If you asked around at your local high school about what it took to be a man, what do you think you would find?
Would it involve who slept with more chicks, how good you are at sports, or who has the biggest muscles? How about how much alcohol you can hold down, or how fearless you are? Would you get docked “manhood points” for being smart or wearing glasses?
Now what would happen if you asked that same question to some of the men you look up to? Would you expect the same results?
Somewhere we have gotten our wires crossed on what it means to be a man. When grown men say one thing, and those trying to become men say another, well… someone has to be mistaken. So let’s look at it a different way.
Think of 3 of the greatest men you know. Do they fit into your original definition of manliness? Mine were pretty far from that first description.
Do you know any men – that are out of college – that fit the image you came up with in the first paragraph? If yes, would you look up to them as real men? I know a few… and they aren’t exactly what I would call real men at all. In fact, most people call them immature.
So why is it that there is such a gap between high school manhood and adult manhood? The answer is as simple as the mind versus the media.
Allow me to explain…
Throughout our childhood we rely on others to tell us how thing work – and let’s face it, the media wants us to believe that being a man is all about girls, cars, sports, and muscles. All you have to do is watch a few commercials and you’ll see the truth in that.
During our teen years, we get to start living that. Our hormones have kicked in and girls, cars, sports, and muscles all sound pretty good. If that’s all it takes to be a man, we can do this!
Adults on the other hand, they’ve been around the block a time or two. They know that what it comes down to is that no matter what cologne you wear, what you look like, or just how overall awesome you are – it’s who you are that really makes you a man. They’ve seen the girls fail them. They have seen the side effects of drugs and alcohol. They know there is more to life and more to being a man. They’ve learned. They have the experience to counteract the message that media is sending them.
Before we can really man up we first have to define manhood – and we have to define it without all the lies and fears. We have to build it from the inside out and look at it from God’s point of view. In the beginning of Titus chapter 2, that definition is given as being self-controlled, worthy of respect, and just using your head.
So now it comes down to the question – do you really want to be a man?
Are you really ready to man up?