When a Boy Becomes a Man

My husband is away with our second born this week.  They have gone off to a cabin by a state park to do some hiking together for a couple of days.  This is the second time a trip like this has been taken in our household, and it's one we've been praying about for awhile now.  This is the trip where a Daddy will gently explain what love and intimacy are all about and what was designed by God to be a sacred gift for marriage. 

It's the trip when a boy drives off with his father and comes back a young man.

We don't have many rites of passage in our culture.  Childhood has been under attack, its lines getting blurred into the teenage years with exposure to media and the encountering of concepts children weren't meant to have to process.  There is often no clear "passing over" from one phase of life to another.  Rather, it just occurs, and sometimes it is forced before a child's internal clock is ready.

This is why my heart rejoices that my son has grown up with "overprotective" parents who have kept the television off for the last twelve years and carefully monitored what he was exposed to.  It's because of that protectiveness that he will receive the information he needs from a source he can trust to not only be truthful, but one that has his best interest at heart.  Hollywood doesn't care about my son.  It doesn't love him.  It doesn't want to see him succeed. 

But, his father does.

And my son will be taught what it truly means to love a woman by a man who has modeled it for him his whole life.  He will learn that true intimacy is not cheap.  In fact, the only way to purchase it is by laying down your life and putting someone else's needs above your own.  He will discover that the world's instructions on how to be a man don't tell the whole story, and then he'll get to hear the rest of that story from the lips of one who has prayed for him before he was born.

And I wonder how many men in Hollywood had a father who did that for them?  And how many would trade their bank accounts if they could go back and experience something just like that?

And I wish I could tell them that it's never too late--that

if they didn't have that kind of father, they can be that kind of father.

  They just need to meet the Father who has known them before they were born.  For, it is He who writes upon our hearts how to love, and it is His voice that can lead them into true manhood, the epic adventure.