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Recovering masculinity

Over the past years we’ve seen a leveling of the differences between men and women. As a result, real masculinity in men has become harder and harder to find.

This scarcity of masculinity is not good. When men possess the qualities of masculinity, they are equipped to lead, develop, deliver and protect in a way that brings glory to God and good to those around them. But when men lose their masculinity, they also lose their spine. They lack courage and confidence, and the whole culture suffers for it.

So, what can be done to put the masculinity back in men? There are several areas that need to be emphasized.

The most important of these is that men need to assume responsibility. The first instance of a man forsaking his masculinity was in the garden of Eden, when Adam blamed his wife for his own sin. This act led him to go into hiding.

When men fail to take responsibility in their own lives today, something similar happens. Men who won’t take responsibility quickly feel like they’re losing control of everything around them. They become guilty, and feel depressed and ineffective. And, like Adam, they go into hiding.

How can this be overcome? If you are a man, you must take responsibility for your life – all of it. You must tell yourself repeatedly, “I am responsible.” If you are married to a man, you must (gently) stop covering for him. He needs to learn from His mistakes, so he will begin to take more responsibility. If you have sons, do not coddle them. Don’t pick up all their messes. Make them responsible for their own lives.

There are other areas that also need to be emphasized if men are going to recover their masculinity.  

One of these is that men need to use their capacities and talents to the fullest to subdue and develop the world around them. When God first created mankind, He gave the command to fill the earth and rule over it (Gen.1:28). This command has never been rescinded.

Men must refuse to see the world as a zero-sum game, where there is only so much prosperity to go around, with the state possessing the role to slice up an ever-shrinking pie in a way it deems fair. No. Men are to use their abilities fully to develop their families and communities for the good of others. As they do. God blesses with abundance.

Also, in order to recover masculinity, men must contend with evil and uphold righteousness. Masculine men are fascinated with truth and justice, and are disturbed by injustice, oppression and wrong-doing – so much so, that it propels them into righteous action.

Much more could be said on this subject. But I want to insert that recovering masculinity does not mean resorting to bluster and a macho attitude. Not at all. Real masculinity balances it’s boldness with sacrifice, love, and wisdom. It’s actually a glorious thing to behold.

This balance, is not easily mastered, and because of it all men who would recover their masculinity must turn their lives repeatedly to Jesus Christ – the perfect model of masculinity.

  1. April 22, 2010 at 3:10 pm

    I’ve been thinking along similar lines of late. Have you read ‘Wild at Heart’ by Eldridge? An accessible foray in to this subject and theological reflection too. If you have not, your views tie in very well with it.

  2. dbostrom
    April 22, 2010 at 8:11 pm

    I’ve only read portions of Eldridge’s book, but its themes definitely resonate.

    Be sure and listen to our podcast on biblical masculinity.

  3. G.A.S. Guys
    October 1, 2010 at 5:33 pm

    I agree. But instead of cuddling your sons, fathers do need to give a hug and a kiss now and then. After all, as you have said, Jesus is the true model of masculinity and His relationship with His Father as also perfect as well.

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