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Courageous Living (Part 5): Service

A courageous man serves from a heart in tune with his Father’s heart. The life of Christ will only become meaningful as you demonstrate it by allowing Him to live His life through you. We are all imitators and we are all leaders. Accept this fact. We already know the importance of having trusted men stand with us in life, but we must also make those closest to us part of our lives and stand by them.

In his book about fathers and sons, Bill Hanson writes about the relationship he has with his young son, Miles:

"If I am mowing the lawn, Miles mows the lawn also. If I am reading paper, Miles reads the paper. If I am thirsty, so is Miles. Amazing, but he is imitating my steps as I once copied my own father’s. Here is the cycle of life. We learn from our fathers, so we can teach our children."

Bill Hanson, Father and Son: The Bond (Austin, TX: Bright Books, 1996), p. 2.

Being a servant is not a meek, mild job. It is the job of a warrior, and it requires great courage. A servant who serves by choice of his will is secure in his identity and source. As a matter of fact, he is secure enough to lay his life down on behalf of another. Jesus Christ was the most courageous, strong man who ever lived. But His strength was not only exhibited when He drove the money changers out of the temple. It was also demonstrated when he went to bat for the woman caught in adultery, invited Himself to Zaccheus’ home for dinner, stopped to find out who touched His robe, and offered redemption to his friend, Peter, who had failed him miserably.

Being a dad is only one of the arenas where men are called upon to handle themselves courageously, but let me share a letter that came to our office written on the back of two door hangers. As you will see, this brother works for a cable company and door hangers were the stationery available at the time.

"Just a note saying thanks for your broadcast! I listen to WMBW in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

If there was a contest for listening to your program in the most unusual places it would have to be mine. When you are on the air I am usually 30-40 feet in the air up a power pole!

Enjoying your topic on being masculine and what it means. Being masculine to me means holding my 5 year old daughter protecting her from the lightening while reading her favorite story for the hundredth time. Or, camping with my 10 year old boy and explaining why God designed the bark on a tree for its protection and how He cared enough about us for that same tree to die so we can enjoy the fire we now have to cook our food.

In other words, masculinity is spending time with our children. Kids will long forget the ‘prizes’ or ‘gifts’ we give them before the memories of the time we spent with them fade away.

Thanks for your ministry."

In the context of courage, we have talked briefly about love, prayer, a disciplined lifestyle, encouragement, and a servant’s heart. These are just a few of the ways we offer practical redemption.

Brother, you can do these things and adopt these roles because you are secure in your significance. Make yourself vulnerable, share your heart, be transparent, you are anchored deeply enough to withstand whatever comes your way.

But I must remind you, you won’t get these things done by resolving to try harder or promising to do better. Remember, that is not the Father’s plan. He intends for you to depend upon Him as your source. Doing otherwise is walking after the flesh and disappointing to your Father, not to mention the bad example of masculinity it portrays for those who are watching you to see what manhood means. Trusting your Father is not an arrangement of convenience or a provision for those critical junctures when you realize you are sliding toward the ditch. If you intend to find satisfaction in your heart and fulfillment in your masculinity, depending upon your Father must be your lifestyle. C.S. Lewis writes, "Christ says, ‘Give me all. I don’t want so much of your time and so much of your money and so much of your work: I want you.’"

Preston Gillham

About the Author

As a co-founder, Preston Gillham led Lifetime for 30 years. Preston is a writer, speaker, and leadership guide. He has authored numerous articles and several books including No Mercy and Battle for the Round Tower. He blogs on “Life and Leadership”. More about Preston, his writings, speaking, and his consulting practice can be located at PrestonGillham.com.