He Asked Me…“Zo, What Does It Mean To Be A Man?”

Originally Posted Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Has anyone ever asked you such a pointed question? I don’t remember asking anyone that question at any age. The one who asked me that question is a young man who is turning 15 years old in our community. He was a former basketball player that I coached here a couple of years ago.

I finished cutting his hair in my home one night when he asked me that question. After I finished cutting his hair, we were eating some fried chicken before taking him back to his house. Then, out of the blue, the question popped up out of nowhere, while he was eating with his mouth full.

“Zo…what does it mean to be a man?”, he asked unashamedly.

I thought to myself, “What a loaded question! What a sincere question! What a curious question…especially from a 15 year old.”

I responded encouragingly, “Wow…that’s a great question!” After that, I don’t remember all that I said- spontaneous preaching began:-).

But what I do remember telling him was that being a man is never an achieved goal…a man is always “becoming a better man”. There’s no such thing as “I’m a man now…I made it.” No! A man is always growing and improving in manhood.

“I’m 36 years old and I’m still learning what it means to be a man. Just a few days ago the Lord revealed to me that I am “responsible” for my wife and children’s wellbeing,” I said humbly. “I feel like God wants me to step up even more in being a responsible man for His glory,” I added. “And every day I need to be reminded of the responsibility of the man that Jesus made me to be. Without the examples of the men (especially Jesus) and the constant pushing of me to “man up” and take personal responsibility of the things God has given me without making excuses, I could never grow as a man.

No one grows into manhood without other men (and women) pushing and encouraging us to become one…whether through verbal challenges or manly examples!

I ended our conversation when we arrived to his house saying, “And God has given me the opportunity to be a man to encourage you in your God given calling of being a man. You’re surrounded by godly men! God has placed all these men (men at Strong Tower, Common Ground, in the community, etc.) as examples for you to follow…they love Jesus, righteousness, their wives, children, work, and community. You asking me this question says you want to grow in manhood. You will be a good man. You are a good young man. Keep up the good work.

He left smiling and affirmed.

Wow…what a question to ask!

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