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Do the Hard Work

Daily Reading: 1 Corinthians 7

Scripture Focus: But because of the temptation to sexual immorality. (1 Corinthians 7.2)

Devotional Thought: I got myself in trouble once... (Yeah, yeah, yeah... I hear you thinking, "Only once?") Well the one time that I'm thinking about, had to do with a young boy and his sister in the church fellowship hall. She was picking on him and he came crying to his mom. I happened to be sitting there and piled it on: "What? I thought you were a big boy! Be a man!" He went and hit his sister. "Whoa! I didn't mean that! Just man up and work it out..." Mom didn't buy it. She wasn't too happy with me.

I recently read an article about the demise of masculinity. The author - a female - bemoaned the fact that men were unwilling - or unable - to do the hard work of being a man. It seems that conversation and relationships are being surrendered by 'emasculated' males, cowed by the current climate of political correctness. Even intimacy is giving way to the three p's: porn, prostitution, and puppets! That's not healthy. It's neither good for men or women.

Paul wrote that intimate, monogamous relationships (marriages) are important, because of the temptation to sexual immorality. Being a man was not about having sex with as many partners as possible, or about surrendering sexual satisfaction. To Paul, being a man meant doing the hard work of remaining pure until marriage, and faithful within marriage. That sounds to me like doing the hard work of relationships.

What does it mean to be a man? Jesus, of course, was the perfect Man. His manhood was expressed by doing the hard work of laying down his life for his Bride - the Church. To be real men and women today, we need to do the hard work of relationships.

Prayer: Jesus, thank you for being the example of the perfect man. And, thank you for giving us the power to be the man or woman you created us to be. Help us to live into that potential! Amen.

Psalm of the Day: Psalm 113.4-9

4 The Lord is high above all nations,

and his glory above the heavens!

5 Who is like the Lord our God,

who is seated on high,

6 who looks far down

on the heavens and the earth?

7 He raises the poor from the dust

and lifts the needy from the ash heap,

8 to make them sit with princes,

with the princes of his people.

9 He gives the barren woman a home,

making her the joyous mother of children.

Praise the Lord!

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