"Now the days of David drew nigh that he should die; and he charged Solomon his son, saying, I go the way of all the earth: be thou strong therefore, and shew thyself a man; And keep the charge of the LORD thy God, to walk in his ways, to keep his statutes, and his commandments, and his judgments, and his testimonies, as it is written in the law of Moses, that thou mayest prosper in all that thou doest, and whithersoever thou turnest thyself:" (1 Kings 2:1-3)
"You're kidding right?", That's usually the first response. Sometimes escapee's from local medeival festivals wander in, and find out they're in the wrong meeting...that's always fun.
But the truth is, we are deadly serious, too much of what it means to be a man has been lost to popular culture that we feel the time has come to reclaim the lost pieces of ourselves to be whole again.
First, man is defined by his relationship to God. The Knight is unapoligetically Christian, but strong, magnanimous, generous, gentle, and diplomatic. In keeping the true faith of Jesus Christ, no knight can usurp authority over the free moral conscience of another to dictate the faith for that free soul.
As Christians, we confess our inability to satisfy God's standard of righteousness in or of ourselves. Having been led as we believe to throw ourselves on the sufficiency of Christ's sacrifice on our behalf, though offered to all, we accept it individually, and thereby partake in the redemptive work of Jesus by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone.
Second, man is defined by a certain authority, protective responsibility, leadership by example first, and sacrificial gentleness to our wives and children, in the spirit, and empowerment of our benefactor, Jesus Christ.
Thirdly, a man's quality is known in his stand for, and against certain things. As Knights of True North we assert three things...
"IT" can be known.
HE is seeking you.
Truth is not perspective. Truth is fact. Truth is not a passive principle, reserved for the elite, or enlighted. Truth is an active person...Jesus Christ. Jesus identified his purpose on earth in Luke 19:10
"The Son of man is come to seek and to save that which is lost."
Fourthly, we embrace the responsibilty to provide for, and to protect our families, our Chruches, and our Nation from all enemies foreign, and domestic. As such we embrace the martial culture of the knight with a sensitivity to modern conventions.
Fifth, we accept our role a nurturer, and mentor for the next generation of Son's, and Daughters, and strive to do all to the glory of God.
Daughters usually get overlooked within the conversation of what it means to be a man due the fact that their not attempting to be mentored into being "a man" of character...but there are a few reasons why this is a tragic oversight:
1. Daughters can be as formidable allies in the cause of righteousness as a son can be...and frequently young ladies are socially more adept.
2. If we as fathers fail to engage our daughters within our questing for personal character, and the leaving of a legacy, they we've become foolish, and hypocritical, since the vulnerable nature daughters demands a wholesome and healthy mentoring relationship with a father...
Concretely, if we fail to be an adequate father to our daughters, defining all along what is the measure of a man, then what sort of "men" will they choose for husbands? Let us set the bar high and help our daughters demand better for themselves, in their most permanent human relationship.
Son's are vulnerable as well, but in different ways. Young men who do not engage their roles with in the family frequent fall into societally antagonist roles, like gangs, drugs, and illicit sex...If the male drive to provide and protect is not anchored and given wholesome expression, it will, and frequently does find harmful, destructive expression.
And these failing whether in ourselves, or our children, or their relationships has a "nuclear effect" and is "chain reactive"... it tends to be self validating. So, we engage our responsibilities to act as "control rods" to slow the societal "meltdown" we see going on around us every day...that is how we see ourselves as a restraining force against evil, spiritually, societally, and literally. If this isn't what defines a man, well then, it should be, and perhaps together, we can call such an identity into being. Let's walk together, you and I.