The title to this post has some pretty crucial punctuation. If you miss that all-critical comma, you’ll end up reading, “Start Being a Man Boy.” Which is definitely not what this is supposed to be about. This post is about growing up. About being a man. About owning up. (And if it wasn’t incredibly obvious yet, this post is for the guys.)
Whereas the last post was a gentle admonishment and meek request to our Christian sisters to help us out, this post is intended to be a sledge hammer of justice, smashing down on man-children everywhere and kicking them square in the rear to shape up and man up! I’m getting a rush of adrenaline just thinking about it!
So check it out: our generation has a big problem. Our men don’t want to be men. If this wasn’t obvious from the cascades of cash pouring in from inane movies like Role Models or anything by Will Ferrell (who, admittedly, is funny), then it might become apparent on another, more subtle note. I’ve heard (and seen) an interesting problem with some of my female friends of marriageable age.
There’s no men for them.
There’s no men. And I don’t mean that there is a decided lack of males. There’s certainly plenty of those. But I’m saying there’s a lack of good men out there for my friends to be swept off their feet by. What defines a man? According to Captain Obvious and history, a man is a member of the male persuasion who takes responsibility for his own actions, strives to work hard for a greater end, treats women with respect and dignity, and applies himself to everything he does. A Christian man does all of that, but spend his quality time on his knees communing with his savior. And he does it all to the Glory of God.
So where are the men? As I touched on before, there’s an interesting cultural stereotype that has been introduced in the past couple decades or so. It’s commonly referred to as the ‘man-child’. Think every character that Will Ferrell plays (with the notable exception of Stranger Than Fiction…but even then), and you have successfully envisioned the archetypical man-child. A grown male who behaves like a child, throws temper tantrums when he doesn’t get his way, and in general, acts like a complete idiot for someone of his size. This persona has seeped into popular culture (which explains Will Ferrell’s success) and have affected lots and lots of guys. As they age, in many cities life becomes a game of who can act the stupidest and get laid the most. Work becomes a meaningless 8 hour prison that simply serves as a vehicle to income which you can spend on the weekend getting wasted with your fellow man-children. Instead of seeking to become the man God wants you to be (or heck, just becoming a man!), life is about trivial pursuit, fleeting pleasures, and lots of sex.
What’s behind all this? Part of it is that men are taking longer to finish college than they were 30 years ago (and women are too) which is pushing marriage and family back farther. The median age for getting married was 28 in 2011, compared with 23 in 1970. This is an interesting tie in to college and education, which I will discuss in a future post.
I’ll follow up on this post later.