine with it.
I believe the only option is for men to take up their cross’, die to themselves daily and when they fail, to be honest, confess it and get on getting on with it. Its time for men to put on their man pants and start modelling to their kids, their families, their churches and their societies, that they mean business, they are here to stay and that their function will be respected and taken seriously. We are not here simply to make money for our families, we must provide financially, emotionally, physically and spiritually. Any less is not martyrdom, its failure and our kids are the ones who will reap the harvest.
I know it’s been a bit of a hard session today, but lets face it being a man is not for sissy’s, we need to love, we need to cry, we need to fight, we need to show compassion, we need to lift up and bend down and we need to all these things everyday. So what am I saying, men we need to start behaving Daddly, we need to take back our umbrella, open it and cover our family.