Manhood is Not Natural

While thinking about Father’s Day, my thoughts went back to an article from Touchstone. I’ve got a feeling that I may have shared the article with some of you already, but even if I have, I think an excerpt bears repeating.

“Womanhood is a natural phenomenon. A female’s biological make-up usually ensures that she will grow into a healthy woman. Leave her to herself, and she is much more likely than her male peers to move into mature adulthood. It’s why the phrases ‘Woman up,’ ‘Be a woman,’ or ‘Make a woman out of her’ don’t exist.

As her body matures, internally and externally, it sends her and those around her an unmistakable message about what she is and what she’s becoming. It moves her inexorably in that direction with a force as great as it is mysterious. Few girls miss these cues.

The opposite is true of manhood. Manhood is not natural. It must be socially constructed.

As George Gilder explains pointedly in Men and Marriage, ‘Unlike a woman, a man has no civilized role or agenda inscribed in his body.’ The boy has no onboard GPS directing him toward his future. His manhood does not exist within himself, as womanhood does in a girl. It is out there, beyond himself. He must go find it. He must rouse himself and gather his courage. He must go.

His movement into manhood can only come into being if he has a pilot, a director, to guide him toward that destiny. Doing this is the significant, intentional work of older men around him, starting with his father.”

In a day of societal engendered gender confusion, it’s obvious that fathers, and Christian men in general, have a lot of work to do. So let’s man up, and meet the challenge.

God Bless, Rick

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