Defining a man of God
by Gil Hanke
Sometimes, events in my world either complement each other, or collide with each other.
The last few weeks present examples of both.
I have been in settings with men of various ages, ethnicities, and backgrounds who, strived honestly to answer questions of faith and questions of God’s blessing for them. Some were men I have known for years; but some equally honest discussions were with men I had known for only a few minutes. In both large and small settings, we were unified by our hope for each other as we discern God’s call on how we are to use the days God has lent us.
We each considered those worldly accomplishments that drove us to complete, assured they would be the “answer;” only to find no satisfaction. We were able to relate how injury and harm had been transformed by God into wholeness. Each of us had known personal loss, and through God’s grace, these losses are now healed as scars, not scabs.
Regardless of age, status, race, place of origin, we were all sinners seeking God’s direction and growing closer together, and closer to God. To put this simply, we were; we are filled with hope.
Then I saw the horrible pictures on the news; images of hate, of men claiming their “God-given superiority,” which is contrary to God’s love and God’s word. These angry men demanded to be first, demanded privilege, and demanded status in some god’s name, with all the pride of Saul of Tarsus.
I pray that the loving Christ, as the Prince of Peace, will blind these persons who claim to be “real men” so that they may see the light of your love for all. Remove their burdens, forgive their use of your name to justify hate. Let them have the view you gave in the transformation of Saul to Paul in his letter to the Galatians (3:26—29)
“You are all God’s children through faith in Christ Jesus. All of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek; there is neither slave nor free; nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. Now if you belong to Christ, then indeed you are Abraham’s descendants, heirs according to the promise.”
If we claim to belong to Christ then help us to find ways to love God and love all our neighbors. We pray for healing of our land, and that our hope and assurance in Christ will never fade.