Last night while taking our students through Ruth, we came across the passage in 4:1-12 where Boaz meets with the Redeemer to find out if he will marry Ruth or if the other man will. As I was prepping for the lesson, I was struck by the example of manhood that Boaz displayed in this. And as the preparation matured, it became obvious that last night was a call for manhood to our guys. The starting place for spiritual leadership in the church and home isn't age, experience, degrees, or whether or not you can shave. It's being a man. Being a godly man means being responsible and being committed.
Responsibility is when you as a man own up to your faith, yourself, and you're willing to be accountable for what you do. Responsibility is lacking when too many "adults" want to pass the blame higher up the chain, rather than own it. It happens when someone becomes a father but fails to be a dad. I see this so often in student ministry where the dad is too consumed with himself, video games, a bigger truck, or chasing after his hobbies that he fails to do the task God gave him: cultivate the ground (work hard) and be fruitful (be a husband and dad). Boaz took on responsibility he didn't have to, but he willingly took on. That's what Christ has done for us. Romans 5 reminds us that Christ died for us while we were still His enemies. Being a man is being radical. And being radical today means spending time in your Bible, working hard, building a family, investing in your wife and kids, mowing your yard, and serving your church.
A godly man is committed because his effort isn't based on convenience or what he can get out of it. Rather, it's a matter of integrity for him to finish what he started. Sadly that doesn't happen everyday when men walk away from their wife and kids because they're not "happy" anymore. Or when a man walks away from his role as provider and protector to "chase his dreams." Too many men today are like kids signing up for baseball or getting a puppy, it sounds great at first and there's initial excitement, but once the reality sets in they try to find a way out. To be the spiritual leader in a church, or more importantly in your home, requires that you make the firm commitment that you will see your task through. Fellas, that means you don't get to claim "Me time" because when your job obligations are done, your wife and kids need you to be Husband and Dad with them. Being a man means sacrifice, service, and generosity. That's what separates a godly man from a guy.
Scott M. Douglas
A blog about leadership and the lasting legacy of family ministry.