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What I Want My Son To Become (In Spite of What Culture Says)

by

Adam Faughn

 

AdamFaughnLast weekend, we braved “Tax-Free Weekend” at Wal-Mart to buy school supplies for the kids. Actually, we survived this experienced, which is a small accomplishment in itself.

As Leah was looking at her list for the kids, she wanted each child to select a 3-ring binder as an “extra” notebook, just to keep loose papers in. She had in mind a cool notebook with a nice design for each child. Mary Carol immediately spotted a pink and green design. It was colorful and loud, so she knew it was hers. Then it was time for Turner to select his. So we looked… and looked… and looked.

Even the workers could not figure out why we were struggling to find a masculine design. “We have these,” they would say, pointing to plain blue or red. Leah was calm, but tried to get them to understand that we were looking for a design that was masculine.

Literally, there were none.

Now, we could have found an anime design or something like that, but we thought it was odd that not a single notebook could be found with truly masculine colors or designs on it.

And it seems that this is just a tiny example of what is happening to boys in our society.

Culture tries to push boys to the margins. On one side, you have the rude, obnoxious, and crude boy who learns that a real man fights and cusses. He makes fun of everyone and does whatever is necessary to get his own way. On the other side, you have the idea that there is not any real difference between boys and girls, so boys should be feminized. They should just have to adjust to a world where everything is equal.

Which begs the question: If everything is equal, why do boys have to be feminine?

I do not want my son on either of these margins. As Turner grows and matures, I have a specific goal for him. I do not know if we will hit that goal, but it is where we are pointing him. In a culture that wants to mold Turner in the margins, my desire is different. Here is what I pray he will become.

  1. Spiritually Strong. Obviously, this is first and primary on my mind. The world needs people who are spiritually strong, but the Church and culture at large is starved for males who are spiritually strong. I want Turner to desire to be like Jesus, who never once wavered from His goal to complete the work that God had for Him to do. I want him to look at the qualifications for being an elder in the Lord’s Church (1 Timothy 3:1-7Titus 1:5-9), and see those as a benchmark for living his life daily, whether he ever becomes an elder or not.
  2. Unashamedly Male. It is not a sin to be a guy, nor is it shameful. “Male and female [God] created them” (Genesis 1:27). Both genders are created in God’s image, and both have extremely valuable roles to play in all parts of society. There are certain arenas of life where either gender can do a tremendous job, but that does not mean male and female are always the same. I want Turner to appreciate being a male and to not let society cause him to feel shame for it.
  3. A True Gentleman. Turner already desires to protect his mother. In fact, until just a few months ago, I could not kiss Leah in front of Turner without him trying to pry us apart! I want him to always have that trait within him. I want him to show real honor and respect for ladies (as well as others, such as the aged). I desire for Turner to be mannerly and genteel. In a world that says that chivalry is dead, I want him to be a knight in shining armor!
  4. Heaven-Centered. His feet may walk across the grass and soil of Tennessee or beyond, but I pray that Turner realizes that his “citizenship is in heaven” (Philippians 3:20), and that this realization provides the orientation for his life. With that realization, he will know how to treat others, how to stand for truth, how to love like Christ, and how to prioritize each decision in life.

Son, this culture says that what you are is no big deal. That is simply not true. God created you as our wonderful son, and we are going to do all we can to help you realize that you are wonderful because you are a son. In a society that tries to push real manhood to the margins, I pray you will not only be grateful for being a male, but you will show others what it means to be a man after God’s own heart and design.

I love you, son.

QUESTION: Do you feel that we are right in thinking that society is pushing boys to the margins? If so, where do you see this happening?

 

Adam Faughn lives in Hermitage, TN and preaches for the Lebanon Road Church of Christ in Nashville, TN

 




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If we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.

Romans 14:8