Thursday, March 10, 2011
Vince's Ramblings on Manhood...
It is day 2 of Lent and let me tell you I have not missed using facebook or surfing the net one bit. I think it is because of the preoccupation of this upcoming weekend. This upcoming weekend is a men's retreat that I, together with my good friends Ian and Raynard, are putting on for the men of our Church community.
What the heck could you possibly talk about at a men's retreat? Isn't talking something of an enigma to men? True... many of our conversations with those we love can end up in grunts and "yeps" and "mm hmm". I am certainly guilt of those. But I am a person that believes that we can always improve. I am not satisfied with my "yeps" and "mm hmms", and I want to become a better man for not just myself and my God, but for my wife and my future son. In my research for this retreat I hit a pretty astounding realization:
Men, unless through intervention and transformation, become their fathers.
Wow. In this one particular book I was reading, this point was emphasized over and over. A child learns through the example of his parent, and they are far more likely to do as a father does than what a father tells him to do. Pretty crazy. Men in particular are extremely influenced by the leadership (or lack of) of another man. As boys we yearn to be like our fathers, and when we don't have them things can go pretty sketch.
And in a generation where positive examples of male role models are going out the window, I would say the little boys of this world desperately need men to emulate so that they can become the men they are meant to be: Men that love immensely.
I am pretty sure that boy never plans on becoming like this guy.
But... because of so many factors - and one of them being the absence of a solid male role model to form you, coupled with the lack of conviction to be a better man - a boy is capable of becoming the most detestable of men (sorry Charlie, I know you are a good person deep down inside).
I firmly believe that men all over need to reclaim their masculinity. And I believe that masculinity is more than just spitting, playing poker, grunting and throwing clubs around. Call me old fashion, but I believe that authentic masculinity is the harnessing and implementation of those strengths that are unique to a man, such as: sacrificial servant leadership, desire to protect the defenseless, integrity, discipline, and more.
Some men I talk to ask me how the world has gotten so bad.
I answer them with this question, "Why have we let it?"
Anyways... that is what is happening this weekend. There are about 17 of us men going and we have high hopes. I'll be sure to post some pictures!
Vince and Cay