Proverbs 27:17 As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.
As we in America approach Father’s Day 2020 we find ourselves in a worldwide pandemic as well as cultural upheaval over racism and leadership. As men we should be looking at ourselves very closely and contemplating our role in the world.
Being in the world means among other things we are woven into the temporal and spiritual fabric of this life we are living NOW. Whether we are aware of it or not our thoughts and subsequent actions in the world have impact and consequences. The connectedness of people, of humanity in general is the weave of God’s kingdom. God the Father, Christ Jesus and the person of the Holy Spirit are always at work in the world and among us. We are sustained both physically and spiritually by them.
As men made in God’s image, we are accorded certain responsibilities which like our fallen ancestor Adam we often fail at or rebel against. All men are actively guilty of this.
Many of us grew up with Father’s who were absent or sinful through abandonment and other ways. Our examples of manhood were drawn from the men around us or distant father figures.
What we failed to understand then and even now is that God was at work in the circumstances, amid the fear and confusion to bring us into our adulthood so He would be glorified and we would be faithful to be a servant to the people and world around us.
So now men are you a servant to God, to your family and friends, to your community? Are you doing what you can do with your limitations and gifts to be a servant?
We live in a world of expressive individualism. This manifests itself into the lives of many men, as influenced by media, entertainment, and the lack of morally responsible Father’s into machoism among other things.
Many men today are selfish, prideful and lack moral courage. Men today believe that machoism is the preferred way of thinking and behaving regardless of how it affects the people or world around them. We have seen an extreme instance of this machoism and racism recently in the very public murder of George Floyd.
As men of God, as Christians who pray and worship God and Christ Jesus we must not only speak up and take action regarding the injustices we see around us we must also be living a life of virtues, morals and Christ-likeness, the Christian way of life. We must strive to be gospel centered in our actions and in our thinking.
Life is hard for men and women and many good godly people have an extremely hard time in life and suffer greatly. I do not pretend that life is easy or that by shear will power or some other wishful thinking we can change years of bad circumstances or willful and sinful thinking. However, the power and never-ending mercy of God has been and is currently evident in this world we live in.
Christ Jesus who is a physical person at the right hand of God speaks of you and me. Think of it! Do not let the dullness and fatigue of life keep you from seeing this.
Fred McFeely Rogers (March 20, 1928 – February 27, 2003) was an American television personality, musician, puppeteer, writer, producer, and Presbyterian minister. He was the creator, producer, and host of the children’s television series Mister Rogers' Neighborhood, which aired from 1968 to 2001. Mister Rogers Neighborhood was acclaimed for focusing on children's emotional and physical concerns, death, sibling rivalry, school enrollment, and divorce and racism.
Fred Rogers died of stomach cancer on February 27, 2003, at the age of 74.
He influenced many writers and producers of children's television shows, and his series has served as a source of comfort for many children and adults during tragic events, even after his death.
He was involved in many other tv productions and was a public spokesmen for children at numerous congressional hearings, As imitation is the sincerest form of flattery he has been mocked and caricatured over the years by the likes of Saturday Night Live to name a few.
So here is the thing, Fred Rogers lived and demonstrated for children and adults what virtues and values help all of us, and society in general function in a Christ-like way.
You can make fun of him all you like or dismiss him, yet his impact has been immediate and long-lasting. Can you say the same of your life?
All of us men would do well to watch Mr. Rogers Neighborhood, or listen to his interviews and emulate him in the small and unnoticed things in our lives. Yet the moral lessons and values of empathy, compassion and love will come to you if you cultivate a life of worship and prayer. If you choose friends that are concerned with the deep things in life and not the shallow trappings of our material culture.
Men Be Like Mr. Rogers!