Thursday, March 05, 2009

Reward: Dead or Alive

Every Wednesday morning at 5:30 - yes, that's A.M. - several of us have been attending a men's class called The Quest For Authentic Manhood, which is part of the Men's Fraternity series. It is excellent. I would love to see every man attend this class, but especially all our younger men, whether single or married. It is the best material that I have seen for helping men truly see what God intend for real men to be. It's wonderfully balanced, pointedly relevant, and - as far as defining real manhood and giving direction - it's beautifully biblical. I decided to attend primarily to support it more than to gain some new insights, but I have been pleasantly surprised with a lot of ideas, concepts, and challenges that have made the sleep depriving effort worthwhile. Still, for me, a lot of it involves things that in my life I confronted and concluded a long time ago. I have taught and preached most of what it covers. I'm not struggling with being an authentic man. With help and grace, I got it many years ago.
Yesterday though, the DVD speaker ended his part of the lesson by pointing out that making the right choices about manhood has many rewards - in this life as well as the life to come. He's my age, so the things he pointed out were very applicable to me. I hadn't thought of many of my blessings as rewards, but they are. When I look at my loving wife, who respects and admires me, I see a reward for decided to be a spiritual leader and committed husband. When I look at our adult children and see their faith and dedication to God, their godly spouses and their strong marriages, I see a reward for not just choosing to be a loving parent but for putting God first and being the example they needed to see. And what can I say about seeing beautiful grandchildren being born into families that will love them, guide them, and bring them up to love God? Reward? You bet! These are not rewards that I deserve or earned, but rewards that God promised to give to those who figure out who to seek first. These rewards are not guarantees about the future, but they are part of God's law of sowing and reaping.
I guess what I'm saying is that you'll never regret deciding to be the kind of man or woman God called you to be. The rewards aren't just after you die.

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