As an emerging man can you point to the time when you became aware of your personal situation?
Did you just have a feeling?
Were you in an accident of some sort and have your life flash before your eyes?
Did you find yourself in the open bed of a pick up truck that you had never seen before, after getting black out drunk the night before, then wandering around town until you found yourself back in familiar surroundings?
At some point we have something happen that gets our attention pointed to the fact that we may not be the man we think we are.
How do we identify something that we’ve never seen before.
If you encountered an octopus for example, how would you try to describe that to someone who has never heard of one or seen one… it would be hard to identify that thing so that they could understand you… you could draw them a picture, that would help, but how do we identify what a man is? How do we explain to someone what we are looking for when we can’t really pick one out ourselves.
There are so many variations and cultures within ‘the melting pot of America’ it becomes farcical to try and pick a target to shoot at for ourselves when we have no real idea of what the target is.
Historically, even the recent history in America, still had tribes and small villages along with their traditions and cultures helping young men know where they were headed.
Each culture and tribe would have their specific rites of passage that gave a young man a definite point of time attached to a specific rite, ceremony, trial by fire, or other celebrated event.
What do we have today in order for a young man to know specifically when he has reached those critical points in his development as a contributing man of his ‘tribe’, village or culture?
When I was coming out of high school… who cared?
I was adrift in a small town of 8,000 people… there was no position of manhood waiting for me at the table of my local community. I was adrift with few perceived options for a life. I graduated high school, had a very small family gathering to celebrate… and that was it.
An Emerging Man that did not have a good man as a good dad growing up really has no template to follow. If that man never acknowledged his son he has now left that boy to grow into a man in body only. With no trials, rites, celebrations or accomplishments to mark the passage of time for that boy that show him he has passed the test, he has overcome adversity, he has moved from one stage to the next… instead he languishes in an unsteady mind and a tortured soul… because he wants to know… he has to know… BUT he struggles to find himself, denying that he is even lost, believing his own made up picture of himself that he portrays to the world… using words… words he has rehearsed over and over.
Words he now hears as… hollow.
In my book The Definite Dad I share three words that have been with me as far back as I can remember, three words I tried to live by… knowing full well I was falling short… I knew in my heart I wasn’t much of a man… but like the North star these three words were what I steered my course by.
I wrote in my latest book…
“Similarly, to the character Benaiah, in my book titled I Am Benaiah, who The Bible commented on in 2 Samuel 23:23, when referencing King David’s Mighty Men. It is written… “he was more honored than The Thirty, but he did not attain to The Three.” During my self-assessment, and reflection on my own life as a man, trying to attain to Duty, Discipline, and Honor… in my own estimation… I have not attained to The Three.” excerpt taken from The Definite Dad, page 9.
What are your 3 current words you use the most that would describe to someone who you are?
Does it seem like you’re trying to describe that octopus?
Stop and think…
“What 3 words would I use to describe how I feel as a man right now?”
“What 3 words could I set a course by that I could use to Encourage, Equip & Engage the world with?”