In my last post Are You A Real Man I addressed the foundation to being a real man is surrendering your life to Jesus Christ and following Him. Once you have made that decision to follow Jesus you still have the challenge ahead of, “Walking It Out” every day. This is an area I constantly struggle in and I am daily growing in. Here are three specific steps I have found that greatly assist me in this all important role.
This is the most important thing we can do to grow in our faith, but it often gets ignored or pushed out of our lives. God loves you. In fact He is crazy about you and He desires to have a relationship with you. He is ALWAYS faithful and He DOES answer prayer. Now God is not a genie in a lamp who just grants us all of our wishes, but you would be amazed at how radically your life can improve if you start relying on God in all things and go to Him constantly in prayer. This does not mean we do not have a role to play in our own lives. We certainly do, but God wants us to rely on Him. God has great plans for your life. Don’t just ask Him to give you everything you want. Start asking Him what does He want for your life. You may want good things for your life, but God has even GREATER plans for you. I have seen God work in my heart so much as I continue to seek His will for my life.
#2 Read The Bible
I was not raised in the church and I do not believe I ever read any part of the Old Testament until after I was in college and I met my wife. If you are anything like me reading the Bible can seem like an uncomfortable, daunting task. Let me encourage you that the Bible is the single most important thing you or I can read. It is the Word of God. EVERY SINGLE WORD OF THE BIBLE IS TRUE. The God of the universe who literally spoke the world into existence has spoken to you and me and recorded the entire story in both the Old and New Testament.
The Bible all points to Jesus Christ and is full of practical life wisdom to help you and I grow in every area of our lives. If you are not sure where to start reading the Bible let me offer some manageable suggestions. Read one chapter of Proverbs daily (there are 31 chapters). Also begin reading one chapter of the New Testament daily (It starts with Matthew). There is not a test. We do not get points for reading more than our neighbor or co-worker. That is not the point. What I know is the God’s ways are higher than our ways and as we read His Word more we will begin to grow closer to Him and better understand His will for our lives. The Holy Spirit will shine light into areas where we need to grow and help us gain a better understanding of God’s love for us. That understanding of God’s love will help us love others better.
#3 Build Christian Friendships
It has been my observation that guys tend to not build deep relationships as we grow older. This is unfortunate. We are created to live in community with one another. Joining a church is a great place to meet fellow believers and I recommend it, but it is not the only place. If you pray to God to bring strong Christian men into your life He will introduce you to the right people in His timing. Being a man is not easy. It is hard and we need to be able to talk with other men who understand the struggles we face and who are willing to pray with us and hold us accountable.
Everything in society is going to send us negative images of what being a man looks like. We need to surround ourselves with positive examples of how a godly man acts. These are a few attributes I have observed in godly men I admire. A godly man:
Loves his wife
Loves his children
Doesn’t compare himself with others
Does the right thing instead of the easy thing
That is just a short list of observations I have made of how the godly men in my life act. I am thankful for the example they have set for me because I know I am required to set the example for my son.
Question: Which one of these three steps do you need to grow in the most? What is one thing you can commit to do in order to grow in that area?