Brad Williams with a fantastic piece on Christ and Pop Culture today, saying things that desperately need to be said:
Culture tells us that certain things are “manly” and certain things are “unmanly.” But we must take that with a grain of salt. Most of the time, those around us in the culture have no idea who or what they are — so taking our cues from them doesn’t make any sense. Down deep, many people are quite insecure about themselves, and so they stick to silly things like “pink is for girls” because they have no better way to define what it is to be masculine. As a good man, you must take note of these things. Such markers might be alright for immature boys, but a good man will feel some grief for adults who continue to define themselves so narrowly.
Back in 2001, John Eldredge wrote a book titled Wild at Heart. In it, he argued that every man’s desire is for “a battle to fight, an adventure to live, and a beauty to rescue.” This does sound very romantic perhaps, but that’s all it is. After all, many women have these same desires — and some men may hardly desire such things at all.
A good man does not have, in his heart, a grand desire for conquest. A good man’s heart desires only peace. A good man doesn’t desire war with his neighbor in order to take what isn’t his. The prophet Micah, when teaching of the day when God’s Kingdom would finally come to Earth, wrote, “they shall sit every man under his vine and under his fig tree, and no one shall make them afraid” (Micah 4:4). A good man loves the peace of his own vineyard. He desires a time when there’s nothing out there to make anyone afraid. This doesn’t mean he’ll always live in peace because seeking peace can still lead to conflict, but peace should always be the end goal. Your dream of peace may lead you to a different place of contentment than a vineyard or a fig tree, but Micah’s verse reveals that a man’s proper goal is desiring the opposite of fighting battles.
Maybe the Christian manliness bro culture has dissipated a little bit since Mark Driscoll left the helm of Acts29 and Mars Hill, but it’s still far too prevalent. Williams provides a great corrective here that those bought into the “real manhood” circus.