If Jesus Gave “Man Cards”

10 Jul

man-card

“You just lost your Man card!”

A simple phrase that can be inserted anytime a man doesn’t take enough bacon at breakfast, misses watching/playing a ball game to take care of his kids, holds his wife’s purse in public, cooks dinner for his family (on anything other than an open flame), changes a diaper, or does anything else designated as “unmanly”.

Sometimes it is used strictly in fun, sometimes with hurtful or shaming intent, and sometimes simply as a less emotionally engaged way of telling another guy to “man up” (*the humor removes the awkwardness of actually looking a man in the eye and telling them that they need to take care of their business).

I wouldn’t argue against the fact that our country is in desperate need for men to act like men – we have plenty of dead-beat dads, wife/child abusers, and 30 year old males living in their parents’ basement working part time to support their video game habit – but in the absence of a genuine understanding of manhood our culture has settled for the Man Card and I know we can do better.

Much has been written about how our culture has “neutered” masculinity, how we have lost the milestones on the journey to manhood, how difficult it is for men in today’s technology driven society to have opportunities to feel manly by working with our hands, and on and on the explanation of the problem goes. We can make excuses – blaming everything from feminism & political correctness to the industrial revolution. We can buy into the Man Card mindset – buy a big gun and/or motorcycle, eat only red meat, sleep around, live in our ice house/boat/tree stand/garage/man cave/corner office, etc… Or we can do one of the things real men do – take responsibility and figure out what it really means to be a man.

The good news is that if you know Jesus you are a step ahead of the game, because according to the Bible you are already a “new man” in Christ. Your identity doesn’t have to be wrapped up in what you have and what you’ve done, how tough you are or how big your gun is – you can rest on who Jesus says you are.

With that in mind, I thought it would be helpful to start a list of what Jesus would give a Man Card for – I’m calling it the “New Man” Card and it’s what your wife wishes you understood about being a man.

How to earn your “New Man” Card:

  • Lay down your life – not just willing to die to save someone in an emergency but willing to die to your own desires for their benefit (Ephesians 5-6)
  • Be a servant – if you want to be great in God’s Kingdom, you must be the servant of all
  • Spend time with kids – the disciples tried to chase the kids away and Jesus said “let the little children to come to me…”
  • Say you are sorry and make things right when you have failed – remember Zacheus?
  • Respect women – Jesus was completely counter cultural in how he treated women with honor and respect
  • Boldly speak truth… in a loving way
  • Be compassionate and merciful – how did Jesus treat the woman caught in adultery?
  • Have righteous anger not selfish anger – Jesus overturned money changing tables in temple for all the right reasons
  • Instead of getting even, turn the other cheek – “Vengeance is mine says the LORD”
  • Be meek, be a peacemaker, be poor in spirit – remember the Beatitudes?
  • Wash other mens’ feet – on the night of Passover Feast…
  • Demonstrate faith – the centurion with sick servant was commended by Jesus for his faith
  • Cry – for unsaved people (Jesus wept over Jerusalem), at death of a friend (Lazarus)
  • Give up your rights – He did not consider equality with God something to be grasped but made himself nothing… (Philippians 2)
  • Forgive – see Matthew 18
  • Seek God’s Kingdom first; don’t treasure riches – remember the rich young ruler?
  • Be humble rather than prideful or boasting about what you have done
  • Be who you are, don’t try to look good on the outside – the Pharisees were blasted by Jesus for being “white-washed tombs” – “man looks at the outward appearance but God looks at the heart”
  • Take care of your family – if you don’t you might as well not call your self a Christian, don’t believe me? check 1 Timothy 5:8
  • Don’t give in to lustful thinking and actions – Matthew 5:27-30, Galatians 5:16, & 1 Thessalonians 4:3-5 among many others

What would you add to the list?

-Sam Couture

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Sam Couture lives in Brainerd, MN with his wife, Veronica, 2 sons and a host of pocket gophers who love to destroy his lawn. He uses his degree in Biblical Theology and Intercultural Studies from Multnomah University (Portland, OR) as a decoration in a drawer somewhere and spends a good deal of time fixing websites for chambers of commerce. However his real passion is leading worship at Pointway Church were he has the pleasure of singing with his lovely bride and playing music with MTAB’s own multi-talented Dave Wonders.

One Response to “If Jesus Gave “Man Cards””

  1. For the Love of God July 10, 2013 at 17:30 #

    Awesome list, thanks Sam!

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