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Be A Man

Uncategorized Mar 29, 2024

Note: This is a 3 part email sequence, all the 3 parts have been compiled in this blog post. Each email is separately labeled.

(1/3) Be A Man – You Are The Head of The Home


We're about to tackle a HUGE subject in this month's sequence – masculinity. Buckle up.

In high school, I had a classmate named Joseph (name has been altered for confidentiality's sake).

Joseph was a big dutch boy – 6'5", thick & strong, and sideburns that would put Wolverine to shame.

While he was large and in charge on the outside, he was a softy inside. A really tender-hearted, kind dude.

Joseph got married, he and his wife had a kid.

One day, his wife informed him that she no longer wanted to be a woman. She wanted to be a man.

So she went through treatments, procedures, etc. Joseph was now married to a man with whom he had a child with when the man was previously a woman.

Then one day, Joseph decided he didn't want to be a man anymore. He identified more with the feminine.

So he went through treatments, procedures, etc.

Joseph was now Josephine (name has been altered for confidentiality's sake, but you gotta admit - that's pretty clever. Now you know why I chose Joseph as the moniker).

Well wouldn't you know it, not too long after, Josephine's husband (who once was her/his wife), decided he's not enjoying being a man and wants to revert back to being a woman.

I couldn't make this story up if I wanted to. I'm dizzy just trying to keep track of the pronouns!

To my knowledge, Josephine hasn't changed teams again. But who knows what the future holds.

There's a point to all of this...

Our society has lost the concept of gender.

When you dilute a critical concept like gender, you also dilute everything that comes with it – family structure, identity, and roles & responsibilities.

Call me old-fashioned.
Call me crazy.
Call me a radical conservative...

I still believe in gender roles.

Now, I want to be clear.

I don't think gender roles are primarily about who cooks, cleans, works, etc.

I do have some opinions about those things, but they're nominal compared to the real meat of this conversation.

Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. 24 Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything. – Ephesians 5:22-23

It is so tempting to dilute this scripture today because saying the husband is head of the wife is a seemingly outlandish statement that offends the masses...

But truth is truth. 

Now here's the problem...there is a reason society has revolted against male authority. Men have abused it.

Men have become power-trippers, control freaks, hypocrites and bad leaders.

And people got sick of it. Namely, women.

It's hard to blame them.

BUT, the solution here is not to blur the lines between gender so that we don't have to deal with men and their issues.

Rather, it's time for men to step up and be the leaders in society God has designed them to be.

So what does it mean to be the head of the home?

Let's take a look...

A man without a vision is no man at all. Whether you are single, married, a father or not, you must have vision for your life.

I see a lot of men not leading their homes because they have no vision. And as we know, where there is no vision, the people (your family) perish (Prov 19:18).

Have a vision for your life. Write it down. Graph it. Do what you gotta do.

Men have become passive. We are too quiet, too easily persuaded, and too conflict-avoidant.

I'm preaching to the choir here – I have lots of room to grow in this area.

Don't give in to the narrative that your voice doesn't matter. Not only does it matter, your home falters without it.

There's a really useful metaphor in Ephesians 5 that provides some criteria for whether or not we are operating appropriately as the head of our home. 

The scripture says we are the head of the home as Christ is head of the church. That statement terrifies me. That's a BIG standard.

Christ's love for the church is unwavering, consistent, expressive, and most notably of all for the sake of this email – selfless.

Jesus always has His people's best interest in mind. We are to do the same for our wives and family.

Men are too quick to highlight the "wives submit to your husbands" part of the scripture above. They think this means their wife should just submit because she's the wife.

Let's reframe this. If you are a Christian, and you've given your life to Jesus, it's submitted to Him, right? (Not a trick question - answer yes).

Now when things aren't going your way in life, and you can't figure out what God is doing, would it be appropriate to no longer submit?

Of course not. Why?

Presumably because Jesus is worthy of trust. And even in the moments where you can't see what He's doing, you stay submitted because you trust Him, right?

Submission = Trust Beyond Understanding.

So if our wives are to submit to us – then we must prove ourselves worthy of submission. We must be trustworthy. 

That means we follow through on things.
It means we listen intently when she shares.
And it means we tell the truth, always.

I don't know about you but I'm a bit tired of hearing stories like Josephine's. 

We don't need more watered down men in our world. In fact we need the opposite.

It's time for men to rise up, stand up, and step into their God-given identities.

Tomorrow, we're going to talk about whether or not men's emotions matter. (Spoiler Alert: They do).

In the meantime, if you want to dive deeper in the subject, I interviewed Josh Khachadourian about Biblical Masculinity a while back and he shared some absolute fire (he actually did a private session with our clients last week that was even better but I can't share that one ;)).

Here's the podcast interview, enjoy :)


(2/3) Be A Man – Do Your Emotions Really Matter?

Alright brother,

Here's Take 2 on this vital subject of masculinity. Let's dive in.

I've told the story before about the passing of my dear friend, Chucky, in high school.

Chucky's death was one of 3 suicides I encountered in my teen years. 

I still remember my Dad breaking the news to me, the overwhelm, and a critical inner decision that nearly cost me my entire well-being.

I grew up in an Indian home.

In Indian culture, showing emotions is a sign of weakness. It makes the auntys and uncles uncomfortable.

So in general, it's better to just keep your emotions quiet.

Most of my friends growing up were of Dutch reformed backgrounds (it was like being a chocolate chip in a bowl of rice).

Those cultures frown just as hard on emotions. Especially if you're a man.

Women can be emotional, but men need to be "strong".

So when Chucky died, I felt like this was my chance to showcase my 14-year-old manliness, and I made a quiet but powerful vow:

I Will Not Cry.

That was my ambition.

Was I devastated? Of course.

Was I upset? Yes.

Confused? Definitely!

But you would not see me crying. No siree Bob. 

I regret to inform you that I was successful, and my vow to keep all of the many emotions I was experiencing under wraps lasted several years.

During those years, I became very rigid, unempathetic, and numb.

P*rn became a huge vice of mine, it was truly one of the only ways I could "feel" anything. 

It was almost 10 years after Chucky died that I realized my emotional neglect was costing me my well-being, intimacy in my relationships, and even closeness with God.

You see, I was looking to the left and the right trying to find out whether or not it was okay for me to have emotions and express myself that way.

I should've been looking in the Bible.

Most men in the Bible, especially the memorable ones, are super emotional!

David is top of the list – he was exuberant and wildly expressive.

In Paul's epistles to the many churches he led feature a vast array of emotions from anger to gladness towards the people he was writing to.

Nearly all of the major and minor prophets are deeply emotive in their writings.

Jesus himself was unafraid to express his emotions. He wept at the death of Lazarus (Jn 11:35), flipped tables at the synagogue in anger (Mt 21:12), and rejoiced when Peter identified Him as the Christ, the son of God (Mt 16:17).

There's something I've learned over the years about emotions, sexuality, deep desires, etc...

It's in you for a reason.

God has given us emotions – whether you're a man or a woman or unsure (that's mostly a joke). 

Our responsibility is to manage them appropriately.

Suppressing emotions is not it.

Only expressing anger is not it.

There is a whole slew of emotions that we feel in any given moment of any given day. They all matter.

And if we fail to handle them responsibly, we end up coping with porn, alcohol, social media, Netflix, gambling, drugs, work, etc.

I was watching The Voice with my wife the other day. One of the coaches on the show is John Legend, the famous singer and artist.

He was talking about how as a guy, he didn't cry a lot. Until he became a dad.

I really resonate with that. My son brings me to tears often, and it's usually for very simple and basic things (he's only 5 months old at the time of this writing).

In the past, I would've been embarrassed about having those kinds of emotional reactions, but early on in fatherhood I remembered something.

My Dad cried at MANY of my accomplishments as a young boy – even at my Grade 8 graduation!

I remember one time, when I was 11 years old, I played keyboard at church to accompany a duet being sung by some very seasoned singers in the congregation.

The song was written by my Dad.

Afterwards, my Dad came up to me, hugged me, and through a shaky voice and with tears in his eyes told me he was proud of me.

The times my Dad was most emotional with me are the ones I remember the most fondly.

To the fathers - there's a lesson in there for you.

But to men at large, I want you to hear something as well.

Not only do your emotions matter.
Not only are you to pay them careful attention so that you don't fall into the traps of porn and other addictions.

But your loved ones who long to know you, see you and connect with you NEED your emotions. They need to know they're there, and that you're a human.

Not just anger.

They need to see the gladness, the sadness, the disgust, the fear and the surprise. 

Having these emotions is not a sign of weakness. It's a measurement of strength.

Not just in expressing them, but MANAGING them effectively (in my program, we call this being "emotionally fit").

So yes, your emotions matter. And moreover, your well-being depends on your ability to manage them responsibly.

If you want some help with that, here's some material from my podcast that you might find interesting.

Tomorrow, I'm going to explain why understanding gender roles (email 1) and responsibly handling emotions (email 2) mean VERY little unless they are anchored appropriately. You'll see what I mena.

PS. On my podcast we answer listener questions live on-air — if you have a question about faith, recovery or masculinity, click here.


(3/3) Be A Man, But Don't Be Like Eldrick

Eldrick Tont was a child prodigy, the likes had never been seen.

He was talented beyond his years, driven like none other, and ridiculously charismatic.

There was a good chance he could become the GOAT (Greatest of All Time) in his industry.

Few child prodigies live up to the hype.

Between adolescence, adulthood and the many developments that take place physically and mentally, things start to peter out.

Not Eldrick.

In fact, with each birthday and stage of life, Eldrick got better and better.

By the time he was in high school, Eldrick was internationally recognized.

Early into adulthood, he turned pro and began to DESTROY his competition, many of whom were twice his age and experience.

Eldrick was a world phenomenon. Queue the endorsements, the brand deals, and the mega-million dollar contracts.

Not only was he wildly successful in his sport, Eldrick was a family man. He had a beautiful wife and two children whom he loved dearly.

One day in 2009, news broke that Eldrick was in a car accident. It turns out he was behind the wheel under the influence of alcohol.

"Nobody's perfect" the world thought. Everyone was ready to give Eldrick a pass.

Then they found out the car was crashed in his neighborhood, while his wife was chasing him down the street.

Something wasn't adding up...

It turns out that Eldrick was a serial adulterer and major sex addict. For years he was having affairs left, right and center, and finally got caught.

The woman chasing him down the road was Elin Nordgren.

The sport this man dominated for many years was the game of golf.

You may better know him as Eldrick Tont Tiger Woods.

Just Because Your Life Is Put Together On The Outside Doesn't Mean It's Put Together Within.

Men around the world have succumbed to the lie that if you have muscles, money, and a hot wife, you've got it made.

No regard for the quality of their relationships, eternal life, or their mental health. Nope.

Just make sure everything looks good externally.

Eldrick was lacking something that many men today also fail to possess...

It's something that truly defines a man, and as I said in yesterday's email – without this supreme quality, being the head of the home and emotionally fit mean very little.

What would the world look like if more men were living with I-N-T-E-G-R-I-T-Y?

Integrity = the seamless connection between conviction and lifestyle.

The mark of a man is that he lives by his convictions.

Last year, as my company was growing rather quickly, I began to make some calls to add some more people to the team.

One in particular was a very good friend that I've gotten to know the last few years. We'll call him Ken.

He was SUPER excited about the opportunity, and we began to talk through details.

One of the requirements was that he watch through our course material and understand it inside and out before we start to onboard/train him. He was excited to dive in.

About a week later, Ken texted me and said we need to talk. 

It turns out, there were some concepts we taught in the program that he didn't agree with. And because he didn't agree with them, he couldn't join the team in good faith.

I was devastated.

However my respect instantly went up for him because his lifestyle was matching his convictions. We're still good friends to this day.

The goal in this life is that our external life is a manifestation of our inner world.

Too many people are trying to manicure their external life to cover up for a dysfunctional heart.

With it comes a pile of ugly friends – hypocrisy, power-hunger, blame shifting, addiction and narcissism.

Integrity starts with"in". (Read that one a few times to make sure you catch all the layers)

Lately I am dreaming about what the world could look like if men stepped into their roles, cleaned up their inner life, and walked in integrity.

Can I be honest with you?

It looks pretty freaking awesome!!

In a world where integrity is at an all time low, truth is subjective, and the lines surrounding critical concepts like gender and sexuality have been blurred, now more than ever we need men to rise up.

But more specifically, we need men of integrity to rise up.

This is the season to get your heart right.

To clean up those lingering habits, character flaws, and addictions.

I believe that a revolution is in the works. And God is preparing men around the world to lead it.

I'm not sure about you, but I want to be ready when the time comes.

We don't need another Tiger Woods.

We need more Kens.

Men who will stand up for what's right. Live by their convictions. And have nothing to hide when all is said and done.

If you long to see this world become a better place, stop waiting. Start changing.

You already know what it is you need to do. But now, it's time to do it.

If it's time to make things right in a relationship, lay down your pride and make it happen.
If the thing you need to take care of is a struggle with s*xual sin/pornography, it might be time to reach out and get proper help.
If your boss has been having you do something in a way that you know lacks integrity, have that conversation.

Before Tiger's accident, he won 14 Majors. He was set to smash Jack Nicklaus's record of 18.

Since the accident, Tiger has one 1 Major, and his peak years athletically are well behind him.

Without Integrity, You May Reach Your Potential, But You'll Never Sustain It.

This is first about walking in integrity because we're called to do it.

Secondly, it's about modelling to the world what a real man of integrity looks like.

Lastly, it's about you sustainably stepping into all God has for you.

Be a man. Just don't be like Eldrick.

PS. If you're ready to quit p*rn for good in the next 120 days, here's the link to find out more about how I might be able to help you.


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