Dear young man, there’s more to you than your penis!

???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????Here are some phrases I keep hearing from young men in our modern culture. “Gonna hit that!”, “Gonna get wit that!”, or “Gonna nail it!”. While it’s not always men saying this stuff, it’s men that I’m thinking about when I’m writing this post. I’m a man and I believe I am qualified to speak to men in this area. The men who live like this have no honor. Notice how the phrases objectify the subject, usually a woman by reducing them to “That” or “It”. The kind of man that would use those phrases above would be a man who’s predominantly driven by conquest. He’s a predator. His goal is the score. He’s not looking beyond it. What he expects after his little victorious moment is for everything to go back to the way it was before the score. Go hang out with friends and maybe talk about the conquest. Get up. Live life. Nothing changed. Just a hit; just a score; just another notch. No real consequences, at least not for him. No honor. Of course the deception is that you can do the sin and not get the death. Death always rides with sin. As I was thinking on this I wrote down some characteristics of a guy like this. The dishonorable man.

  • His friends are probably not real friends. The friends that push you toward these things does not have your best interest at heart. Some may even try to shame you when your hunt is unsuccessful. These are not real friends. You can’t trust these guys to have your back in a time of trouble.
  • His life will be full of shallow relationships. He will not have many, if any, deep meaningful relationships because his priority will be the physical. He comes around usually for only one reason. He has a wandering eye and is always pursuing the next conquest.
  • He’s a man of no restraint. He may think he’s a tough guy but he’s not. Where it matters, he’s absolutely weak. Every time a temptation or an urge comes up, he caves under it’s weight. He doesn’t exercise any discipline over himself. He’s also prone to losing his temper. When it comes to his feelings and his urges, he just gives in.
  • He leaves blood & guts in his wake. Many, many, many times I’ve seen it where there are young mothers toughing it out on their own because some carnal boy in a man-suit doesn’t have the real honest strength to stand up and be a man. I’m not just talking about standing by your mistake. I’m talking about not making mistakes. Using wisdom. Not taking chances when you are not ready for the result. Let me just say that I believe with all of my heart that God’s grace is there for the single parent. I am convinced that the Holy Spirit is the difference maker and where He’s involved, a single parent family can come through lacking nothing. It’s just not the best way. It’s gonna be a rougher road.

By contrast, the man of honor looks a little different.

  • He is humble. According to Proverbs 22:4, Honor comes by humility and the fear of the Lord (KJV). An honorable man has an honest estimation of himself. He doesn’t think more highly of himself than he aught to think.
  • He follows after what is right. Provers 21:21 (KJV) He that follows righteousness and mercy finds life, righteousness and honor. A man of honor will do what’s right even if it costs him. A man of honor understands that there are things more important than money or being liked and accepted and he values justice and mercy.
  • He avoids strife. Proverbs 20:3 (BBE) It is an honor for a man to keep from fighting, but the foolish are ever at war. A man of honor isn’t out there trying to prove how tough he is.
  • He listens to instruction. Prov 13:18 (BBE) Need and shame will be the fate of him who is uncontrolled by training; but he who takes note of teaching will be honored. I can’t stress this enough. The problem with so many is that they can’t receive correction. It’s sad because many times you have to let them learn through “Hard Knocks University”. They have to take the beating for themselves. It’s foolish to think that we don’t need correction. If that were the case, we would be perfect. That is NOT the case though. When we know we’re not perfect, why do we resist instruction and correction?
  • He pursues wisdom. Prov 4:7-8 says to get wisdom with everything you have. Lift wisdom up and she will promote you. Embrace her and she will bring you honor. Wisdom, the skillful application of knowledge, should be a life-long pursuit. Wisdom sees down the road and makes adjustments for what is coming. A man of honor looks down the road to see the eventual end of his actions. This keeps him from getting girls pregnant. This keeps him out of jail. This keeps him from losing his job. A man of honor pursues wisdom. Wisdom for every area of his life. God has made wisdom available for you to know the next step. Wisdom to resist in areas where you keep falling. Wisdom to rebuild broken relationships. The wisdom is there and the man of honor will seek it out.

Are you in an affair with your problem…or are you in a covenant with your solution? Stir up the gift!  -(AJRK) From Coy Wade.

These are things that are close to my heart. I strive to be a man of honor everyday. It really is a better life. If you have been struggling with the stuff I’ve talked about here, there’s still hope. You can get there. The first thing is that you need a “Want to”. Nothing in your life changes until you are properly motivated to want it. Nothing. How do you make the change? Here are a few short steps to get you moving in the right direction.

  1. Ask for forgiveness. (Click here for more information).  Ask God and if there’s another person, ask them too.
  2. Humble yourself to ask for help. The bible says that God resists the proud but gives grace to the humble. (James 4:6 & 1 Pet 5:5). Grace is the unearned power of God. He wants to give it to you. By humility you recognize that you need His help and then just ask. Jesus said “Ask, and you shall receive, that your joy may be full”.
  3. Trust Him. Believe that He’s on the case. Mark 11: 24.
  4. Let peace rule in your heart and be thankful that He’s helping you. Col 3:15.

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Parenting Guidelines that Made the Difference for Me.

Father Kissing NewbornI have always tried to tow the line when it came to my kids.  If my kids were not allowed somewhere, I didn’t go either.  It was always important to me to not be false or hypocritical to them.  I wasn’t perfect at this but I really tried.  My thinking was that if they couldn’t do it, then I couldn’t either.  As it turned out, this was much easier for me than it was for them.  In a recent conversation that I had with my daughters, they confessed that in school, they often felt like the “weirdoes” because they were not allowed to do and see what many of their friends were allowed to do and see.  While some may see me as too strict, I see me as a parent.  When my children were born, I made a commitment in my heart to be the best dad that I could be.  I decided that it was one of my primary purposes to get them to self sufficient adulthood in the best shape that I could.  For me that meant that I needed to be present in their lives.  I needed to know what they were facing and struggling with.  I needed to hear what they were hearing and see what they were seeing and help them get perspective.


Some parents may argue that I should have let them find their own way and let them decipher the world for themselves.  For a parent to just allow their child to “find their own way” indicates that the parent hasn’t found any truth for themselves that they thought was worthy to be passed on or to be taught to their children.  I have found profound truth in my own life and journey that has made me a new man and shaped my life for the best.  I think that is very worthy to pass on to my children.  I’m not interested in leaving them twisting in the wind, grasping for direction with out my help or guidance.

“Children learn more from what you are than what you teach.”  ― W.E.B. Du Bois

When God chose Abraham, He (God) said “For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment; that the Lord may bring upon Abraham that which He hath spoken of him” Gen 18:19 (KJV).  God chose Abraham specifically because of this.  He knew Abraham would pass it on.  God is looking for parents to pass on the truths that they know to their children. God loves your kids as much as He loves you.  He doesn’t want them hurt & struggling either.  You are in their life to instruct, correct, guide and help them.  Don’t be slack about it.  They need you.

“One of the most important things we adults can do for young children is to model the kind of person we would like them to be.”  – Carol B. Hillman

Deuteronomy 6:6 & 7 (BBE) “Keep these words, which I say to you this day, deep in your hearts; Teach them to your children with all care, talking of them when you are at rest in your house or walking by the way, when you go to sleep and when you get up”.
It’s interesting to me that the Hebrew word for Teach used here means to sharpen, or to whet.  That implies repetitiveness.  When you sharpen a blade, you grind it against a whet stone over and over until you get the keenest edge possible on your blade.  When you’re teaching your children, it involves correction and instruction, over and over, hearing and hearing. This is how confidence comes (see Rom 10:17).

What is the promise for children who hear and follow the Godly instruction of their parents?  Ephesians 6:1-3 tells us. “Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right.  Honor your father and mother (which is the first commandment with promise;) That it may be well with you , and that you may life long on the earth”.
Who doesn’t want that for their children?

What’s the take-away here?  Parents, don’t be afraid to be parents.  Take time to pray for your kids and/or grandkids. Ask God to give you the wisdom and influence to have the maximum impact on their lives for good.  He loves them and has put you in their lives to help them.  That is His will.  He loves you too and He wants to help you be all you can be to your children.

Bill Cosby QuoteI also can’t overstate the importance of being led by the Lord when it comes to being a good parent.  There have been times where I wanted to be corrective to my daughters but sensed a little “check” down in my heart that now was not the time to be corrective.  There have been times when I sensed that I needed to be tougher then I would normally be.  The Lord knows the situation and will steer us.  Dads in particular run the risk of being too heavy handed and can leave their children feeling like they can’t do anything right.  The Lord will help you to know what to do and how to read your situation.

I am not your friend. I am your parent.  I will stalk you, flip out on you. Lecture, drive you insane, be your worst nightmare and hunt you down when needed. Because I Love You. – Seen on a wall hanging.

What has helped you to be a better parent?  What tips can you share that would help other readers in our community?  Please leave your comments and advice.  If this has helped you and you think it can help others, please help spread the word about and also share this post.  Thank you all.  I appreciate you!

Are You Ready To Step Beyond Yourself?

Do you have a giving heart?  A heart that tends toward generosity?  I’m not just talking about giving money to the guy standing at the side of the interstate ramp holding a sign.  I’m talking about having a HEART toward giving where your default setting is generous.  I have an uncle who is very special to me.  He is like that.  His default setting is to help others.  He has served as a great example to me of what a person can do if they only take the time to care about people.

Helping handWe all seem to know people who are not this way.  People who seem to be self absorbed. The “self focused”.  To some the primary concern is how people see me, while others want the latest model car and the house that keeps up with the Jones’.  Most of the time these people only talk about themselves and manage to find ways to always bring the conversation back around to them.  These people do not seem to be interested in others and while they may have thoughts of helping people, they do not have these thoughts very often.  As Michael Hyatt has often said “These people are tuned in to the WIIFM channel.  What’s In It For Me”.

We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give. – Winston Churchill

To have a giving heart, you have to be convinced that God has your back.  If you don’t have an understanding of this, you will have a hard time because you will be torn between being responsible to meet your own needs and reaching out to be selflessly generous to others.  Jesus said in Matthew 6:25,28,31 & 34 that we are to “Take no thought” for the natural things; What we should eat, drink or wear.  He wasn’t saying don’t ever think about these things, but he was saying don’t “Be Anxious” (WEB) about them.  “…for your Heavenly Father knows that you need all of these things.  But seek first God’s kingdom and His righteousness; and all these things will be given to you as well”.  When we understand this and have confidence in our Heavenly Father to meet all of our needs, we can operate from a position of strength.  A position as Heirs.  A position as representatives of the family of God, conducting the Father’s business in the earth.

Having this confidence allows us to step beyond ourselves and operate as the Father would operate.  To truly care about people knowing that as we truly seek His kingdom, He takes personal responsibility for providing what we need.  We have the Father’s heart toward people and really care about them.

Some earmarks of a giving heart are:

  1. A heart that is touched by the need.  Hebrews 4:15 says Jesus himself was touched by the feelings of our feeble flesh.  In contrast, a heart that is calloused by years of me first thinking and selfishness will not see the importance.  Not My Problem. When we read in Isaiah 59 we find that God himself looked and saw that there was no judgment in the earth.  The people needed an intercessor but that one could not be found, so He sent His own son, (His Right Arm), to be an intercessor.  God Himself looked and saw the need and it displeased Him.  A giving heart will be like that in allowing the need to move them to at least pray, and if the Spirit leads, move them to action.
  2. A heart that doesn’t condemn.  People have problems and sometimes our tendency is to look and say “I just don’t know how they could have done that”.  But you are not faced with what they have faced and you are not in their shoes.  It is so important to understand that we should NEVER judge others.  The bible warns that when we judge others we are condemning ourselves.  Why? Because when you judge others, you are saying that you know right and wrong in that situation.  When you blow it, your own words condemn you.  In John 8:11 Jesus asked the woman who was caught in adultery where her accusers were.  “Has no man condemned thee? She said, “No man Lord”.  And Jesus said unto her, “Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more”.  There is more than one lesson here.  Jesus didn’t condemn her, but Jesus also didn’t approve of her sin.  His words were sin no more!
  3. A heart that speaks.  First, a heart that speaks for those who have can not speak.  A heart that is moved to action and to raise awareness.  Second, a heart that speaks to the wounded heart.  You have the power to minister encouragement to the wounded.  You can use your voice to bring words of faith and hope to those who need it most; to take a hand and say “You’re not alone in this”.
  4. A heart that doesn’t wait for someone else to do it.  If we are moved by compassion to help, then don’t wait.  You could be the very answer someone is praying for.  You could be the hands, feet & provision of God to a person in need.  Don’t wait for someone else to do it and miss your opportunity to sow good seeds for a future harvest.
  5. A heart that is willing to be spent.  Paul the Apostle in 2 Corinthians 12 indicated that he didn’t want to be burdensome to the Corinthian church because he didn’t want their stuff, but them.  He said that he would “Very gladly spend and be spent for you…”  A giving heart will spend expecting nothing in return so that others can be blessed.

I challenge you this week to reach out to help someone above and beyond your normal activity.  Step out beyond yourself a little more and see how God will use you to help someone. Take the bridle off of the goodness in your heart and see what happens.  You will be blessed, but you will not be the only one.

That’s what I consider true generosity. You give your all, and yet you always feel as if it costs you nothing. – Simone De Beauvoir

How were you able to help someone this week?  I would love to hear your story.  Join the party and leave a comment.  If you were helped by this and think it could help others, please feel free to share it.