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Are you an authentic man? (arztsamui/Free Digital Photos)

So how about it—are you an authentic man? Really?

When did that happen? When did you decide you were a man? Who told you, and who gave you the rite of passage to manhood?

Many cultures have clearly defined rites of passage to manhood. A ritual is observed—a celebration with the community, a mark on the forehead or the fulfillment of a challenge confirms him.

In Western culture, when a boy becomes a man, we mark small rites, such as when a boy gets a driver’s license, is eligible for the military or is old enough to purchase alcohol, but we do not have spiritual rites of passage into manhood. Marriage is considered by some to be the closest recognition of movement into manhood. The definition of manhood in our time is confused. When do we recognize a male as a man?

Our sons step into manhood without fanfare or celebration. We don’t define it. We don’t have set principles that govern what authentic manhood is.

As Dr. Myles Munroe says, “When the purpose is unknown, abuse is inevitable.”

We are witnessing the inevitable abuse of manhood. The last 40 years have wreaked havoc on authentic manhood. The feminization of men is displayed in a constant barrage of media imagery. Almost every male represented on television is either a metrosexual pretty boy or a slovenly buffoon. Every reality show has to have its token effeminate male. It’s embarrassing.

This assault on authentic masculinity has a very broad impact. I won’t go through the barrage of statistics that support my claims; suffice it to say that the destruction of authentic manhood is having enormous repercussions on society. Some subcultures are already reeling from the loss of authentic manhood.

Fatherless children are being raised with the insecurities that come from the loss of identity. Women are being left defenseless against the enmity that exists against them. The economic decline caused by the loss of male integrity is immeasurable.

“Never remove a fence until you know why it was put up.” —Unknown

Boundaries are important. The foundation of manhood is being redefined. Unless we know why the male is a man or what man is assigned to do or become, we will live abusive lives. We may abuse our own bodies with addictions, such as alcohol, drugs or food. We may abuse ourselves sexually and experience the degradation of our bodies through STDs or AIDS. The frustrations of unknown purpose may cause us to abuse our wives and misunderstand the true value of the male/female relationship.

Extremes take over. We will either become obsessive chauvinists or emasculated weaklings.

But to discover purpose, you simply need to look at original intent. Why did God create man?

FivestarMan was founded in 2008 by Neil KennedyKennedy has passionately promoted God’s Word for 25-plus years of ministry. He is known for practically applying biblical principles that elevate people to a new level of living. As a business, church, ministry and life consultant, Kennedy has helped others strategize the necessary steps to reach their full potential.

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