Taken from John Eldredge’s book “Wild at Heart: Discovering the Secret of a Man’s Soul” from Chapter 11 titled “An Adventure to Live” pg. 203.
What Are We Men Waiting For?
“Where would we be today if Abraham had carefully weighed the pros and cons of God’s invitation and decided that he’d rather hang onto his medical benefits, three weeks paid vacation, and retirement plan in Ur? What would have happened if Moses had listened to his mother’s advice to “never play with matches” and lived a careful, cautious life steering clear of burning bushes? You wouldn’t have the gospel if Paul had concluded that the life of a Pharisee, while not everything a man dreams for, was at least predictable and certainly more stable than following a voice he heard on the Damascus Road. After all, people hear voices all the time and who really knows whether it’s God or just one’s imagination? Where would we be if Jesus was not fierce and wild and romantic to the core? Come to think of it, where would we all be at all if God hadn’t taken that enormous risk of us in the first place?
Most men spend the energy of their lives trying to eliminate risk, or squeezing it down to a more manageable size. Their children hear “no” far more than they hear “yes”; their employees feel chained up and their wives are equally bound. If it works, if a man succeeds in securing his life against all risk, he’ll wind up in a cocoon of self-protection and wonder why he’s suffocating. If it doesn’t work, he curses God, redoubles his efforts and his blood pressure. When you look at the structure that false self-made men tend to create, it always revolves around two themes: seizing upon some sort of competence and rejecting anything that cannot be controlled. As David Whyte says, “The price of our vitality is the sum of all our fears.”
For murdering his brother, God sentences Cain to the life of a restless wanderer; five verses later Cain is building a city (Gen 4:12, 17). That sort of commitment – the refusal to trust God and then reach for greater control – runs deep in every man. Whyte talks about the difference between the false self’s desire “to have power over experience, to control all events and consequences, and the soul’s wish to have power through experience, no matter what that may be. You literally sacrifice your soul and your true power when you insist on controlling things, like the guy Jesus talked about who thought he had finally pulled it all off, built some really nice barns and died the same night. “What will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?” (Mark 8:36 NKJV). By the way, I now realize I can lose my soul long before I die.”
Again, what are we men waiting for? As children, we all begin with our perceptions. Later, as we become men gaining wisdom, His Truth becomes our reality diminishing the prevalent deceptions. mle091122