This past week we’ve been discussing negative self-images and insecurities women deal with. Lindon feels men have their own unique challenges and they hide behind entirely different types of ‘masks’. Here’s his take…
It always seems to be about the ladies. How they look, how they feel, what they want and what they need. More love, more attention and their man to do a little more listening – not fixing, just more listening. See, I’m listening!
Well ladies, I’m here to tell you something that’s a secret – a very big secret! Men don’t want it out, but it’s time to spill the beans so to speak. Just like women, men have needs, wants and desires too, but we also fight major self-esteem issues as well – seriously.
We worry about our height, weight, hair – or lack of it, muscle mass, stomach girth, impressive toys in the driveway, house size, bank account balance, job title, stature, etc.
But men have a way of hiding their emotions deep beneath an often hardened exterior and aloof posture; undisclosed passions are the norm. They have deep longings to be desired, wanted and loved for who they are and what they can bring to the table, but because they are designed and expected to be ‘strong and tough’, they do a marvelous job of hiding their “real” selves behind false senses of security – gym workouts, souped-up vehicles, big boy toys, titles and careers, income level and success in any form.
This is our mask -no makeup required.
We conceal our true identities, masking the unfathomable depths we carry inside of us. Believe it or not, we are “deep” after all.
Men, will the ‘real you’ please stand up!
The adventurous spirit in all boys begs the question, “Who do we want to be?” Well, of course, we all wanted to be heroes, right? Are we the idols we dreamed we’d become? Did we reach “larger than life” status and did we grow up to be that modern day fairy tale boy we were convinced girls fancy?
Growing up, that’s a lot of pressure. Men are success driven and task oriented. They’re going to get er’ done, one way or the other, and will try to attain hero status one way or the other. This all too often leads to looking in all the wrong places.
What’s your response? Who are you? Who or what have you become a hero to?
Are you the ‘go to guy’ that’ll get it all done, no matter what. Do you rescue your company, co-workers and clients. Are you the corporate “Bail Bondsman”, ready to bail your company out? Are you the leader that upper management knows will win at all costs, even if it means sacrificing your wife, children and the family pet on the altar of “Promotion” and the “All-mighty Buck”. Perhaps it’s really just a wall of pride or conceit which keeps you shackled to an unhealthy view of yourself? Are you a gym rat who mistakenly believes the muscles and mass make the man? Are you an acquisition guy, bent on collecting the newest, latest and most expensive techno gadgets and toys? Are you chained to who you think you are supposed to be, not who God has called you to be?
Is this really the Super Hero we longed to be?
Perhaps the bigger question should be, who are you when you walk in the door at the end of the day? Have you made any effort to achieve true hero status here?
If not, it’s time to wake up and smell the coffee. We need to focus on being the super heroes to our wives and families, carefully adjusting our work and life balance. Many of us are so caught up in the false senses of security that we can’t even see the important things slipping away. If we don’t change, most of what is precious to us will be gone long before we have time to sit around and regret the actions we aren’t taking today.
Nahum 1:13 (NIV)
13 Now I will break their yoke from your neck
and tear your shackles away.”
I believe it’s time for a great reveal! Perhaps you’ve forgotten who you dreamed of becoming or your true super hero has been buried inside. It’s time for you to let down and be transparent so everyone can get to know the “real” you; so you can get to know him too. Maybe you’re afraid of who you’ve become, scared to take the mask off and drop the cape that’s covers you. If you don’t like who you see, there is ALWAYS time to change! Remember, the father knows us all too well. There’s no good that can come from being consumed with the wrong stuff and trying to hide it doesn’t work.Unchain my life Let the doubt and darkness fall from my life Unchain my dreams Let the heavens of love open up in me Unchain my life (“Unchain” by songwriters: Mark Gersmehl & Billy Smiley)
The truth is this world is out to destroy “real heroes”; there is no room for them in this earthly realm. It is up to you to make a change; to rise up and overcome.
“…not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit says the Lord.” (Zechariah 4:6)
It seems very easy to get distracted by the all-consuming, unimportant things this life has to offer. We find ourselves running deeper and deeper into rabbit holes which end up being dark and deceptive places, full of snares that Satan has laid before us. We are blinded by the scales placed ever so slowly over our eyes. Life is a blur and so is the sin that that we may find ourselves in. Our inner fears dim the vision, and men without vision perish.
Men, we must have our blinders on 24/7 to keep focused on the higher call of God on our lives and not the new lit’l hottie that just started last week or the gal from the other department that started bringing coffee to our desk. We have to stop worrying about the new car that the Smith’s bought (probably financed / leased anyway) or about the new job that John got which you thought for sure you “had in the bag”. Our ginormous bank accounts and personal credit lines have no significance or bearing on God’s eternal kingdom plan for us. We need to focus on the call to be the spiritual leaders in our home; loving, thoughtful and fully aware husbands to our wives and fathers to our children. We are called to be the providers for our families, not necessarily financial giants or slaves to the almighty J-O-B! (Just Over Broke), climbing the proverbial ladder to so-called success.
We must break the chains of all types of bondage which keep us from achieving the type of hero status God desires for our lives. There is no room for addiction, unhealthy competition, low self-esteem, disloyalty, negativity, living outside our means and lack of proper priorities. We must set our sights on what is truly important, the calling on our lives to be ‘real’ men – men of integrity, character, altruism and heart.
For those of us who have served in the military, police, medical or rescue operation fields, we know what it is to serve others and to serve with honor. Why is it so hard for us to serve our wives and families with the same level of love, respect and honor that we bestow upon complete strangers?
Why do we hold so strongly to the past. To the hurts, harsh words, never ending conflict, negative reactions; where is forgiveness? We can do anything because of what He (Christ) did for us! This is where we need to be heroes, true over-comers on a mission to save what is eternally important. Me must focus on the condition of our heart and soul, and meeting the responsibility to our families. THIS is what matters to our Father in heaven!
We (MEN) need to champion in our lives and homes the following: love, understanding, respect, positive support, listening, commitment (remember: blinders on men!), hugging, hand holding, walking, talking, affirming words, complimenting and leading the family in prayer every day.
Galatians 5:22-23 (ESV)
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
Victory Is Ours
I’m here to tell you that we are destined to “WIN”. We must win the war, the spiritual war against marriage, the family unit, our health (physical & mental) and our faith. This is a war that few Christians are surviving, much less winning. We need to humble ourselves and be willing to ask the Father to carry us through this world, as we are weak and he is strong. Call on Christ for the spiritual and physical strength to victoriously fulfill his call and purpose for our short, but very necessary and important lives. This is boot camp and basic training for the battles that are to come. Are you willing join the fight?
Revelation 19:11-16 (ESV)
The Rider on a White Horse
11 Then I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse! The one sitting on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he judges and makes war. 12 His eyes are like a flame of fire, and on his head are many diadems, and he has a name written that no one knows but himself. 13 He is clothed in a robe dipped in[a] blood, and the name by which he is called is The Word of God. 14 And the armies of heaven, arrayed in fine linen, white and pure, were following him on white horses. 15 From his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations and he will rule them with a rod of iron. He will tread the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God the Almighty. 16 On his robe and on his thigh he has a name written, King of kings and Lord of lords.
We are called by God to be warriors and we must serve with honor. We may get wounded in the fight, but we are conquerors and will be victorious in this battle if we are seeking his will for our lives and trusting in his promises; the Bible tells us so!
Romans 8:37-39 (ESV)
37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers,39 nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
So again I ask, will the ‘real you’ please stand up?
Who is the ‘real’ you? Men may not wear make-up but they still have many different masks to hide behind. Forego on the cover-ups and false hero status. Let your guard down, bring your true heart to the game, decide what’s truly important, step up and be the husband, father and man of God you were designed to be.Don’t miss the next post. Sign up for email updates in the box at the right!