do i have what it takes?
“I have written to you, children, because you have come to know the Father. I have written to you, fathers, because you have come to know the One who is from the beginning. I have written to you, young men, because you are strong, God's word remains in you, and you have had victory over the evil one.” – 1 John 2:14
One of the best parts of my job is working with young men. Many have graduated from school and are beginning their careers. Culture refers to this age group as millennials, but I don’t.
The stereotype doesn’t fit the young men I know. Many of my friends invested in the lives of high school kids while they were in college, and some still are, while they work their first job. Some have traveled to Haiti and Costa Rica with me, to share their faith with others.
I’ve listened to them, as they seek to understand how God’s Word applies to their lives and work to reconcile His unfailing love with the injustices of our world. There are common themes to our conversations.
Like men my age once wondered, these young men want to know if they have what it takes. It’s a question every man faces. Do I have what it takes?
Ambition may take us down a fast path at work, as we press to not just be in the big meeting, but be the one leading it. Only when we find ourselves leading others, we begin to experience the question at a deeper level. Yes, I’ve found enough success to lead, but can I lead these people through our next crisis? Do I have what it takes??
If we answer this question at work, achieving greater success than expected, then the question may haunt us at home.
Do I have what it takes to be the husband my wife deserves? Sure, I sold her on the idea of me, but do I have the strength and ability to actually be the man of her dreams?
Is it possible for me to be the dad our little ones need? Will I be wise enough in making and saving money to provide for them?
As an older guy, with mostly highway miles, let me answer. Yes, you have what it takes.
We hear of a soldier’s daring rescue or read a story about a young warrior protecting his remote village from a lion, and we wonder. Am I that brave, and capable?
The Lord didn’t short you. He has given you everything you need.
”The Lord is my Shepherd. I have all that I need.” – David, Psalm 23:1
In His infinite wisdom, The Lord made you for perfectly, for this time, this season and the challenges you will face.
There’s not a man around who faces big events without butterflies. Holding your child for the first time should take your breath away. Walking into a high-stakes sales meeting, purchasing your first house or taking a leap of faith should give you pause. Anxiety, worry and doubt are okay, as long as we let them take us to The Lord.
By trusting our lives to Christ, we have come into His family and become His sons. His heirs.
Mature men in the faith, do you recall your first of many life experiences? Let me encourage you to share it with your sons and a few young men in your church, or at your office.
They need the benefit of your experience. You need their questions and concerns. It will drive you deeper in your faith and force you to become the mature believer God made you to be. There’s so much life in investing in the lives of younger men.
Young men, we know from Ephesians 1:18-21 the same great power that raised Christ from the dead is resident in you, as a believer. If God is for you, who can be against you?
The birth of my son overwhelmed me. I knew my desire to be a great dad, and my capacities were two different things at that time. The challenge drove me to God’s Word, where I found wisdom, hope, promises and courage. And I also found Him.
Go to Jesus and His Word. Meet with an older brother. Share your heart. Let him encourage you.
Remember, God who made you has given you everything you need, to do all He has called you to do. You have what it takes.