Coffee, Theology and Jesus

working out our messy faith over coffee

Tag: maturity

Can Christians Change Views? Part 2: CTJ #42

This is the second half of our discussion about Christians changing views throughout our lives.  We continue the topic and talk about maturity in our faith and how maturity lends itself into growing past some views while becoming more firm in others.  The challenge to each of us is to focus on the commands of scripture and how to apply them to every aspect of our lives.  Join us as we finish out this interesting conversation.

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Can Christians Change Views? Part 1: CTJ #41

When we are new Christians, we develop absolutes as to what we think is 100% right and 100% wrong rather quickly.  Without a doubt, some truths in the Bible are very clear and remain this way throughout life.  What we discuss in this podcast are perhaps some of the “secondary truths” that as we mature, we learn more about grace and have an open mind of various interpretations.  Join us as we discuss changing views, the local church and worship, and so much more in the first part of this two part series.

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From Prince to King – Hey Men, See The Broken World? I Blame Us

Unlike the previous post, I offer no disclaimers. Actually I take that back.  Many of the same disclaimers apply.  I’m generalizing, I can only fit so much in to a single blog post.  Take it with a grain of salt, and of course feel free to give me your opinion in the comments.

As a man I feel much more comfortable speaking about this subject then I did yesterday when I wrote “From Princess to Queen”.   This post is aimed directly to you men (myself included, I picture saying this to myself in the mirror) and I make no apologies for what I have to say to you.

Look around the world.  War, crime, poverty, violence, fatherless children.  I blame you for the majority of it all.  No matter what culture wants to say, no matter how much the feminist movement wants to misrepresent the idea of gender equality, the bottom line is that men are foundation builders for the world.  It’s just the nature that we have.  We build foundations, and we set the tone for the culture around us.  It’s not mostly women in the porn industry.  It’s men. (You might say the number of women is growing to which I say, men were there first, women followed after we men convinced them pornography is normal).  It’s not women who are making decisions to go to war, it’s men (mainly).  It’s not women who are beating their husbands, it’s men who are beating their wives because they can’t show restraint.  I could go on and on and on and on, but I won’t because I think you get what I’m saying.  Men, I blame us for most of our major issues today.

Somewhere along the line we started to believe some crazy things about what a man is.  We traded love for lust, we traded restraint for anger, we traded integrity for doing whatever it takes to get our way, and we traded responsibility for a false sense of freedom .  It’s a shame and it’s destroying the fabric of the world.

We have princes who never became kings.  Little boys in a man’s body who only want what they want, when they want it.  It makes sense that we come out this way when we live in the culture we do.  Between the hyper-sexualized culture (More like fake sexuality) and the entertainment we take in.  It’s no wonder why we are running around like a bunch of chickens with our heads cut off.  We see false sexuality all the time, we see heroes in movies that are scripted.  It’s not that these things (and things like it are completely false), they have just enough truth to resonate with us.  These things strike chords that are real, they are just misplaced.

When we return to God, when we come back to the one who is the author of beauty, romance, adventure, integrity, honor, and all things good, we are able to put masculinity in its proper place and operate out of that.  The more time we spend with our creator getting to know Him both through His Word and His Holy Spirit, we understand that being a man is a much different life than the one our culture shows us.  Instead of viewing women as objects of physical pleasure, we view them as individuals with desires who deserve to be loved and protected.  Our view of sex changes from dirty to clean.  Integrity becomes a key part of who we strive to be.  Our priority’s change from career and money, to family and community.  We measure our worth not by what we do, but by who God already says we are.  We begin to walk in the full understanding of how important it is that we be hope to a dying world, one that fights for what is good, that protects the innocent, and cares for the orphan and widow.

Are we perfect? Of course not.  We’ve all bitten in to the apple of culture and what it says we should be.  We quickly begin to realize however, that no matter how good that apple looked, it’s rotten inside full.  I can speak personally and say that I have fallen often to the cultures lies about who a man is.  I’ve been selfish, I’ve put myself ahead of others, and the consequences every time are always devastating.

The change starts with you, with us.  Impact your family, impact your local community.  Not all of us are called to be in the public eye, to be seen and heard by millions, and that’s ok.  Be the unseen hero to many, but the seen hero to a few.  We must man up in the truest sense of the word.  Putting others before ourselves, putting their needs before ours, and being the front lines of defense.

Men have immense power, and when it’s used for good the world around us changes for good, when it’s abused, the world around us becomes a nightmare for those around us.   May we walk with our creator and let him be the author of who we are, and what we’re meant to do.

From Princess to Queen, What the World Desperately Needs.

Before I start, I have a few disclaimers.

1. This solely just my thoughts on the subject

2. This is a deep subject and I can’t address every aspect of it in one blog post

3. I’m not a woman, therefore I don’t know exactly how accurate I am.  Nevertheless, as a man, this is how I see things.

4.  For the sake of length, I will be generalizing, take it with a grain of salt.

A couple of days ago a few buddies of mine were hanging out after hours at a local coffee shop.  My friend is the manager so he opens it up for us after it closes down so we can sit around and talk.  Especially with life being so busy for so many of my friends, I find this to be a great time of catching up in each others lives.

During the conversation a friend brought up Disney and how he thinks it’s ruining young girls impressions of what being a woman is.  We talked for about an hour about the unrealistic fantasy a lot of these children movies present (such as Snow White) regarding finding true love in another person.  We all agreed that these movies can be great examples of Christ if you view Christ as the prince, and humanity as the princess, but as a child, it’s hard to see it that way.

During the night another friend brought up a point about how it seems like a lot of culture tells girls to be princesses, but never to grow up to be queens.  He went on to say that essentially we have a lot of grown up princesses.  Girls who never grew out of the princess mentality and now want the world handed to them on a silver platter.  That the view of their prince is someone who gives them everything they want whenever they want it, and when they don’t get it they kick and scream.  Spoiled was the word he used.

After we all disbanded and I went home I started thinking about that thought.  That girls are often taught to be the princesses, but not the queen.  It’s not that culture says that women shouldn’t be queens, they just don’t explain that as girls grow up they move from a princess to a queen.

Follow me here, I’m not saying that girls being taught that they are a princess is a bad thing.  I’m saying when they don’t see themselves as queens when they get older, we run in to a major problem.  Queens co-rule the kingdom with their king.  Queens can take on responsibility that a princess cannot.  Queens are secure in their position.  I can continue but you get the idea.

The problem occurs when girls are rarely taught that as they grow up, they begin to move from a princess to a queen. There’s an emotional maturity that begins to happen, and the view of themselves begins to shift from “Am I beautiful?” to “I am beautiful”.  Both parts are necessary .  This is a big complicated issue, one I won’t go in to here.

 

The result of this is staggering, we have a culture full of girls who are stuck mentally in princess mode.  Girls who either want the world handed to them, or girls who never were told how much they are loved by the person they needed it most.  Ultimately only Jesus can answer that question.  But when culture says to get that answer from a boyfriend, or a husband it sets up things for disaster

When we let culture dictate our image we come out with a very skewed image of how exactly life works.  Life is not happily ever after.  I’m not a pessimist I’m just trying to be realistic.  Your husband (or future husband) will fail you at some time because he is human.  The world does not revolve around shopping, your hair, or you.  (Don’t worry ladies, this is part 1, part 2  I get to lay in to us guys).  Queens are busy.  Busy doing work in the kingdom with their king, not sitting at home gossiping about what the other woman was wearing or what she said. A princess expects the world to be handed to her, a queen expects to change the world around her.

This is ultimately what I’m saying.  Girls need to  mature from the mindset of princess, to the mindset of queen.  Our world is in desperate need of women who know their worth, know their value, and are determined to be the beauty this world needs. Women and their power is extremely underrated.  Women breath life in to things.  Women not only physically birth life, they have the power to bring color to a black and white world.  When a women walks in the security of who she is the world changes around her.

This is part 1.  Part 2 will be from Prince to King.

 

-TW