By Kenneth Stepp
On your own again. Living alone. Doing things your way… Sounds like Heaven, doesn’t it? Maybe my confusion begins there. I’m at the wheel, I control where and when my life goes. Yet something is always missing. I have friends. I have friends who are women. But my life has a very deep void right in the middle of it. I believe, like most people, I am meant to be the other half of a whole. I am meant to share my life with another. I am a man, in my DNA, I am a protector, a caretaker, a provider. I am the lion at the front of my den, the knight at my castle, making sure no one is hurt inside. In today’s society much of this has been manipulated out of us, maybe by design, maybe because as men, we’ve gotten lazy. But men today do not act like the men in my father’s generation. It’s as if today they have bought into far too many ideas that aren’t natural for a man.
“When you look for a man- what you want to look for is a man with the heart of a poor boy and the mind of a conqueror.”
― C. JoyBell C
As I shut my eyes and think of fashion today compared to my father’s day, I chuckle a little. Try it yourself. If I envision my father in skinny jeans… Well, it’s just weird. When I was a kid, my dad rode a Harley, ran around with some pretty tough characters, and did manly things. He’d work all week on his regular job and when he was off, he’d be at my uncle’s garage working on cars for extra money to put food on the table. He never once thought of asking the government or anyone else for help. Mom was his wife, we were his kids, and the whole bunch were his responsibility alone. He would provide for and defend what he treasured. And he wasn’t a chauvinistic pig for being that way, he was simply a man, a very good man. But in his day, a typical man. My how things have changed.
“What a piece of work is a man! How noble in reason! how infinite in faculty! in form, in moving, how express and admirable! in action how like an angel! in apprehension how like a god! the beauty of the world! the paragon of animals! And yet, to me, what is this quintessence of dust?”
― William Shakespeare, Hamlet
I love that line, “noble in reason”. Men use to be just that. They weighed their actions by what was right. By how it affected others. Not by how it felt or what they gained. Things have changed and the narcissists won. For the most part anyway. I’ve never heard so many stories from my female friends that make me want to apologize for my entire gender. I’m not naive enough to think that there weren’t selfish men back then. But in general, my dad’s generation was more pure. They fought in wars because they were patriots, not because they couldn’t find a job or a judge gave them a choice to join the military or go to jail (it happens). They were men with integrity. Men who did the right thing because it was the right thing. Traits like faithfulness, loyalty, courage, and ethical. They describe the men my father allowed in my world. My parents understood something that was vital. They had three boys to raise. They understood they weren’t raising three boys. They were raising three men. There is a difference…
Any man can “act” like a man. But real men aren’t abusive, aren’t bullies, won’t lie, are transparent, faithful, and are gentlemen. A real man doesn’t have to prove he’s a man. Real men will care about you. They will consider your feelings before their own. A real man might look like a dinosaur these days, but they do exist. If you want a grown up, responsible, loving man, capable of having a real commitment, then do not settle for less. And by all means, be the woman that this man would want a commitment with.
Ladies, let God lead. There are so many distractions, so many men who seem right for a moment. So many options, if that hasn’t worked for you so far. Stop. There are good men out there. Men with giant hearts wanting to find someone who will protect their heart the way they will in turn be your protector. Maybe God has a better view from His chair than you do. Maybe…
“It’s good to let God pick a man for you. We don’t do so well when we pick them ourselves. They end up lipsticks in a drawer, all those wrong colors you thought looked so good in the package.”
― Deb Caletti