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July 2, 2012

Redefining Manhood Part 1: Understanding Men

One of the toughest aspects of being a Dad for me has been the way that our secular culture twists what it means to be a man or woman even from childhood. I feel like my kids can’t turn on the TV or visit Facebook without being assaulted by what society tells them they should look and act like. Today I’m beginning a new blog series about redefining manhood in our modern culture.

Before there were sports stars or supermodels on every magazine, there was the word of God which tells us that men and women have God’s autograph on their soul. Genesis 1:27 tells us, “So God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created them, male and female He created them.” We have the capacity to know God and have a relationship with Him. We have a soul, and we are made in the image of God. This means that women and men are equally valued by God because He has placed His autograph on our souls. It is really important to know that men and women are equally created and of equal value to God.

But although men and women are equally valued by God, it is also important to realize that men and women have unique signatures from God. God didn’t make one sex better or worse, but He did make them different. To illustrate this difference between boys and girls, I found a list of  ‘the top four reasons boys are more better then girls’ as decided by little boys:

4) Boys can go to the bathroom in the woods
3) Boys don’t waist there time at the mall
2) Boys no how to make funny noyses with theer armpits
1) Boys rite better then gurls

So, maybe women are better at spelling. Joking aside, there was a time in the 70s when the idea spread that the difference between the sexes was really just a product of our society pressuring boys and girls into their gender roles. Christina Hoff Summers reported that Hasbro Toys tried to make a new dollhouse designed to interest both boys and girls. Not a bad idea if they could sell twice the dollhouses, right? Well, it didn’t go quite like they planned. The little girls played house. They would rearrange the furniture in the house and move the family from room to room. The little boys played with the dollhouse, too. They catapulted the baby carriage off the roof!  Boys and girls are very different. Also, every other boy is different from every other boy just as every girl is different from every other girl. I don’t intend to stereotype gender in this blog post, but I do want to illustrate that most boys tend to have certain signature traits from God, and girls tend to have certain signatures from God.

There are a few main signatures that God places on a boy’s heart that we need to identify and understand. By identifying the unique signature that God places on men, it helps us to raise our boys in a healthy way, communicate with your husband or boyfriend in a way they understand and support the men in our lives the way God intends. The three main signatures I’ve identified on a man’s heart from God are risk taking, initiative and competitiveness. In the next blog post,  I will dive into these traits and discuss why God signs these traits on a man’s heart. What is your experience with the difference between boys and girls? I’d love to hear your stories and thoughts about this topic in the comments!