I have been called “honest to a fault.” At first I thought how could someone be honest to a fault? I then thought maybe it has happened where people asked me the truth about something in which I knew to be truth, & they didn’t like the answer. However, isn’t that their fault? Then I think of the times I have been passed up for a promotion, not included in certain groups or organizations, not invited to outings because of my faith, or for being a conservative. I then also think of the times when I’ve made mistakes, admitted to them, asked for others forgiveness; while people asked “why” I did that, “they would have never known”. Times I have returned money when I was over paid, such as an ATM spewing out 10x what I requested and when I went inside and returned it, the bank teller thanked me and said that they would have never found the error. When I share real life examples like this, I’ve been told I am “honest to a fault”.
As I have said before, I was taught honesty and integrity at a very young age. My mama taught me, (now I here the song, “Simple Man” by Lynyrd Skynyrd playing in the background. ; ) ), that a man is only as good as his word. His word is his bond, that no one can take integrity away from you, but you, yourself. To this day, I cannot remember a time either of my parents have ever lied to me, and when I asked them tough questions at an age I could digest it, they told me the bold truth, even if that truth was tough to handle, or accept.
I confess, that I have lost friends, and other relationships by being honest, or speaking truth. Whether the truth when someone asks me directly, or striving to live out my faith. Yes, I am at fault for that. So I guess I am “honest to a fault.” However, it does sadden me that someone would unfriend me, talk badly about me behind my back, or despise me, or seek to cause me financial or physical harm for being honest and speaking the truth. I was taught honesty and integrity is a virtuous character trait. That it is noble and honorable. I was also taught by reading the bible that people will turn from the truth, and also despise such things, especially as we approach nearer to end times. Not saying these are “The End Times”. However, these have certainly been unprecedented times.
Those that have invested enough time to read to this point, I thank you for allowing me to open up a bit, and be vulnerable on this medium. I do wish to express that if anything I have said, or done has offended you, that I am sorry only that it is not my intent to hurt anyone. Never has, never will. However, with all my imperfections as I am still a process in work by my Creator; I do know who I am, what I am about, and to Whom I serve. I realize the truth is not always easy to swallow. Through my life much truth was hard for me too. However, it doesn’t change the fact that the truth is the truth. Just because you don’t believe it, or want to believe it, does not make it untrue. I also believe a man should take a stand for what is true, just, moral and for justice, not just for themselves, but for those who cannot stand for themselves.
In closing, I wish to share something with you from my many years on this earth, studies, education, and leading a variety of ministries, in which a good portion has been men’s ministries. I share this as I have discovered some, if not many, people question what it is to be a man in today’s society. I know that teenage boys seem to hunger for what it is to be a man, not just because I have taught boys Sunday school classes from 1st grade to high school, nor that I have been asked to be a speaker at such events, it is the fact I have both a teenage son, as well as a teenage daughter. What I wish to share with you is at the link below. I title it, “The Ten Marks of a Good Man”. These Marks are what I strive to live out each day, not just in words, but in actions and deeds. It is also the Marks I teach my teenage son. Take a continued read, share your thoughts, comments, and share it out if you like. And if you want to know the truth of anything I know as truth, simply ask me. Thank you. May God bless you, and yours. Shalom.
The Ten Marks of a Good Man
It seems many boys strive to seek their masculine identity starting around as early as the age of 10. If they do not find it at home, they will find it somewhere, in something, or someone. So as a man, a father, a soul that desires to chase the “Beautiful Outlaw in Jesus Christ think some great attributes of a good male role model? In other words, what do I ardently believe, from my years on this earth, think the Marks of a Great Man are? I agree with much of what Author John Eldredge and the leader and founder of Ransomed Heart Ministries, shares in many of his books. However, I am going to list my opinion, perspective and thoughts in a Top 10:
- A Good Man is a man of his word. His word is his bond. He exudes integrity in all that he says and does. “The integrity of the upright guides them, but the unfaithful are destroyed by their duplicity.” — Proverbs 11:3. “The LORD detests lying lips, but he delights in people who are trustworthy.” — Proverbs 12:22.
- A Good Man is not a harmless man, a good man is a very dangerous man that has it all under voluntary control. “Blessed be the Lord, my rock, who trains my hands for war, and my fingers for battle;” — Psalm 144:1. “When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own palace, his goods are safe” — Luke 11:21. “When I saw their fear, I rose and spoke to the nobles, the officials and the rest of the people: “Do not be afraid of them; remember the Lord who is great and awesome, and fight for your brothers, your sons, your daughters, your wives and your houses.” — Nehemiah 4:14
- A Good Man loves his wife and children in words, actions and deed. “Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.” — Ephesians 5:25. “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.” — 1 Corinthians 13:4–8. “Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good.” — Romans 12:9
- A Good Man can admit where and when he was wrong, apologize and seek forgiveness with humility. “Whoever conceals his transgressions will not prosper, but he who confesses and forsakes them will obtain mercy.” Proverbs 28:13. “Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.” — James 5:16.
- A Good Man strives to learn from his mistakes and improve. “For the righteous falls seven times and rises again, but the wicked stumble in times of calamity” Proverbs 24:16. “Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead,” — Philippines 3:13
- A Good Man takes a minority position for what is honorable, true, and right even if he has to stand alone. “Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.” — Deuteronomy 31:6
- A Good Man has a vision. He regularly sets goals, strives to achieve them. “May he give you the desire of your heart and make all your plans succeed.”- Psalm 20:4. “Where there is no vision, the people perish” — Proverbs 29:18. “To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps.” — 1 Peter 2:21
- A Good Man is a provider and a protector. “But if anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for members of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.” — 1 Timothy 5:8
- A Good Man is a team player. He realizes to be the best he looks to not only a core team, a close and wise circle of influence, but thinks more of those around him, and the team, than he does himself only, by encouraging, inspiring and helping one another with accountability. “Iron sharpeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend.” — Proverbs 27:17. “A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother” — Proverbs 18:24
- A Good Man works and takes pride in what he does as it is good to work, no matter what job, career or position, he works hard as to the Lord and not unto mankind. He ardently pursues excellence in his work, at home, and whatever he lays his hands to, but not perfectionism. ““Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might, for there is no work or thought or knowledge or wisdom in Sheol, to which you are going” — Ecclesiastes 9:10. “Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord.” — Romans 12:11