Hurricanes are devastating events. It is hard to comprehend the suffering the people endure -particularly in the aftermath of a Category 4 or 5 storm. With tears in my eyes, I have observed brave people from all walks of life rescue thousands of people from dangerous flood waters. In most of those cases, men have risked their lives on behalf of others. Yes, there have been brave women as well, but the majority have been men. Following Hurricane Harvey in 2017, one of my favorite groups was ” the Cajun Navy.” As one man said so matter-of-factly, “I’m gonna try to save some lives.” I was deeply moved to hear the heartfelt gratitude of whole families rescued from rising floodwaters.
It takes a humanitarian crisis for a tone-deaf culture to realize how distorted the false narrative of extreme feminists has become. It has gained prominence partly through the dominant media spreading the warped idea of toxic masculinity. One woman tweeted in response to a 2017 photo-gone-viral of SWAT officer Daryl Hudeck rescuing a mother and her infant child: “It’s not that women aren’t brave. They are. But this is just what men do. Great, gloriously toxic men. Love them to death.”
What we have witnessed in so many of those dramatic pictures is the true chivalric nature of masculinity. These were ordinary men acting upon their innate sense of responsibility to be protectors. They courageously responded in the face of real danger, helping to dispel the “toxic masculine” narrative. “Seemingly overnight,” wrote Mark Tapson, “our culture has unquestion-ably embraced the term “toxic masculinity. Male nature itself is the problem, we are told, and the solution is the deconstruction of our understanding of what it means to be a man.” But the photos and news reports coming out of the devastation wrought by hurricane after hurricane and natural disaster after natural disaster are putting to rest this skewed idea.
Men, when you feel intimidated by the persuasive voices of radical feminism, along with men who accept their narrative, remember the brave “toxic” men mounting heroic rescue efforts. Rise up with inner strength and courage – and allow your protective “juices” to flow. Do what honorable men have always done. Take responsibility for the care of your family and work for the good of those who are less fortunate in your community and in the world. Live out of your God-given masculine soul.
Remember Peter’s words: “In the same way, you husbands must give honor to your wives. Treat your wife with understanding as you live together. She may be weaker than you are, but she is your equal partner in God’s gift of new life. Treat her as you should so our prayers will not be hindered” (I Peter 3:7 NLT). A footnote in the NLT Study Bible states: “Peter was probably thinking of the woman’s physical strength and perhaps her social status. Since women are typically physically weaker than men and were often less able to assert themselves in that society, husbands had the duty of protecting and caring for his wife.”
My bride is an equal partner, but she does not have the same physical strength I have. Even so, she is strong spiritually, continuing to spiritually challenge me with her consistent walk with the Lord. God has called me to be her protector, both physically and spiritually. I take seriously the warning of our prayers being hindered if I am not taking responsibility to protect her. Men, stand up in the strength of the Lord and fight for your family, for others, and for the Kingdom of God.