“Manning Up”

We’ve all heard the term, or been told to, “Man Up.” It’s usually a reference to “stop whining.” In that context, even if it’s true, it’s shallow at best. In the context of a lifestyle free from unwanted sexual behaviors or habitual sexual sin, it goes a whole lot deeper.

When God needs me to “get something” He usually has to show it to me several times, using unrelated sources in unrelated circumstances, so I can’t miss it. I can almost see “that” fatherly look on his face. You know the one. His eyes exuding unfathomable love as only He can, but the rest of His face saying, “Greg. Now? Are you listening?”  It’s incredibly loving; it’s also incredibly attention getting.

This week, He’s gotten very determined that I hear Him – through men I mentor, devotionals, solicited emails and even an UNsolicited email. If that’s not God I don’t know what is.

The untimely death of my father left a “father hole” in my heart that caused me a great deal of pain for the majority of my life. In 2015, God showed me that HE could and He would fill that hole if I’d let Him. I did and He did. The hole is filled with the perfect Father in Heaven. Another miracle? Possibly. He did not, in His infinite Wisdom, choose to miraculously imbue me with the knowledge of what it takes to be a Man. In his YouVersion devotional study, “Wild Life”, John Eldredge makes the statement, “Validation as a man can only come from a masculine source. Femininity does not bestow masculinity.” As a child, I missed that training. Try as hard as she could, it wasn’t something my mom could give me.

This week’s song is about a Battle. A battle belonging to God. It’s been playing all week; it just keeps coming up no matter what station I’m on. The solicited email I got was from Chuck Swindoll who was telling me about Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego. ‘“… times in which it is essential to say, “Lord, this is Your battle. Please, You take this for me;” and other times when the issue is such that we say, “Even if I must stand alone, I will stand. Even if it means I will be beaten to the death, I will take that, because an issue greater than all is at stake.”’ The unsolicited email was from Kyle Thompson at Undaunted.Life. He hosted a podcast featuring John Eldredge which is linked below for you. I thought it spot on in light of what God is apparently trying to show me.

Podcast with Kyle Thompson & John Eldredge

I’ve made a lot of changes to who I am in the last six years. I’ve learned a lot about V-T-H (Vulnerability, Transparency, Honesty), responsibility, emotions, grace, humility, brokenness. I’ve grown closer to my Heavenly Father, Jesus & Holy Spirit than I ever dreamed possible. I sometimes still feel that something is missing. That I’m still not getting it. Then I realized, if I’m not getting it, who else in my sphere of influence isn’t getting it? Thus, my first blog back after an extended hiatus, is close to my heart. Let’s see where God takes us.

Freedom is a gift from God. It is also His Promise; and He ALWAYS keeps His Promises.

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