Saturday, November 3, 2012

Marks of a Mature Man - Minister Onorio

A man is patient and kind. He is not envious or boastful or proud or rude. A man does not demand his own way. He is not irritable, and he keeps no record of being wronged. A man does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. He never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.

Some of you recognize portions of 1 Corinthians 13.

I think it is appropriate to define Christian manhood this way. After all the mark of Christian maturity is our love of God and others. And the opposite of maturity is childishness.

Here are some marks of childishness based on 1 Corinthians 13:
  • Impatient
  • Unkind
  • Envious
  • Rude
  • Self-seeking
  • Easily angered or offended
  • Delights in evil
These are some marks of maturity:
  • Patient
  • Kind
  • Cultured/Refined
  • Humble & Giving
  • Self-control
  • Delights in Righteousness
  • Protects
  • Trusts God
  • Hopes in God
  • Perseveres
These words describe the characteristics of love. And love isn’t just a verb. Love is a noun. Love is a person. Love is synonymous with God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

When I look at these two lists I’m deeply convicted. I really fall short. I think about how impatient I can be with my children. I think about how rude I can be when I’m “interrupted.” I remember how easily I can be offended.

But God’s love also moves me to prayer. I pray to persevere and not give up. I pray to trust God always through every circumstance. I pray for wisdom and strength to protect my family and others.

I am moved to hope in God’s love. Because God so loved me that he gave his one and only Son to die for me. And because I believe in the Son, I won’t perish, I can continue to move forward, I have eternal life. This is a gift I couldn’t earn and didn’t deserve but I receive it by faith and learn to live in a new way. It is God working in me to will and to love. God’s love died for me and gave me a new identity.

Love isn't typically associated with masculinity. That needs to change. We need the world to know that manhood and love are synonymous.

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