I love epic stories that chronicle the raw courage and gritty determination of men. Braveheart, Gladiator, Unbroken, The Great Escape, Apollo 13, Chariots of Fire and Saving Private Ryan - to name a few. But do the larger than life characters in these movies define what it takes to be a great man?
If you’re a man, you’ve wrestled with this question before. You’ve experienced the inner struggle of feeling like you just don’t measure up, that others, once they really get to know you, will find you lacking. I have. In the face of my own failings as a husband, father and pastor, I couldn’t imagine that I would ever resemble great men like William Wallace or Eric Liddell.
What does it mean to be a man, a good, Godly and great man? For Young Knights this is a big question. After all, Turning Boys into Great Men is our mission!
When David was dying he gave a charge to Solomon, “Be strong, and show yourself a man, and keep the charge of the Lord your God, walking in his ways….” We find a similar charge to men in I Cor. 16:13-14 where Paul writes, “Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong. Let all that you do be done in love.”
Manhood, as defined in the Bible, is a functional reality. To act like a man means that you follow hard after God, live and die for what matters, understand and respect authority, stand for truth, respect and honor women, protect and provide, lead, serve, show compassion, make hard choices and finish what you start! But let’s be careful. These things are not a list to be performed. Let’s not put that pressure on boys! These are the overflow produced by the Holy Spirit, the result of our abiding in Christ.
In this blog, I’m not attempting to breakdown a theology of authentic biblical manhood. But it seems important to our ministry to get it straight. And even more importantly, regardless of our age, skin color or social standing, that we’re honest about the struggle and it’s impact in our lives and the lives of those around us. To be blunt, I think it would solve a lot of problems if men acted like men!!!
I want to pick this up in future blogs, but for now consider three simple statements that might help define what it takes to be a great man:
- IDENTITY in Christ
- INTEGRITY through Christ
- INFLUENCE for Christ
I’m praying that Young Knights will help boys discover who they are and can be in, through and for Christ. I’m praying for God to raise up a generation of great men, men after His own heart!