Friday, April 20, 2012

Manhood is Not Enough

Manhood has infiltrated the Body of Christ. “Promise Keepers” has turned into an overgrown men’s club with a Christian veneer. The myth of man making his way in the world still carries more weight than depending on the love of God shed abroad in our hearts. Men in men’s groups are still prodding other men to get married and have kids. Most men are marrying because they think that they have to. They fear living alone, when any marriage is predicated on being able to live alone happily. Too many men and women are convinced that they are incomplete without someone else to hold them through the tough time. Man and woman do need a help-meet, but flesh and blood are not meet to help a man. The Holy Spirit is the advocate who walks with us, lives within us, guides us through all troubles and understanding.

Do we not realize that every one of us as believers is never alone? Our identity, our oneness with God the Father is based on our unity with God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. We have a Trinity of life and love in our lives. For many believers, though, they are still caught up in living by their senses., identifying who they are what they have based on what they cogitate in their noggins. We did not make ourselves, so who are we then to assume that we can chart our own course in this world? Men are not the masters of their fate. They do not captain their own souls. Yet like many believers, the men in men’s groups have substituted the wisdom of Christ with the weary worldliness of work and self-worth. Christ is our man, He is our everything. Contrary to the myths of manhood, which include the Sturdy Oak and the Rage-a-holic who must get mad and get by one his own, men are beautiful creations. We are called to depend on our Father, married to Christ, filled with the Holy Spirit.
We must live our lives based on our true identity in Christ, not in ourselves, not in our families, not in our work. He is our new self, for He is our life, for every man, like every woman, was dead in his trespasses until God quickened us in Christ.

I was appalled to hear in one meeting that one man said that pornographic addiction has reached as many as 70% of Christian men. I believe that number is exaggerated, but that does not matter. We are focusing too much on what we do, not enough on who we are in Christ. As He is, so are we in this world. Jesus Christ does not struggle with pornography, lust, theft, adultery, so we in our spirit man do not struggle with these perversions, either.

Since we are a new  Creation in Christ, we need to let His life live through us. We must reckon ourselves dead to the things of this world. If we are tempted to sin, and even if we succumb to the temptation, who we are in Christ does not change. His grace is still sufficient to set us free from all sin. When we sin, His grace super-abounds to overcome all things. Nothing can separate us from the love of God. The more that we realize that we are children of light, Sons of God, and that nothing can take away our saintly status in Christ, then we reign in live over every addiction, every perversion, no longer persuaded to give in to every temptation.

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