He wasn’t the blue-eyed, blonde-haired, sweet Jesus depicted in so many paintings. And when he walked the earth, he wasn’t some sort of soft-spoken, passive, Yoda-like sage. No. Jesus was a man’s man, in every sense of that phrase. He knew moments of fear and bravery. Jesus stared down Satan in the desert for 40 days. He sweated blood. He took nails in his hands. But he also knew the reality of work and the courage it takes to do the same job day in and day out. As a carpenter’s son, he probably spent more of his life doing monotonous tasks than he did doing miracles. Yet, Jesus also knew how to be tender and caring. He cared for his mom. He was compassionate with the needy. When he corrected others, he did it in love. He was both tough and tender.
One of our favorite descriptions of Jesus occurs in 1 Corinthians 15:45. In that passage, the Apostle calls Jesus a “life-giving Spirit.” That’s the real Jesus. Wherever he went, Jesus infused life into people. He modeled Authentic Manhood by living His life to bless others, to encourage others, to build them up, and to give His life for their benefit. He always brought a life-giving energy and an others-centered focus. And he sparked a movement that changed mankind more than any other life or movement in the history of the world.
But’s here’s another awesome reality: Jesus not only was life-giving. Jesus is life-giving. He can strengthen and give life to you today. The apostle Paul tells the Philippians, “I can do all things through him [Jesus] who strengthens me” (Phil 4:13). He tells the Ephesians “Be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might” (Eph 6:10). He tells Timothy, “I thank him who has given me strength, Christ Jesus our Lord” (1 Tim 1:12). And he tells the Corinthians that “God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work” (2 Cor 9:8). Jesus is alive today and he promises to provide strength, grace, and life to his followers so they can accomplish his tasks on this earth. Jesus can strengthen you as you pursue Authentic Manhood. He can provide you with the perseverance or the boldness you need at work. He can provide the motivation or the energy you need at home. The real Jesus was, and still is, life-giving. Authentic Men follow his example and ask for his help.
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