I have recently been reading John Eldredge’s revised and expanded edition of “Wild at Heart.” His book and the work of Richard Rohr has been the inspiration for this blog site. These two men have also been an encouragement for me in hosting “wildman” Saturdays here at Canaan’s Rest. I remember how I was impacted by the first addition of “wild at heart.” As I have been making my way through the new edition, I have been impressed anew with the vital need for myself to be willing to go into my heart and find my strength. Staying on the surface and pretending really robs me of my unique masculine strength
As I have reflected on my reading, I have once again be challenged to ask the question, “Do I have what it takes ?” “Do I really believe that I can come through?” I have especially been asking this in relationship to my wife. “Am I truly willing to come out of hiding and fully engage my wife, rather than hide in anger, insecurity and confusion?” Eldredge makes this statement. “This is every man’s deepest fear: to be exposed, to be found out, to be discovered as an imposter, and not really a man.” When most of us men look into our hearts, we find fear, anger, shame and guilt. We flee from our souls, embracing what is familiar, while staying in control, trying to understand with our minds. But there come a time when a man must face what is inside. This certainly is true in relationship to the feminine, that is, the woman who is closest to us in daily life. For most of us this is our wife.
To become aware of the life of our soul, is not be become preoccupied in a kind of introspective fog. No, it means we become honest about our pain. To go into our heart (soul) is to face our wounds Every man at sometime in his life will have the face his inner wounds. The wounds that took him out, robbed him of his strength, and caused him to flee. When confronted with this pain we feel like frightened boys, with no inner strength to come out and be a man. Our strength will be found in entering with Jesus into our wound, being honest about our pain, and finding our healing in Jesus. Men, understand me when I say the light of Jesus is brighter and stronger than any darkness you have within. But we have to invite Jesus into the darkness.
Am I am wiling to enter the darkness of my wound and shame, to find the strength to be the man that God has uniquely made me to be? The expression of my masculine soul will be who I have been created to be from the foundations of the world. I meet Jesus in my wound, the wound that would rob me of my true masculine soul. It is there in the inner place that I find my strength, strength given to me by Jesus. I can then come forth in my natural, true, masculine self. For it is through my wounds that I find my strength. Remember Jesus’ words to Paul, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” So Paul could say, “Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me” ( II Cor 12:9-10). Men, Jesus will give strength to come forth, if you are willing to face your wound.