"The tragedy of life is what dies inside a man while he lives."Albert Schweitzer
The author John Eldredge says that the question that haunts every man is; "Do I have what it takes?" We want to know with a deep knowing that when required, we could come through. I have seen the question asked in the eyes of the heart of virtually every man I have ever known. There may not be anything as rare and unnerving as a man who knows precisely who he is...who needs nothing from you. Someone who deeply knows his validation walks in a rare class of beast.
My wife and I snuck away to Colorado a few months ago. While we were gone, our 11-year old had his second scrimmage with his team. Football has been an incredible journey into masculine validation and rising strength in our little guy. When we asked him about his scrimmage he said, "My coach cusses. After the game, he whispered to me that I was f*ing amazing, but he didn't say f*ing, he used the real word." And then he smiled real big.
I've told that story to several men I know. The reaction has been two-fold:
- How dare the coach use that kind of language! (As a recovering legalist, I am very familiar with that kind of response.)
- That's awesome!
Having the right person tell you at the right time, that you are f*ing amazing, could change your life. What man alive wouldn't want to be told that he is f*ing amazing? Several scenes come to my mind even as I am writing this. There are a few times where I heard essentially the opposite. While no ever told me that I was an f*ing failure, that was the message I received at several crucial times in my life. Hearing the inverse of that sentiment, might have broken loose a whole wave of new conclusions in my life.
Our little guy's grin told me that he knew the language wasn't okay, but that the message found its' purchase...it hit squarely on the mark.
I believe we will have an accounting for our life one day. We will give an account for all we did, said, and offered. I am betting there will be more concern about whether or not we knew we were amazing and how it allowed us to proclaim an amazing God through our life...and less concern about how many f-bombs we dropped.
Okay, so I don't typically approve of that kind of language, but you know what?...that kid is f*ing amazing and I am so thankful that someone besides his dad thinks so and is speaking deep affirmation into him.