Manhood (Part 13) – Man and His Family (Authority)

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In our last installment on this topic, we established how critically important the family is for every man. That in the end, his family is his legacy above all else. It would seem that our obligations as men are so high that we will never live up to them.

C. S. Lewis, as always, said it clearly:

It is painful, being a man, to have to assert the privilege, or the burden, which Christianity lays upon my own sex. I am crush­ingly aware of how inadequate most of us are, on our actual and historical individualities, to fill the place prepared for us.

Oh, how right he is. Left to ourselves we are totally inadequate. But “the place prepared for us” is still there, and it must be occupied. As Christian men, we must throw ourselves at the feet of the King of Kings, and beg His wisdom, insight, grace, and blessing. Still, the mantle must be worn. When a man refuses it, everybody is the loser for it.

Whatever our frustration-a culture that bites us, wives who won’t follow us, kids who won’t cooperate with us-we do not have the option of just tossing up our hands and walking away. God-honoring men don’t quit. God-honoring men don’t abdicate, or try to hide in the baggage from God’s anointing, like the pitiful king-designated Saul.

God-honoring men stay at it. And stay. And stay. And stay. Growing and improving. Taking the hits and pushing on down the field. Moving in one direction over the long haul. Many times it’s two steps forward, one back. But it’s still movement; it’s keeping on keeping on.

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Signs of Life

I went over to the church this afternoon, and as I pulled back into the neighborhood, for the first time this year, I saw the unmistakable signs of life.  Trees and shrubs everywhere with those ever so small red tips.  There is life there.  It’s coming.  What has been dormant is now springing back. 

new-buds.jpgI feel that way about life many times.  I’ve been through numerous patches of dormant seasons where nothing feels right…where very little flows effortlessly.  But when new life arrives, it feels wonderful.  Happily, I feel like I’m entering one of those seasons now….where life is returning…where energy is renewed….where hope is plentiful….and anything is possible. 

How about you?  Ever been there?  There now? 

Manhood (Part 12) – Man and His Family (Authority)

ATTENTION – This blog has a new home address. All the material below is on the new site plus other material of interest as well. Come on over for a visit. CLICK HERE!

Yesterday we presented a clear and compelling case for the authority of a man in relation to his wife. Maybe one of the reasons that this has become a frightening concept for most women (and plenty of men) is because of how authority gets abused. But the sort of authority that God is mandating here looks much different than the type most of us are accustomed to. Once again, we’ll let Stu Weber lead us in this discussion…….

There is no room in biblical headship for self-inflated big shots. Still, God’s Word makes it undeniably clear that “the man” is the head of his home. The man is held responsible for the leadership of his marriage and home! The two words that describe his role most basically are “husband” and “head.” These two words are good words—benevolent words—intended to provide our homes with leadership, authority, order, and direction. Rightly understood, they are Camelot-inducing words. If you’ll allow me, I’ll borrow a couple of definitions from my earlier book, Tender Warrior, to nail these terms down.

question-authority.jpgHUSBAND. The noun form of the word means “manager.” A hus­band is a steward. He is a caretaker and caregiver. He is the man held responsible. In its verb form the word means “to direct, to manage.” Those are strong terms that imply effective and responsible leadership.

HEAD. “Head” means director. It means chief. As in headmaster. Principal. Foremost. “Head” equals leadership and authority, as in the head of the class, head of the military, head of the company, head of the church, head of the home, or head man. Head means head.

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Manhood (Part 11) – Man and His Family (Authority)

question-authority.jpgATTENTION – This blog has a new home address. All the material below is on the new site plus other material of interest as well. Come on over for a visit. CLICK HERE!

Today, we continue on the theme of authority and what that means for a man in relation to his family. Most of us don’t like the concept of authority anymore. We don’t like to follow it, nor, interestingly enough, do most men want to exercise it. It’s just too much work. And in that cultural landscape, we have seen a myth grow into a near “fact-like” status. It is the myth of mutual submission, which really sounds pleasing to the ear and totally reasonable. But it’s really a crock. Here’s how Stu Weber describes it:

“Mutual submission” is not only an oxymoron, it is an impossibility. It exists neither in theory, nor in practice, nor in Scripture.

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Manhood (Part 10) – Man and His Family

ATTENTION – This blog has a new home address. All the material below is on the new site plus other material of interest as well. Come on over for a visit. CLICK HERE!

We left off last week with a potentially searing question to the heart of every man in relation to his kingdom:

So how is your kingdom? How is the king in you doing? How’s it at your house, in your little realm? What kind of leader are you? Is there a sweet aroma of contentment? Or is your home characterized by the sour taste of bitterness? Are the “citizens” secure? Is there peace? Is there laughter in the hallways? Is everyone glad to know the king is in his castle? Or would they, frankly, prefer a revolt? Is your home a little taste of heaven, or is it hell on earth?

The answer to this question will indicate the type of leadership (or lack thereof) you have exercised in your home. This comes down to a question of authority and authority seems to be a real sticking point in today’s culture. This is how Stu Weber addresses this question of authority:

question-authority.jpgAuthority is the bottom line of the universe. It is the inevitable first question. Who’s in charge here?! It is the first answer. Rebellion against it started the first war—on a cosmic scale—just as it has started every war since, whether global or local, physical or spiritual, marital or personal. Authority is the one element which, given our self-oriented depravity, chaffs us all. But we will never escape it. And it is particularly incumbent upon Christians to learn to live with it.

Someone is always in charge. It goes without saying. It’s axiomatic. We can try to deny it all we want to, but—someone is always in charge. It’s the way God made this world, because it reflects the reality of His world. And when Satan tried to snatch a little authority for himself, he ended up on the ash heap of the universe.

Someone is always in charge. I don’t remember when I first realized that. But I’m sure it was early in life. Every infant soon learns that someone is charge. It was reinforced at home. It was reinforced again at school. There was no doubt that first day of kindergarten who was in charge. Our teacher, Mrs. Taylor! It was the same at recess; during the lunch hour; on the school bus; and, yes, even in the tree fort in the back yard. Someone is always in charge. It is true on the football team…in the marching band…in the fraternity ­house…and in the corporate board room. It is true everywhere.

Questions to ponder? Do you ever find yourself resenting authority? How does it affect you when you do? Do you resent anyone who doesn’t respect your authority? Do you agree that authority is necessary? If so, why?

Dennis Foley, a highly decorated career soldier tells an interesting story about authority that is both humorous and informative:

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Manhood (Part 9) – Man and His Family

ATTENTION – This blog has a new home address. All the material below is on the new site plus other material of interest as well. Come on over for a visit. CLICK HERE!

Today we continue on our journey of understanding manhood and it’s role as husband / provider / leader. These are critical roles as the family unit us disintegrating all around us. When men do not live out this function of their manhood, their masculinity, they set in motion a ripple effect that can carry forward for years, even generations. Men, we must get a grip on this. Stu Weber describes this as the King pillar in a man’s heart…that servant-leader that God hardwired into our DNA. Let’s join Stu again:

REMEMBER CAMELOT?

Pristine. Pure rivers. Gentle breezes. Stable homes. Safe pathways winding between serene hamlets. Children at play. Happy citizens. The poets called it, “The kingdom of summer.” It was a kingdom at peace.

excalibur.jpgThe king made it happen. Arthur Pendragon, son of Uther, High King of Britain, delivered to his people their paradise. His courage and cunning as a warrior drove the raiding Saxon hordes into the sea. His skills as a negotiator united the petty regional kings, ended the constant bloodshed, and-for the first time since the Legions marched-brought the old Roman colony of Britannia under a single glorious banner. His leadership seemed nearly divine. It was a little bit of life “on earth as it is in heaven.”

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Balancing Act

I came across a really interesting post over on the blog run by the super-creative pastors at lifechurch.tv.  It has to do with balance.  This topic is one of those that is always simmering beneath the surface, especially at the pace of life that so many of us live these days.  As a result, the thoughts of a balanced life are either near and dear or something we hate to hear.  Here’s what the guys over at  Swerve have to say about the subject………

One of the most common topics people ask me about is how I balance my life, family, and ministry.

My response is simple, “I don’t live a balanced life.

In my opinion, the balanced life is unachievable and unbiblical.

balance.jpgJesus didn’t call us to live a balanced life. He called us to follow Him.

While following Jesus, our life will often be out-of-balance. He may lead us on long stretches of ministry followed by a substantial season of rest. Ministry will rarely be predictable.

Some pastors are pursuing the illusive goal of the balanced life only to fail again and again.

  • Their marriages struggle.
  • Their ministries limp along.
  • They are spiritually exhausted.

Their blog is directed mostly to others in ministry.  But I think there is application in other areas as well.  How about you?  Does this throw you a curveball?  Does this offer you some relief?  What are your thoughts?