"Man Up"

A few weeks ago, I went to a men’s conference called “Act Like Men”. This was a call out to men in a godly way about stepping up our game and being real men. It was shortly after I returned from that amazing weekend that while picking up my kids from school, I overheard a woman telling another woman that her husband needed to “man up”. I don’t think she was talking about him in a positive light to her friend but the “man up” comment got me thinking.

Ephesians 4:13 until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ,

Here I was coming off of an incredible men’s weekend about stepping up into manhood hood and what being a “man” was all about and then I hear the expression “man up”. I decided to ask around to see what people thought of when they heard that phrase. The reviews were mixed.

Here are some examples:
Don’t be a wimp, be daring, stop being such a complete and utter wuss.
“I can’t believe she dumped me. I have been crying all day.” “Oh be quiet. Quit being a wimp and man up.”

To do hard work without whining about it.
“The other team was much bigger and faster but instead of complaining about it, we just had to man up and play.”

To be (not “act”) mature, to grow up, quit being childish, and to change their ways.
“My husband was not much of a leader at home before going to that Act Like Men conference but he really did man up!”

I decided to dig into this topic a little deeper and I feel the need to share this information because I believe that with it, God will be glorified, our lives will be better, our marriages will thrive instead of crumble, our kids will soar with success, and the world will be a better place. I am as serious as a heart attack here. Some of the information I found was on the urban dictionary. I also found a few websites about “man up”. There is a great website called “The Good Men Project”. I used some of their information here but I chose to focus more on what God’s Word said about this topic.

God is very clear about the seriousness of “man up”

1 Corinthians 13:11 When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways

Let me ask the guys a few questions here. If given the choice between video games and time with your family, what would you choose? Would you be the kind of guy that you would want your son to become or your daughter to marry? Are you showing your wife love passionately and selflessly?

Ephesians 5:25-Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.

Come on guys. Let this be your wake up call. Do the chores around the house. There is no “woman’s” work. Do the laundry or dishes. There is more to being a man than just cutting the grass. Continue to date your wife. Are you leaving notes for her with poems on them? How about sending her flowers for no reason other than you want to show you love her. Sending flowers only on Valentines Day shows her that you aren’t thinking about sending her flowers any other time of the year.

We are also sending the wrong messages out to the world as to what a real man is. The coaches of sports are yelling and shaming the kids. Video games, television, music, and videos are offering our kids wrong lessons to boys who have been abandoned by their fathers. Professional athletes are taking on the roles as heroes and role models to these kids when they can’t even handle their own lives. They are sending the wrong messages!

The entertainment industry is filled with stories of men who refuse to grow up and refuse to take responsibility in relationships. Father figures are portrayed as idiots who couldn’t find their way out of a bag. The family unit portrayed on television has also made it socially acceptable to treat the father figure with zero respect. That needs to change. If that kind of show is coming on in your house, then you need to step up and turn it off. We do not watch that kind of programming in my house and I challenge you to do the same thing. Don’t let your wife and kids think that is ok behavior. Not for one second.

Through all these different and conflicting signals we send to our young boys, they must try to figure out what it means to be a man. Even grown up men are looking in the wrong places for leadership, accountability, and help.

I believe that answer is in God. He has given us all the tools we need to be successful. He sent His one and only Son to die for us on a cross and to show us the way to Him. That’s the great news! Now all we need to do is get into God’s Word and see where we go from here.

Guys love to pursue things. We pursue marriage, sex, an income, an education, toys, life experience…etc. You name it, we’ll go after it. A bored man is a dangerous man, but so is a man in pursuit of the wrong thing.

Hey guys, want to pursue something worthwhile? Pursue God! Pursue a relationship with Jesus Christ and I guarantee you, you will be blessed beyond any other pursuit you could ever imagine.

Godly pursuit takes time though and isn’t always easy. It’s a day by day, breath by breath journey at times, but God will give us the grace to succeed on this walk with Him. Biblical manhood is not something a man “attains” like a diploma after four years of study at the university; rather, it’s a lifelong journey of being and becoming. Yes, godly men “do” certain things, and we could list a thousand of those things. But to then reason that doing those things makes one a godly man, is a huge, huge mistake.

A godly man is a man who is after the heart of God, who longs for God, and whose own heart belongs to God. This is much more than “I gave my heart to Jesus” when I was 12 years old at summer camp. This is a moment-by-moment giving over of our heart, our self, to the Father, to Jesus, to the Holy Spirit, with a hope, a desire, a passion for His glory to be reflected in all we think and do. God is constantly there for us and we need to step up our game to be the men He wants us to be. God is not as concerned about my comfort as He is about my growth.

I am not talking about moral men doing Christian activities. It’s easy to go to church, pancake breakfasts, or occasionally reads his Bible. I am talking about the man who’s actively pursuing a relationship with God, to know God, who feels the burden of leadership at home, who wants to be the man God wants him to be, and who reflects the glory of God in every aspect of his life. Whether that is flipping pancakes, serving in the parking ministry, or reading his Bible.

So where do we start? There are a thousand practical things godly men should do, and some are of greater importance than others. We need to set time aside with each member of our family. We need to “date” our wives. We should be serving. We should be reading books on biblical manhood. But if in doing them we have no greater love for Christ, no growing passion for the glory of God to be revealed through our lives, no sense of a greater connection with the Spirit of God in our lives, no deeper intimacy with the Father, then somewhere we have missed the point and we need to start again.

Let this be our start again point. Let this be our “do-over” point. You with me? Let’s get going! Notice, I said “we”. I can’t do this alone and I need help and accountability.

Proverbs 27:17 Iron sharpens iron, and one man sharpens another.

Here are some ways, not even close to all of the ways, that we need to “man up”
Be a Peacemaker: Whether it’s out at a party on a Saturday night, an afternoon on the park, or at your family holidays, diffuse conflict and be an advocate for the bigger picture.

Be ok with crying: Have the courage to express your emotions publicly and unapologetically; it lets younger guys know it’s okay to have emotions and be sensitive.

Put technology away: Yes, I struggle with this too but it would serve our family best if they have our undivided attention.

Communicate: Openly, humbly, vulnerably, and constructively. Even when you’re scared. Even when it’s really hard. It’s always better than the alternative.

Be a Great Parent: Try your best, actively listen, teach them all you know, read to them, hug them, tell your kids how much they mean to you.

Forgive: Whether it’s the jerk in traffic or your parents, make peace and let go.

Get help: Same rule applies to directions, moving furniture, or struggling with an emotional issue. In fact, we’re all better off when we don’t.

Cook: Nothing brings a woman happiness more than a husband that will cook for her. Show your family that you can provide for them this way. Have some fun with it. If you don’t know how yet, get a basic cookbook and start out simple.

Embrace Fear: Many of the most profound breakthroughs can happen when we face our fear head-on and stop running from it.

Spend Quality Time with your Family: Put down the paper, turn off the smart phone and go play in the backyard.

Lead your family in prayer: Our wives and kids are craving our leadership. We need to be the Pastors of our family. If we don’t lead them, who will? They will find it somewhere else if they are not getting it from us and we don’t want that to happen.

Change a Diaper: Embrace the gift of being able to change a diaper for your child. Yes, it can be brutal at times but don’t think for a second that our wives like it anymore than we do.

Be Flexible: I’m not talking about yoga here. I’m saying to not get caught up in the rules of something that you can’t be willing to alter your expectations of it.

Be Responsible: Whether it’s volunteering to be the designated driver or managing your money, recognize that your precious gift of a life comes with necessary responsibility.

Be a “heart”guy: Have the courage to show how much you care—about your family and friends but also whatever you’re passionate about.

Be Gentle: Sometimes the greatest power exists in a warm hug or soft whisper… other times, simply in a smile.

Be Humble: Be brave enough to follow someone else’s lead. Recognize that you’re part of a much bigger purpose than just you.

Be Healthy: Exercise, eat healthy, get good sleep, lower your stress, and prioritize happiness. This doesn’t mean that you need to run a marathon every day but it shows your family that you want to be here for them. If you don’t take care of your body this way, it shows them you don’t care about being around for a long time with them.

Hold Yourself Accountable: Don’t be too proud to say when you’re wrong or take responsibility when you make a mistake. Learn to say “I am sorry” and mean it when you say it. Find some guys that will also help keep you on track.

Play: I’m not talking about video games by yourself or with your buddies. Have fun and be silly with your family.

Say “I Love You”: Say it to your male friends, female buddies, family, or whoever is most special to you in your life. Let them know how much they mean to you. You never know when it might be your last chance to do so.

Be a kisser: Get over this macho mindset that real men don’t kiss. Kiss your wife in front of your kids. Stop shaking hands with your son and give him a kiss the same you would your daughter.

Recognize that You Are Enough: This world tries to fool us into believing that we were all born inadequate. Love what you got. Celebrate and cherish it. Know that you are beautiful, important, irreplaceable, and powerful.

Joshua 1:9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

There is nothing that we can’t do when we are leaning on God to do it. So here it is guys. Here is your calling to “MAN UP”.

Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.

Come and “LIKE” my Facebook page

God Is My running Partner

Type your email address in the box and click the “create subscription” button. My list is completely spam free, and you can opt out at any time.

Leave a comment