I created the following picture on my iPad Mini for my sweet wife, Valerie.
Because I love her 🙂
I created the following picture on my iPad Mini for my sweet wife, Valerie.
Because I love her 🙂
Since it is a topic of hot debate these days, I figured I would keep the boat floating in the stream a little while longer and write a little more about the subject of masculinity.
Except today I’m going to do it from a laptop in the passenger seat behind my wife while she’s driving – it’s a long trip.
And I’m going to do with with pictures – like the one I just took of my computer before I typed this sentence 🙂
By the way, as of this moment, after nearly 10 years of blogging, I’m only at 49% of my memory limit with WordPress, so I’m not worried about the amount of photos in this post.
Anyway, I was thinking about masculinity and how it’s displayed, and that’s when I decided to search back through my phone’s photos. I thought it would be interesting to post some pictures from my life and share what I though was “masculine” or “manly” about them.
Some of these photos might fit a stereotype you don’t like. Some may make you scratch your head. But if I was to tell a young boy what it means to be a man, and if I could show him through some of my own pictures, this is what I would say.
And please understand, I’m not trying to make this all about me… I’m just making observations.
I’m just glad I had a dad that taught me what it meant to be a man. He was a consistent, loving, meek, humble, trustworthy, honorable, hard-working, self-sacrificing, faithful husband and man of God.
That’s about all I’ve got to say. Hope you’ve enjoyed the pictures.
Have you ever had so much to write, but being sleepy, tired, worn out and ready for bed kept you from it?
Have you ever wanted to launch into the deep waters of controversial topics only to realize the sails of your little boat were too tattered to catch the wind?
Well, that’s about how I feel right now. I’m tired, sleepy, and I need to get up early in the morning.
However, I saw a bumper sticker today that really got my goat, so I have to say something.
You see, just tonight I was going through a small book that was given to me by a Muslim “apologist,” and my head is still spinning from all the twisted scripture he used to “prove” his obscenely ignorant arguments. The former Baptist converted to Islam, then he wrote a book meant to “prove” that Jesus never claimed to be God nor died on the cross.
If there was one verse taken out of context, there were ten. If there were ten times he made ignorant inferences, there were a hundred where he proved nothing more than that he never studied the Bible as a Baptist, much less as a Muslim.
Maybe, just maybe, if this man had spent more time in the Word of God studying what it actually said instead of being caught up in some social or racial “gospel,” he might have never fallen victim to the foolishness he now believes.
And that’s where the above bumper sticker comes in… It’s about the most useless attempt at profundity I’ve ever seen; it makes no sense whatsoever.
You may think that “Jesus [loves] Feminists” is a wonderful truth, but let’s take a moment or two to unpack it.
First of all, Jesus loves feminists. Yes, He does.
However, Jesus also loves prostitutes and murderers, so what’s the point?
Jesus loves sinners, and that’s why He went to an old, rugged cross to suffer and die for the sins of the world. “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).
Are feminists sinners? Is that what they’re saying?
Or, is the bumper sticker implying that Jesus loves feminists, but not chauvinists? Is it saying that Jesus prefers tree-hugging egalitarians over traditionally conservative complementarians? Does Jesus love some people and not others? Is that the point?
On the other hand, maybe it’s simply trying to say that Jesus loves feminists, also. Like, Jesus loves the chauvinists, the complementarians, the macho men, AND the feminists.
If that’s the case, then Jesus loves everybody, right? So what’s the point of the bumper sticker?
Unfortunately, the above bumper sticker does nothing glorify the love of Christ. All it does is pander to those who need to be affirmed.
Truth is lost in ambiguity; the reader learns nothing.
What a doctrinally worthless bumper sticker!
I did say I was tired, didn’t I?
And just for fun… watch “What it’s like to date a feminist in 2018.” https://www.facebook.com/allieCRTV/videos/1986330614991509/
(Please send all your hateful and angry comments to Wally Fry – he’s got far more energy than me)
Let me start off by saying that I am not going to be writing about the biblicality of taking up serpents during a church service. The purpose of this post is not to run down and disparage anyone’s heartfelt religious belief. I’m not here today to call someone an idiot for doing something that is clearly foolish – that could be another post for another day.
Right now let’s just pray for Cody Coots. I mean, just four years ago his father, the former pastor, died (age 42) after being bitten by a rattlesnake – only five minutes after being bitten in the hand during a worship service.
Now, the young Pastor Coots – the still-living pastor of Full Gospel Tabernacle In Jesus Name Church – is recovering from a near-fatal bite to the ear from a rattlesnake (click HERE to see the video). Sadly, there must have been sin in his life, the fact made unfortunately obvious right when a bunch of cameras from a world-famous news organization were filming.
That must have been a bummer. We really need to pray for him and his health, and his family.
But, like I said, this post isn’t about Pastor Coots’ religious beliefs or health – it’s about his poor sweet wife and all the other ladies out there who might be concerned with marrying a snake-handling preacher.
What I want to do for now is offer a little advice to the lovelorn, the lovesick, and those blinded by love. You see, what really got me about the story of Pastor Cody Coots is what his wife, Tammy said:
“Me and Cody didn’t talk about religion until after we got married and all I said is, ‘God, what did I get myself into?'” (source: The Sun)
You were introduced by a relative, then you immediately fell in love, but you didn’t know anything about what he believed? You had no idea he went to a snake-handling church?
I mean, seriously, Tammy, what did you do for dates. go out hunting Copperheads? You visited his garage and saw cases of snakes, and thought what? Or did you even visit his home? Didn’t you think it wise to visit your prospective groom’s church just once before walking down the aisle? During the wedding rehearsal, did you think the rattling sound was from a wedding present?
Why only after you got married did you ask, “God, what have I gotten myself into”?
That being said, I feel obligated to spare future Tammy’s from the fear of losing one’s husband to the venom of a faith-testing rattler from heaven.
Well, I hope this helps. There’s no need for you to get into a marriage only to say the first Sunday, “God, what have I gotten myself into?”
Commentssssssssss would be nicccccccce 😉
Today (June 18th) my wife (Valerie) and I have been married 24 years. Hard to believe we’ve been together that long. In reality, we’ve been “together” for 26 years, but the first two we were dating, then engaged.
Next year will be the big 25, and I don’t have any time to spare in getting ready for it. We went to Disney World on our honeymoon, and that’s where we want to go next year – with the whole family! Donations WILL be excepted…better believe it.
Anyway, as I was sitting here doing some reading and studying in order to answer a question about prayer from a fellow blogger, another question randomly popped into my head:”What has kept us married for 24 years, if not simply prayer?”
Well, prayer has been an indispensable part of the glue, that’s for sure, but there are other things, too. Therefore, this evening I’m going to share them with you in hopes of helping your marriage and strengthening mine.
But that’s not all! I’m starting with my list, then I’m going to bring Valerie (my wife) into this with her thoughts!
God. First and foremost. Without divine intervention, I’m sure Valerie and I would have either ended up divorced at some point…or simply dead. Don’t think I’m being facetious, either; I’m being very serious. There have been more times than I can count that the Lord has worked miracles, moved mountains, guided circumstances, and healed incurable wounds with the Balm of Gilead. If nothing else and no one else, we owe our marriage to the One before whom we made our vows.
Commitment. If you want to know a dirty little secret, there have been times when my wife has said, “The only reason you’re still here is because you made a commitment!” Well, yeah, that’s true. But you know what? Whatever happened to making a vow and keeping it? There will be times in life when the only thing that will keep you trudging through is your promise, your word. If your word means nothing, then you’re marriage will certainly fail.
Our Witness. You see, my wife and I are unashamedly Christian. Everything we do – we believe – should bring glory and honor to God. Even when there were difficult times, we still wanted other people to know about Jesus. Therefore, we have stayed together through the worst of times if for no other reason than to be an example of God’s faithfulness to us.
Faithfulness. It may seem like a no-brainer, but staying faithful to each other and guarding against unfaithfulness should be an every-day commitment. Don’t expect your marriage to last when you start sampling the water from other wells. And here’s a little FYI… when your spouse gets too thirsty, don’t think he/she isn’t going to be tempted by a fountain in the desert. Know what I mean?
A Well-Watered Garden. Keep the grass green on your own side of the fence.
Forgiveness. Folks, we all fail. My wife isn’t perfect, but I’m less perfect. As a matter of fact, I’m a regular mess. If we didn’t learn to forgive each other we’d both be in a world of continual hurt.
Putting the Other First. It might sound funny, but my wife and I have actually gotten into fights (verbally, of course) over trying to please the other one! “Where do you want to eat?” can spark arguments even when all you want to do is be thoughtful! However, pride, putting yourself first, and always wanting to get your own way will end in real disaster.
Children. I don’t want to get too deep into this one, but having children has done a lot for keeping us married 24 years. For one thing, my wife was a child of divorce, resulting in abuse, emotional trauma, and a lot of unfortunate baggage. The last thing we wanted our three girls to endure was another broken family. We had to break the cycle. You do a lot and endure a lot for your kids, you know.
Church families. I can’t stress enough how much belonging to and regularly attending a church has meant to us. So many times, when there was nowhere else to turn, God used our church families to come alongside us with love, compassion, and support.
Love. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not just talking about emotional fluff or sensuality; I’m talking about the kind of love that’s expressed as a verb. Love is not a thing; it’s something you DO.
Listen to Your Wife! Yeah, this is a guy’s responsibility, but it’s important. Men, listen to her. She has a lot more to say than you do, and you want to be the one she talks to when she’s concerned, hurt, lonely, angry, etc. Did you get what I said? YOU want to be the one she talks to. If you don’t listen to her, who do you think will? Oh, and take that “woman’s intuition” stuff seriously – it’s real.
Patience. Anthony has more patience than me. Actually, he’s the most patient person I know – it’s both a blessing and irritating at the same time.
Empathy. Even when something doesn’t necessarily bother me, it hurts me to see my husband hurt. I hurt when he hurts, but when he hurts when I hurt, that makes me love him even more. When we empathize with each other we learn a little better to see things from the other’s perspective and feel their heart.
Understanding. Even when Anthony doesn’t understand something, he takes the time to listen and try to understand, which lets me know he loves me and makes me love him. Sometimes you have to try to see things from the other person’s perspective, which leads to a better understanding. There is always more ways to see the same thing, and marriage requires both of us to take a step back, at times, and imagine ourselves in each other’s shoes. Trying to understand the other by listening and putting yourself in their position is loving them.
Shopping. I don’t like to shop. I don’t like to clothes shop, Christmas shop, or anything like that. I don’t like grocery shopping most of all! I know it runs contrary to the stereotype, but I just don’t like shopping! But when Anthony says he’ll go with me shopping – even though I know he probably hates shopping more than me – it puts pep in my step and joy in my heart.
Doing things I like to do even though he doesn’t like to do them. Or, to put it another way, Anthony watches the “chick flicks” with me and rarely even complains – sometimes he even cries! There are times I’ll even say “yes” to the war movie. The thing is, once we start watching the other’s movie, we often find out we like it. It’s when the other one asks to participate in something that we should stop and think about how often the other person did something with us, even when he didn’t want to. Simply being nice and thoughtful can make a marriage last a long time.
My wife and I are not marriage counselors, but we’ve got a lot of marriage experience. We’ve also seen a lot of marriages fail when they could have lasted. All they would have needed was to do what we’ve shared above.
Marriage is tough. Marriage is work. Marriage is not for the faint of heart. But marriage is a gift. Marriage is a calling. Marriage is meant to be a symbol to the world of God’s love and faithfulness to us.
For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church. – Ephesians 5:30-32 KJV
If you’re married right now, know you are in the Enemy’s sights, and he wants nothing less than for you to fail in your commitment to each other. Hang in there. Be strong. Love each other with a Christ-like, cross-bearing love. Stay on your knees. Give God the glory.
Oh, and always have a sense of humor. Laugh.
And then you’ll have what it takes to stay married.
My wife has been out of town for a whole week visiting our oldest daughter in Charleston, South Carolina. On Sunday afternoon I will be picking her up at our local airport, and I’m looking forward to it.
You see, I love my wife. I miss my wife. I want her back at home.
I know men who tolerate their wives. I know a couple of men who hate their wives. I’m not like those men; I love my wife.
Why am I telling you this? Why am I writing a blog post about it? Because sometimes a person needs to know they’re loved. Sometimes a man needs to be a man and say, “This is my wife, and I love her.”
No, it’s not Valentine’s Day. No, it’s not our anniversary, or her birthday, or anything like that. I just love my wife, and I’ll be glad to have her home again.
Sir, do you love your wife? Ma’am, do you love your husband? Why not take a moment and say so? I’m afraid wedon’t say it – or show it – enough. Maybe our marriages would be a little stronger and a little sweeter if we did.
I love you, Valerie. I just wanted you to know.
“As a married man with daughters ages, it becomes evident that it’s not his mind that goes; it’s that he acquires the ability to randomly change it.” – A. Baker