Manhood is under attack and has been for quite awhile now. Here are five of the many lies our culture has been preaching to us about manhood:
Lie #1: Men are stupid. How many sitcoms or movies have a smart dad or son in it? More often than not, male figures are portrayed as dumb and inferior to female figures in regards to both intellect and wisdom. One of my favorite shows growing up was Boy Meets World (confession: I own every single season). The show is filled with classic characters and lines. However, the one major issue I have with the show is that almost every young man in the show is portrayed as dumb. On the flip side, when a young man does excel in school, the other boys mock and ridicule him (ex: Stuart Minkus). However, I do appreciate that the Gandalf-like character Mr. Feeny is not only the students’ scholastic teacher in the show but also their life teacher.
Lie #2: Men are unnecessary. The Pussycat Dolls 2005 pop hit, “I Don’t Need a Man” says it all. Today, men have been devalued from necessary to optional. Aside from the rather obvious procreational necessity for men, there are numerous other reasons why men are needed especially in the lives of children. Accord to the National Fatherhood Initiative, kids are more likely to live in poverty, be abused, possess emotional and behavioral issues, fall into crime, drug and alcohol abuse, suffer from childhood obesity, and struggle in school if their biological father does not stay married and committed to their family.
Lie #3: Men are unreliable. Unfortunately, this is the reputation and the expectation that many have of men. However, God calls men to lead, provide for, and protect their families and homes. Why would God call men to serve in such a role that they are incapable of doing? God calls men to rely on His power which then empowers them to be reliable to others.
Lie #4: Men are sex-crazy. “Men don’t want a relationship; they just want sex.” More and more, however, the case is being made that women are not much different. Sex and the City, Magic Mike, Fifty Shades of Grey; the sexual appetite of women is being put on blast throughout pop culture. Here’s the deal: sex is not bad. Both men and women were created with sexual desires. God created sex and gave it to married couples as a gift for the couple to both enjoy and grow closer to each other.
Lie #5: Men are physical, violent, fighters. The stereotype paints men as being obsessed with football, guns, camping, bacon, war, fighting and getting buff among other things. Real men can bench at least their body weight, right? Real men threaten to kick another man’s butt if that man gives him a dirty look, right? Wrong. I’ll just own this: if these are the attributes of a man, then I am the furthest from being one. Yes, real men are fighters but not necesarily the way we customarily envision them to be. Jesus actually calls men to lower their fists rather than raise them in the face of hostility and adversity (Matt 5:39). Towards the end of his life, Paul wrote to a young pastor that he mentored for years named Timothy to encourage him not to give up but to continue fighting the good fight of faith in Jesus (1 Tim 6:12). Instead of simply fighting in a physical manner, godly men are called to fight for justice and to stand up for the kingdom and cause of Jesus.