Lessons on Manhood from the NC Tornadoes

Many of you know that this past Saturday (the day before Palm Sunday, one might note), several cuts of tornadoes ripped through central and eastern North Carolina. Sunday afternoon, several men, women, and families who love Jesus headed to downtown Raleigh. Men, women, children, and total strangers working together to help the neighborhood – it was a sight to behold.

But, while swinging a hatchet and lopping off branches, I noticed something . . . peculiar. While many people over the age of 20 came to help, I only counted one person, outside of our own church group, younger than 20 years old.

Let that sink in for a moment. Young people walked up and down the streets, playing with their friends and chatting on the phone, but one came to help. One young man for 4 blocks of city. One young man.

Now, for the young ladies, I understand the reticence. Most probably don’t feel the ability or desire to go haul off trees. Several young women from our church came to help out, but most of those were in college or beyond.

The young men, however, have more than a few advantages over other workers:

  • unbounded energy
  • younger, more injury-resistant bodies
  • an calling, of one sort or another, to work outside for the rest of their lives
  • lots of free time

All of this begs the question: where were Raleigh’s young men yesterday? Were they working (on a Sunday?), too busy playing video games (their most popular pastime), or just plain lazy?

To help my city, its young men, and the rest of its residents, here we offer a few lessons from the cleanup effort:

  1. Men run to the battle. Young me, run to the battle. When a tree falls, a man finds a way to help. When a child is afraid, a man comforts her. When an elderly woman is trapped in a house with a gas leak, a man gets her out.
  2. Men come ready to work. Young men, disaster cleanup is not the time for your gadgets and tomfoolery. Men bring their tools, their gloves, their goggles, and jump in. Which reminds me . . .
  3. Men take initiative. We don’t need to stand around asking what to do. We go find work to be done and do it. That’s why we’re there.
  4. Men are ready to lead. Sooner or later, every man will be called on to lead – a class, a group, his wife, his family, his business, his church. Young men, learn to think clearly and speak decisively now.
  5. Men know that we need women. This is all not to forget that not a few women made key contributions yesterday, from caring for us with food to offering an extra set of able hands to reminding us when and where to be careful. Young men, don’t forget the value of a good woman.
  6. Men look forward to growing up. That’s the difference between a boy and a young man. A young man, in one way or another, longs to move past his childhood and become a grown man.

[Photo: Nicole Wilson]

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About B Treece
loved by God before I ever loved Him, saved by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone by the authority of the Bible alone to the glory of God alone, made to enjoy Him forever, happily married with wonder-filled children.

One Response to Lessons on Manhood from the NC Tornadoes

  1. Pingback: New Series! « Your Cross on My Back

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