Becoming a Man

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Verses for today

“When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me.”

‭‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭13:11‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.”

‭‭Philippians‬ ‭4:8‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Practical application

Paul mentions three aspects of becoming a man here by putting his childhood ways behind him:

  1. Talking like a child
  2. Thinking like a child &
  3. Reasoning like a child

I thought I will explore what this really means practically so I may always implement it in my life.

I think the starting point is our thoughts that impacts our reasoning and then comes out of our mouths. So in essence 2,3 and then 1.

Do you sometimes feel like you are still a child inside and just would like to hide out from the bad world out there and just play games all day long.

We feel incapable of dealing with the stresses of life and all the responsibilities out there seeing that it is not going according to our plan we set out for our lives or where we are expected to be.

Or like the doctor put it; ‘our basic sense of self hasn’t sufficiently evolved into the actual adult we’ve become. Our chronological age, our body, our mind may all say “adult” . . . but our psyche nonetheless continues to say “child.” ‘

The cause of anxiety in our lives can really be found to be birthed through your deeper feelings of insecurity caused by our childlike inability mindset.

So in short we feel insecure in dealing with our current situation in a mature, grownup manner.

It is like the thoughts of our childhood ito fears and doubts, have finally become true in our current life and we don’t know how to deal with that by ‘escaping’ from our current situation.

‘Escaping’ might take the form of drugs, alcohol, eating disorders or just doing nothing by watching television, movies or playing games all day long; to not think about our current situation that we have to deal with or to come up with a solution.

Let us explore point no. 2; thinking like a child. Reading Dr. Seltzer analogy on “I Feel Like a Child” Syndrome brought to light that in our current situation we feel insecure to deal with a situation in our life currently and reverting to how we would deal with it as a child in that situation.

Eg. is how we deal with say the loss of our job. We might feel we are not good, capable or clever enough to do a certain job that has been assigned to us in our present situation which we completed successfully in the past.

We might feel our CV is not up to scratch or we haven’t gained sufficient experience the field of work per se.

You might have gone from job to job and haven’t “settled” like most of your peers have done in their life.

When you get to your matric reunion you are still the same person you were then and you almost drive the same car as you did then.

Life as it seem has stood still and you start asking yourself where did things go wrong. We haven’t found our place in the world per se.

In essence we feel vulnerable in our current situation and we feel trapped seeing that we could not fix this situation as we did before.

So what is the telltale signs that we might find ourselves in this situation?

Isn’t it being indecisive and not making a plan to solve our problems following different strategies until something works?

Or isn’t it the lack of perseverance in not believing in yourself that you can make a difference completing projects or strategies you have implemented in your life.

I am thinking of Ray Kroc who believed so much in his recipe that he showed it to over a 1000 people before someone believed in him.

Don’t we all appreciate Ray’s perseverance today?

It is in a sense; our child mindset has not been solved by our mature mindset so we resolve back to our childhood mindset where we felt safe and taken care of by not having the responsibility to solve problems by ourselves. We need external direction and authority to make decisions.

Emotionally things can manifest them in the following overblown feelings:

  • Being over dramatic and defensive (fight or flight mode – I have been thrown in the lions den and need to protect myself and get out)
  • Being withdrawn and lonely (victim mode – I have been bitten / beaten by the lion and there is no hope for me at all)

According to Paul Mattiuzzi there are four coping mechanism: “4 Fs of Stress: Beyond Fight or Flight”.

  1. Change my perception of the event.

– Setback / Hardships is Opportunities in Disguise

– Frustrations is only Challenges

– Insults is Unworthy of my attention

– Being Depressed is the Absence of Counting your Blessings

2. Choose to change, escape or avoid the situation causing our distress.

– Fleeing the lion takes less energy

– You are not up to facing that bully in your job, relationship or situation.

3. Enhance our coping skills and ego strengths.

– Go on a course

– Get a mentor

– Ask for help

4. Change the way our bodies react or interrupt the stress response as it starts.

– Take a deep breath before you decide what to do about the lion

– Exercise regularly

– Go to bed early

– Eat healthy

The opposites of the spectrum:

  • Child Mindset — Adult Mindset
  • Feel like a Child — Know that ur an Adult
  • Not Old enough — Mature
  • Self-doubt — Self-confidence
  • Cannot convince yourself you know what ur doing — Other believe you know what ur doing
  • Inwardly not feeling up to it but Outwardly coping with things — Outwardly dealing with things because Inwardly you feel up to it
  • Being Criticized — Being Praised
  • Feeling Deflated — Feeling Elated
  • Our Parents haven’t moved on from us being their Children — Our Parents see us as Adults and treat us that way
  • Others Authority — Our Own Authority
  • Feelings of fear, inadequacy & powerlessness — Confident, Authoritative & Powerful
  • Hooks (Memories) Highjack Self — Competent Adult Rescues them from their Past
  • Trapped in their Memory — Victors of their Memory
  • Photo’s of a Child – Photo’s of Adult
  • Insecure, constrained and self-doubting child – Evolved Adult by accessing, making peace and integrating the child through self-actualization

Actions – Negative vs Positive

  1. Making Excuses & Blame shifting — Take Responsibility
  2. Vague Apologies — Detailed Apologies & Ask for Forgiveness
  3. Talking the Talk — Walking the Walk
  4. Talk about Work — Work Quietly
  5. Aimless & Foolish Talk — Talk about Christ & The Kingdom
  6. Talk about Myself — Ask Questions & Listening to Others
  7. Tearing down People — Building up People
  8. Speaking at any Time — Know when to Speak up
  9. Talk to Women like Men — Talk to Women as Women
  10. Selfish Talk — Talk to Women with Respect & Dignity
  11. Talking to Women as Sex Objects — Talk to Women as Queens
  12. Silent when men talk Poorly about Women — Confront Them
  13. Letting someone else pastor my wife — Pastoring my Wife self
  14. Harsh words — Gentle snd Understanding Way
  15. Silent about my Kids — Affirm them
  16. Someone else pastor my Kids — I pastor my Kids self
  17. Weak Speech — Strong Speech
  18. Silent — Speaking the Truth in Love
  19. Fearful & Compromising Speech — Speak Courageously
  20. Insecure Speech — Speech with Confidence & Conviction
  21. Breaking — Keeping my Word
  22. Movement — Progress
  23. Dreams — Goals Daily
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