So many men these days look to the world for their definition. We look at the things around us and we make sure we need to fit into the sphere of what it means to be a man. I struggled growing up because these were not things that I had any proclivity for. When it came to sports cars, I thought they were incredible to look at. Not because I knew what body style the car had or what engine was running under the hood. I liked the shiny loud thing that was driving past me. My brain looked at it and said, “Wow that’s shiny and fast!” I had absolutely no desire to learn about the cars. When it came to sports, I didn’t have a favorite team, or a favorite player while all my classmates had posters on their wall of their favorite player and their stats. I measured my “manliness” according to these measurements and when you do so you will find yourself coming up short. It wasn’t until I understood that God created me to be who I am that I became comfortable in being the man God created me to be.

On March 3rd we as a church took a look at what it means to be a man of God. There were a couple nights when I was writing this sermon that I had the thought, “People are going to take offense to this,” and I was going through scriptures I realized there was nothing to be offended by. The Bible lays out a blueprint for what a man of God is, and we can either choose to follow it or not. We as a man of God are called to be in control of our home. We as parents are given a gift from God and we are entrusted to raise them right. We are told in Proverbs 22:6, “Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old, he will not depart from it.” (ESV) We want our children to bring us joy and pride. Those are natural things but if we don’t put the work in now when they are children then they will bring us strife. Proverbs 17:25 tells us, “A foolish son is a grief to his father and bitterness to her who bore him.” God looked at raising a child as an important task because He knows that we are bringing up children to be followers of Him. As I raise my children, there are some days where I lay my head down at night and think, “I absolutely crushed it today!” Other days I will lay down and think, “What happened?? Where did I go off the tracks?” These are normal days, and we should not carry them over. After all, if we are allowed to make mistakes and come back to God to receive forgiveness, so can our children. We as a man of God need to wake up the next day and strive to show the love of God all the while keeping control of our homes.

While we are still talking about our homes, a man of God should love his wife. Ephesians 5:25 tells us gentlemen, “Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word…” Men, if you are married you had best be loving your wives and loving them well. Christ died for the church and if push comes to shove, we should be willing to die for our wives. But barring those extreme circumstances what about the things that don’t involve laying down your life? What do you talk about when you go out with your friends? Are you uplifting to her? Do you build her up or do you talk about her with your buddies? Imagine the witness you would have if while your friends are talking about their wives, you said to them, “I remember this one time my wife was nagging me and driving me crazy, and I took a step back and realized I wasn’t doing what I needed to and so I stepped up a bit. Now things are incredible!” Men, love your wives, after all they have to put up with us!

Men, how is your prayer time? How is your Bible reading time? We need to be saturated in those times. “But Pastor Judd, I don’t have time for any of that,” if it means a lot to us, we will make time for it. God yearns to spend time with us, but he isn’t going to make us. That isn’t love. God wants us to seek him out and to spend time with him. We as men are called to so much more than we have stepped up to. It’s time gentlemen, it’s time to step up to what God has called us to do. Take up the sword of the spirit and put on the full armor of God. (Ephesians 6:10-20)