Calling all young men with a blossoming Love for Christ! Your time has come, brothers. You have been called up.
“It is my wish, then, that in every place the men should pray, lifting up holy hands, without anger or argument.” – 1 Timothy 2:8
We need you and your manliness to take one for the team and be Catholic dudes. Step out of the blogosphere every day and be Catholic dudes for lost and struggling dudes.
We need men to step up unabashedly and show us why even the best examples of men in the media fall short of what we deserve and what our world deserves. Yes, we’re human, but that doesn’t mean we should aim to eat from the dumpster when there’s a feast waiting in heaven (source: Jason Evert).
Barney from How I Met Your Mother: Please, men, show us how satirical this terrible example is for men. Show us how his hyperbolic “player” ways are insulting to men and women alike every time he tricks a woman into going home with him and proceeds to talk about it like he won a little league trophy.
Gibbs from NCIS: Believe me, I am definitely a fan of this man and his stoic heroism, but he’s not the best male figure on TV. He got married three times after his true love, his first wife, was murdered. He avenged the murders of his wife and daughter in a brutal, execution-style sniping. This man takes morality into his own hands, following his own rule book. Men, we need you to show us how affirming humility and vulnerability before your Father are.
House from House: Why is this cynical doctor so handsome? House is the iconic atheist who keeps getting “tricked” into encountering God, yet he consistently rebukes Him. Where are the men showing the depth of God’s impact in their lives so that real-life House might be taken aback by the commitment of a true man of faith?
Jim from The Office: I’m taking my life into my own hands by listing Jim amongst these less-than-savory (yet, curiously handsome) characters. Hear me out. Jim is certainly the “nice guy” protagonist, especially when compared to other (hilarious) characters on the show. However, he doesn’t always show Love for those who surround him (raise your hand if you want to put a stapler in Jell-O™ right now?). Also, if he really valued Pam for the woman he knew her to be when they were just friends, he would have waited even longer until they were married before having sex. I realize that is counter to our culture and that a comment like that lights a fire under the eager commenter’s tuckus, but someone who truly loves someone wouldn’t need to sleep with them to complete their relationship curve. Men: be men who stand up and say this when the opportunity presents itself.
Flip on the TV and you will come up with a list as long as the day for examples of who we’re battling. Don’t get me started on professional athletes!
Let us not be discouraged. They’ve done the work for us by gathering our foe characteristics there on the small (and large) silver screen. The writers, directors, and agents gave us our starting point and our guide by which we choose NOT to live our lives.
Find the time to impress upon the younger men you encounter how fulfilled you are by being a faithful brother in Christ. Pull your younger and older cousins aside at Thanksgiving and share with them a few wholesome stories and exclamations of “Wow, God is awesome!” Volunteer with a local youth ministry or Catholic campus ministry group to be the iconic “older dude” who is still cool enough to listen to.
Men, there is a short window of time in which you are both totally rad (take note: they don’t say this anymore) and still have some authority. Think about it this way: some teenager, somewhere is prepped and ready to hang on your every, Holy-Spirit-guided word.
Make sure your words and actions are worth hanging on and actively seek those to guide.
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