1Co 13:11 When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.
2Sa 10:12 Be of good courage, and let us play the men for our people, and for the cities of our God: and the LORD do that which seemeth him good.
I. TOUGHEN-UP – Life is not always fair nor is it always easy. At best all of us struggle from time to time with experiences that we have beset us. Anger is not a help in negotiating the pitfalls of this life. Time and thoughtfulness and the Word of God applied can get us through any situation. Your way is not necessarily the best way. Attitude and appreciation are two very important items in getting through difficult situation. Sometimes we need our attitude adjusted to appreciate what we have received or the situation we are in.
II. STAND-UP – It is a simple thing to stand up when a woman or the elderly enter a room. This is common courtesy and decency. This item in not about that. It is addressing standing up for what is right and decent and morally acceptable. It also address the idea of when we have done something wrong, stand up and admit it with humility instead of striking out at those that correct you. Babies strike out because they don’t know better because they are, well babies. They suck a bottle. Be a man. Stand up and say – I did it, I am sorry, I was wrong and I deserve the punishment that I will receive. I will strive to do better.
III. GET-UP – Get your day started off right, Get Up and Make Up your bed. That is your first accomplishment of the day. If you can not accomplish that small thing, there is not much else you can accomplish. Get Up and get yourself ready for the task that is at hand. If it is a job first thing in the morning, get up in time to get dressed and eat and get to work 15 minutes early, eager to earn your money. This will be a recommendation to a better job with better pay. Do not be a quitter. When a prospective employer sees a quitter, they know you won’t be long working for them before you quit.
IV. SHUT-UP – Shut up. Learn when to speak and when not to speak. It is never good to react immediately with the first thing that enters your mind. You need to take the time think seriously about your reply. Most immediate replies are defensive replies spit out in anger. They are hurtful and often make little sense. There is a saying – It is better to remain quiet and be thought stupid than to open your mouth and remove all doubt. Continual badgering will not influence parents that truly love you. It will turn bosses away from you and bring you closer to being fired. There is always a warm body just waiting for you to get fired so that they can get your cushy job and maybe even do better work than you do. Just SHUT-UP.
V. LISTEN-UP – Listen to others. If you want others to listen to you, then learn that you have 2 ears and 1 mouth. That means listen more and talk less. If someone said, you put your arm between those two wheels and it will break your arm, that is the voice of experience. Experience is the best friend you can have next to your parents. Your parents are the best you can have. What does experience do for you? It keeps you from having broken arms, broken legs and broken heads. Your peers, your friends your age can never give you the guidance and direction that a parent or older person can give. They have traveled this road you are about to travel. They have a wealth of knowledge. They have had the broken arms, broken legs, and broken heads. There is more though. A broken soul. Do you know what a soul is? It is emotions and mental abilities. These can be broken. They can also be fixed if one is willing to listen. They can be fixed if one is willing to be loved deeply and return love. This comes with experience. Parents and old people have that experience of broken hearts and deep felt emotions that bring tears and weeping. They have experienced broken hearts because of children going astray and possibly being hurt and ruin their lives. They struggle each day because of their desire for their children to not suffer what they have suffered and not to hurt the way they have hurt. This is a reason to LISTEN-UP.
VI. WISE-UP – To what is going on around you. There are many pitfalls in life. We must be aware of them. There are characters that say they are our friend but would lead us to destruction. Destruction of our character, destruction of our reputation, and destruction of our very lives. Let me tell you what a true friend is. A true friend cares for you so much that he will not lead you to do immoral or illegal things but will instead warn you to not do those things. A true friend will help you to do the RIGHT thing. A true friend will not be rebellious against the authority of parents, school officials, police officers or those older than you. Surround yourself with good friends and learn from them and make them the best friends you have.
VII. GROW-UP – There is nothing worse than being around a teenager or adult that is a whiny, crying, sullen brat. My dad used to say to me – act your age not your IQ. The assumption that is made is that teenagers are maturing and becoming responsible men and women. Sometimes that is not true. They are remained bottle babies and pout and sulk when they don’t get their way. Your age might indicate that your body is maturing but the mind is still in that stage where you are sucking milk from the bottle. You are a bottle baby. A big body with a baby mind and attitude. It is time grow up and move toward man-hood or woman-hood knowing that when we reach that magic age of 18 that we are ready go out in the world and make it on our own. I find it interesting that so many that are called men and women today that are 18-30 years old are living in mom and dads basement because they could not cope with the real world. A man 30 years old was taken to court by his mother and father to get an order for him to move out of their home.
IX. PAY-UP – Pay what you owe. Pay the Lord first. He is worthy of a minimum of 10% of your income or allowance. One you learn this then pay for the bills you make. I received a ticket one time and told my dad. He said, you got it, you pay it. If you don’t have the money, you spend that time in jail. I knew my dad was serious. If I went to jail, I knew there would be no visits. I knew I would be blessed if dad would come pick me up after they let me out of jail. Dad would not be proud to have a jailbird as a son. As long as you have a job pay up. Save enough to treat the family to ice cream cones once in a while. You driving? Pay for your own gas and pay the extra insurance on the car and be a man about it and quit your belly-aching.
X. DRESS-UP – There is not need to look homeless or like a slob or a jock all the time. Dress-up. A man in a suit is very impressive and shows maturity in choice of dress. A man in a Polo type shirt or a button up shirt with a nice pair of slacks is acceptable anywhere. Dress-up to go to church, that is what a mature man does. It honors God. Dress-up when you go to events and to town. It shows a measure of maturity and an amount of responsibility when in the presence of others.
May we show others our maturity by the way we live our lives. It is a day when slovenliness is practiced and accepted. Let us be a man and model our lives in such a way that other say, – NOW THERE GOES A MAN.