Tuesday, May 27, 2014

The New Man

Along with so many others, I have been blown away by The New Man series at my church the past five weeks.  It has been inspiring, affirming, encouraging and challenging for me personally and for our community.  This series is relevant more than ever in our society.  This message is necessary as so many men did not have a good example of a real man in their home to model themselves after. This message is freeing in that it calls men to be who they were created to be; that is to be Men instead of Boys.  I highly encourage you to listen to the series. It will be relevant to you whether you are a man, woman, married, single, or divorced.  If you have a man in your life that has emulated any of the characteristics of the man God created him to be, thank God and find ways to continually affirm him. If you are a parent, listen in an attempt to teach your sons about manhood and for your daughters to instil a standard that she will not compromise on.  If you find yourself wanting to be married, listen with an open heart and allow the Lord to form a vision for your future.  If you are a man who has caused harm to others in your life because you have acted like a boy instead of a man allow the Lord to redeem those areas and relationships by humbling yourself fully before Him and those you have hurt along the way.

Would you be surprised to hear that the women of our church community have been reportedly thanking our leadership for these inspiring messages?  I am not surprised in the least.  Women can be so quick to nudge the man beside them pointing the finger and yet women might be the most difficult to address in a similar fashion. Can you even imagine what would happen if a church, even Crossroads preached a series on Womanhood? This would be so incredibly controversial, I cannot even fathom it.  I can see the revolt now, women rising up saying, "Who is HE to tell me who to be as a woman?"

Ok, but seriously, who are we supposed to be as women? Our culture has been telling women to become like men: be strong, be independent, be able to provide for ourselves. Even sexually women have taken their sexuality into their own hands claiming that they have a right to be pleasured too coming out of generations where women's sexual needs have been under valued.  Many women shudder when they hear the Biblical woman as described in Proverbs 31.  Where do we begin? This has got my heart and mind swirling. I'm asking the Lord to form the answers more in my life. I have some ideas and I hope to share them soon. My initial idea for a series title for womanhood might be something like: Women, Stand Down! Yes, I just said that.

Recently I had the privilege of witnessing a dear friend of mine lean into her husband's strength in unimaginable ways under heartbreaking, unjust circumstances. He fought for her and their family. He took responsibility for their loss, their hurts. He did all he could to protect them emotionally and physically. And you know what I will never forget? I saw her physically and emotionally lean into his strength, his protection, his loving arms. I have a visual of them sitting on the front pew that I will never forget. I literally saw her leaning on him and I saw a man with a strong back accepting her need for him. Oh my goodness. It still makes me tearful and gives me goose bumps.This exemplifies a man being who God has called him to be and allows his wife to benefit from his strength and courage. 

So thankful for the work that the Lord is doing in our church, in our community and in our family. I have had the joy of listening to this series with much delight because of the Man I have in my husband. I appreciate the reminder to appreciate and affirm Eric for his leadership in our family and in his work. 

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