Family is a place where we learn to love and be loved. It’s where we learn to give and appreciate what the Lord has entrusted to us. It is painful and sad to see at times how light-mindedly people treat the issues of family and marriage, and the raising of children. The concept of marriage came from the Lord. The desire to create family also comes from God. Therefore, whenever a married couple has problems in their relationship, they should first of all deal with their spiritual state and turn to the Creator of marriage and family for counseling and help – to God. Let us always remember that matrimony is a true art.
Reading the story of the creation of the world we can see that “God created man in His image; in the image of God He created him. He created them male and female” (Genesis 1:27). First God created man and made him the head of the family. God created man as a model, as the foundation of the society and family. This in no way decreases the significance of women and their role in building harmonious relationships; however the bulk of the responsibility lies on the man. That is why society makes so many demands on and reproofs of men; though, unfortunately, it does not teach how to become a real man. To be a man does not only mean to be a successful businessman, earn lots of money, or take a high post in the government or politics. No! It is possible to have lots of money, a prestigious position, and still not be established as the head of the family or a father. Let us talk today about who a real man is; a man capable of creating a heavenly atmosphere in his family.
1. Man is a founder. The birthright of man indicates that he is a foundation, forefather, and organizer of the family, kin, and the society. He is the foundation holding the whole structure. If the foundation is weak, then the whole structure may collapse.
Man is an image of stability in family and in society. I always try to understand my wife. If something is wrong, I kneel down before her. Many men say that it is humiliating, but I would rather kneel down than allow our relationship to crack, seeing that as the man I am responsible for everything. Understanding the fact that no one owes me anything helps me to get rid of selfishness, which is a characteristic that destroys the actual essence of man. I owe to my parents, to my wife, to my children, and to my country. I owe time, strength, attention, love, care, even just a smile, words of affirmation, and actions that bring positive changes.
A real man takes responsibility and makes decisions. Unfortunately, sometimes men protest when they are asked to do things. But you should never wait until you have been given assignments! It is better to be in continuous search: “What can I do? Who needs my help? How can I be of help?” If a man does not do this, he is “torn apart”, because he has not found himself. Even in the church men often take a position of observation or pass by women who need help. That happens because they do not understand that the direct duty of men is to give the hand of help, be a support to their wives, children, mothers, brothers, and sisters.
2. Men must win authority and prove their right for supremacy.
Men like to give orders, rule, and boss around, but it is important to remember that the right for supremacy needs to be earned. Never deceive yourself into thinking that everyone will automatically listen to you and submit to you simply because you are a man. Men are conquerors by nature. But you cannot win authority by strength. You can gain it only by following certain principles and laws, which have been well revealed in the Book of life. God created man and blessed him, and commanded him to be fruitful, multiply, and fill the earth. Only then was he instructed to have dominion. The Book of Genesis 1:28 reveals the stages of gaining authority:
- Be fruitful: it means to produce people of your own image, to become an example, which others can emulate.
- Multiply: it means to multiply everything you have today, raise followers and fathers.
- Have dominion: it means to use power, govern something or someone; be in charge or in command.
Often men do not have enough patience to wait for growth. One needs to learn to be patient realizing that nothing good can be gained through haste; but “he that can have patience, can have what he wills” (Benjamin Franklin). You will certainly need patience if you want to reproduce yourself in others, but in order to multiply and have dominion you will need even more patience. A man’s virtue is shown in his ability to be patient.
“He who is slow to anger is better than the mighty” (Proverbs of Solomon 16:32).
3. A man must manifest the image of God the Father.
The quality of emulating is there in every man. All children dream of being like someone they admire: a famous footballer, a movie star, a spaceman, etc. Boys emulate their fathers, and if the father is not around, they will find someone with some form of authority and emulate them. We have this desire in us in order to help us learn to conform to the Heavenly Father, the Perfect Father. When I read the Bible I discover the image of the true Father. I try to emulate Him and be like Him in everything. I am filled with and transformed into the image of Christ; then I multiply this image in others. God never flies off the handle, therefore I won’t either. God respects every one; therefore I will not neglect anyone either; God is kind, caring, responsible, hard-working, therefore, I must be that way. However, as not everyone is able to understand God right away, He gives us examples of fathers in the persons of parents, pastors, teachers, who in their turn are supposed to manifest the image of God and pass it on to people around them.
Above all, you need to manifest God in your family. You do not need to go out of your way to explain something. You do not need to impose things. You do not need to talk much about your values; values are to be demonstrated. Let us start demonstrating our love, faith, dedication, persistence, patience, and strive for self-development. Let us show who a real man is through our lives, and not through our reproofs and demands. If you want your sons to grow into real men, you will have to show them a real man in your own personality. We are called to establish and spread this image for people around us to become bearers of God’s character. And it is possible even for single mothers. Believe me, it will surely bring good fruits.
A real man is someone, who is dedicated to God, who supports his family, helps his parents, and takes an active civil stand. He puts some efforts into becoming stronger, to move step in step with time in order to be relevant and needed; thus, he continuously engages in self-perfection and aspires to higher knowledge and education. He never stops learning and training. He is a protector of God’s principles; he is a father, the head of the family; he honors his fathers. He fills the earth with the knowledge of God.
As much as men will start developing, multiplying, spreading these qualities; women will be able to feel proportionately protected and covered with love and care, and the world will become warmer, kinder, and more beautiful. I pray for the Lord God to give us strength to become men of the highest calling and virtue, men, who can become a foundation for the whole world!
For a more thorough study of this topic we recommend you read the following books:
“In search of a Father”, “In search of a Gentleman”, “Successful marriage takes work”, “Heavenly atmosphere in the family”, “Dynamics of family life”, “Man’s happiness. Woman’s happiness” – by Sunday Adelaja
May the Lord bless you and your family!
With love and prayers for you,
Senior Pastor of the Embassy of the Blessed Kingdom of God for All Nations Church
Translated by Ekaterina Popova
Edited by Kizito Leacock