Sunday, August 31, 2008
Where my real men at?
If you said, "right here!" Take a good look at yourself and ask that question again. What constitutes you as a "real man?" How society sees you and dictates you to be? Because your wife or girlfriend says you are? Or is it truly how you see yourself? Because if you don't feel, see, or think of yourself as a real man, it doesn't matter what you do, or what other people think or say about you, in your eyes you are not!
For a long time, I thought I was a "man." Because I had a job, took care of my responsibilities, in a sense, had a car and a house. However, I never "felt" like I was, because I didn't have the job I wanted, I wasn't making the money I wanted, nor was I where I wanted to be in life. It's easy to put on the "Man Mask" and portray what you think a man is, but eventually you have to take the mask off and look at your real self in the mirror. Face the demon that has consumed your soul and then ask yourself that same question.
I decided that being a man is not how society, my wife, my friends, co-workers, etc see me, but how I see and feel about myself. Depending on others for self esteem, doesn't make it yours, and depending on others to help you stand, will only make it that much easier to fall when they let go. So, GET UP, STAND UP! Be your own backbone, your own support system, put your faith and trust in God, be obedient to his word and allow him to guide you. That way you will have no doubts when you are asked, "Where my real men at?" For God made man in the image of himself, and he's as real as it gets!
Thursday, August 21, 2008
In a previous blog, I pondered the question, "Why Did I Get Married?" I said because I maybe wanted to be a player again, or marriage was out of obligation. Then I asked, "well if you are going to have a wedding, vow to be with the person in sickness and in health, and then years later want to leave them, WHY THE HELL GET MARRIED IN THE FIRST PLACE?" Now a few months later, I have been through an experience that has helped me to answer said question from before. Why Did I Get Married? Simple, because the woman I married is the woman I knew I loved and wanted to spend the rest of my life with. Point blank. Nothing else. Granted, throughout the marriage we all feel that it's getting too hard to maintain, or use "I don't want to be married anymore, I don't think I love you anymore," as an excuse to want some imaginary "freedom" from the tyranny of being with one person for the rest of your life.
In speaking with several married couples who have been together for 10 or more years, they have all told me the same thing: "Every couple goes through a period when they either wish they weren't married anymore, don't want to be married anymore, or feel they don't love their spouse anymore. But you learn to deal with that, knowing it's just a temporary effect because you miss the single life, having been tied down for a few years and you get tired. But marriage is a job, and if it were easy, everyone would do it, and the divorce rate would not be as high as it is now." Interesting. We, as young married couples, feel we are missing out on something in life when we settle down with one person, wanting to go and find a "bigger and better" thing after a while. But that's not what marriage is about. It's about commitment, a promise to God that is sacred and viewed by HIM as such.
It is not something to be taken for granted and then after you feel you have had enough you want to end it and move on to the next, thinking he will deliver, once again, to you the man or woman of your dreams. If you spit in his face, metaphorically, why would expect him to bless you again? You didn't take care of the first gift he gave you. So you must at least try to figure out and work at taking care of what he has in store for you. IF you pray for your mate to do what they should and for your marriage to get better, because things aren't going as you planned, he will make it happen. But you must remember HE works in his own way. He sometimes interjects with situations that challenge you, he takes you through a storm, so you can be better and stronger afterwards. HE wants his presence to be felt when he moves, so you can better appreciate it afterwards and know he is truly in charge. But if you refuse to take the challenge, what are you saying about God and your prayers? That you don't believe he can do it all? That you're giving up on God? This is not how you should approach marriage.
As I said before, most couples are geared up for the "Wedding" and don't realize that after all the glitz and glamour of flower throwing, bridesmaids, and cake cutting, the real marriage now begins. That was just the "orientation," if you will, now the employer expects you to now do what they hired you to do. What you said you would do. However, we get to a point where we are tired and don't want to try anymore and decide to just quit. Yet we don't take into consideration what the other person is going through and what they are putting them through. Our generation has become content with being labeled as "failures" when times get rough. We don't want to work through our problems, instead just shut everything and everybody out, forget about it and move on like it never existed just to please our own selfishness.
I got married for the long haul. I took every vow I said seriously. "In sickness and in health, for better or worse, till death do us part, keeping only to him/her." So I'm expected and dedicated to holding down my part. Now if the marriage is so bad, are we supposed to ignore that and deal with it? Depends, is the guilty one willing to make an effort to change? If so, then yes we should. Our parents went through much worse in their marriages and most of them are still together to this day. The couples who have been together 10, 20, 30, 40, 50 years did not quit when times got hard. And after all that time, I am sure they felt some form of resentment towards each other, but they still worked it out. Some got married for the wrong reasons, and sometimes it wasn't for love, but they worked at it and made it happen.
When we get married we need to realize for it to truly work, there must be open communication between the couple and not everyone else. They must be willing and able to speak to each other about what ever problems they are having with each other. It is through this communication that a marriage will work. How can you expect someone to change if you won't tell them what problem you have with them? How can you expect your mate to be what you would like them to be if you never tell them what that is? How can you expect for your spouse to love and respect you if you aren't taking the time to do the same?
I got married because I was and am willing to take that challenge. The challenges that are expected in a marriage. Granted, I, like many others, went through a selfish phase where I felt I didn't want this. We think there may be something better out there, and second guess what we have done. In Tyler's movie he referred to the 80/20 rule. You only get 80% of what you need. The other 20% is expendable. We think we can get that 20% elsewhere and for a while it seems like it will do. But in the end you realize 20% is definitely not sufficient and you miss having that 80. Marriage is by no means going to be all "roses" all the time. God challenges married couples and put them through trials and tribulations, so that they can get closer, stay closer, get and stay closer to him, realize how important they are to each other and in the end make them that much stronger. Scarred hands heal best.
Marriage is meant to be a lifetime, but if after a few years of problems you are ready to throw in the towel, how can you ever expect to be committed to anything else in life? Jobs are stressful, life is stressful. So do you just quit every job that challenges you? Do you just commit suicide because life has gotten too hard? A Godly person would not.
Bottom Line: Love, Commitment, and a Partner for life, is Why I Did Get married. So before you decide to take the job, research the job description and be sure you are ready and able to do the work.