What was it in the films “Braveheart” and “Gladiator” that still appeals to men, so much so, that both films are stacked in thousands of men’s DVD collections at home?
I know what they both represented in me…
Courage driven by a passion of values.
In both films the heroes lost their loved ones. From that moment on, both characters set their faces like flint (à la Isaiah 50:7) and would not stop at anything until mission accomplished.
I think every man wants to identify with heroes like those. Every man wants to aspire to be just like them. Gone are the days when Superman was the hero du jour. Now…it’s PASSION over a cause that men want. And I think it’s because men have had their passion over the years eroded by changes in our culture.
I had lunch with one of my best friends—a 91-year-old war veteran who flew planes in the South Pacific. Howard told me that when World War II was in full swing, when Americans were fighting in both the Pacific and in Europe and Africa, the entire nation was driven by the war effort. Everyone was united and so focused on winning that hardly anyone spoke of anything else. Nearly every man in the country was chomping at the bit to fight for freedom. And while they did, their women were active in factories, manufacturing supplies for the cause.
We have lost that, men. We have been criticized, feminized, and mesmerized by intimidation coming our way. Since the hippie movement in the 1960’s (something I lived through), fighting for a cause was no longer a noble thing unless it was a fight against the establishment—any establishment, even if it was good. Superman of the 50’s was taken out in the 60’s by a kryptonite of Krishna-ism. Good became bad, noble became ignoble, and pure became out of touch.
But now is the time.
Now is the time to recapture what we were placed on this earth for.
Now is the time to join the ranks of martyrs before us and martyrs among us. Yes, that’s what I said. We may not die for our Christianity like hundreds of others are EVEN TODAY in other parts of the globe. But we need to seek and seize the passion that the LORD of Lords has added to the mix when He shaped us men at birth.
Now is the time to identify with the loss of our “loved ones”—not our immediate family members like those in the two films, but the loved ones who’ve preceded us some 2000 years ago. Loved ones mentioned in Hebrews 11:35-38:
There were others who were tortured, refusing to be released so that they might gain an even better resurrection. Some faced jeers and flogging, and even chains and imprisonment. They were put to death by stoning; they were sawed in two; they were killed by the sword. They went about in sheepskins and goatskins, destitute, persecuted and mistreated—the world was not worthy of them. They wandered in deserts and mountains, living in caves and in holes in the ground.
Then there are our loved ones whose fate was recorded in history just a few years later; those who were sliced in two by Roman swords, who were impaled on long wooden poles, who were fed to ravenous animals in the Coliseum, who were crucified by the hundreds along the Appian Way (the main road leading into Rome), then lit on fire as human torches, the glow of which was seen for hundreds of miles.
Now is the time for courage in an era where literally millions of orphans (163 million, to be exact) are wasting away in so-called “welfare” institutes and children “care” centers, reminiscent of Hitler’s cowards torturing prisoners in “work camps.”
The documentary I saw recently, entitled “Bulgaria’s Abandoned Children,” will shake your world--children…CHILDREN…with skin hanging on skeletons like miniature Auschwitz victims. Children peering outside their institutions at cemeteries awaiting their fate.
Meanwhile, the men of God sleep.
Meanwhile, the men of God brush and blow-dry their hair before going to yet another men’s breakfast.
Meanwhile, the men of God hum and haw about which new car to buy next, while running the three-legged race at a summer men’s camp.
Meanwhile, the men of God close ranks in their family, draw a line in the sand, and tell God, “I will here and no farther!”
Men of God, RISE UP! RISE UP! RISE UP!
We have a church down our street that told a family they will not allow them to have a fundraising dinner in their hall so they can adopt a desperate orphan. Why? Because if they did that, they’d have to allow everyone to do the same. What?!
Men of God, I am not calling for rebellion. I am calling for REVOLUTION!
And the place to start is on your knees.
Get before the Lord and your family and repent of not being a man. Not being a man of God!
Do you not realize that the true heroes and warriors of world history were men of God?
What has happened to us that we allowed a society to suck the passion of God out of us?
Then get off your knees and tell your family that new things now matter. That this life is not worth saving. That you will no longer save for a retirement that will not last anyway.
That you will put up with inconvenience…
and hard work…
and an old age that may not mean all of the kids are out of the house…
and that you will now, once and for all, trust the Lord Jesus Christ, the LION OF JUDAH, with your sustenance, your family’s sustenance, your joy in life, your purpose in life, YOUR LIFE!
Man up and rise up, men of God.
Be on a perpetual reconnaissance mission to seek out ways in which to live kingdom life—to obey our Lord’s commands to care for the orphan and the widow, to visit the sick and the prisoner, to feed the poor.
Think: 163,000 million orphans on the face of the planet is not a world problem. IT…IS…OUR…PROBLEM!
I beg you, let the Christ in you, the Lion of Judah, wield the sword of Truth and lead your family by your courageous example.
Shun mediocrity and GO TO WAR!
Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? YOU ARE A MIST that appears for a little while and then vanishes.
~ James 4:13-14