Thursday, May 5, 2011

Raising Real Men, part 8

Have you been on pins and needles waiting for my next installment of blogging through this book?
:) My apologies...

Chapter 11, "Chivalry is not Dead"

No, it's not dead, but it (like many other things) has been tainted a little bit. Is it manly to hold a door for a woman...or is that making the woman feel/appear unable to do things for herself? Should a man step aside and allow a woman to enter an elevator first...or does that show that she is not his equal? Do you ever see men stand up when a woman walks in the room? Perhaps that looks very silly nowadays...for whatever reason! Does a man portray a feminine appearance by acting like a gentleman?

Balance is key!!

First (and always foremost), what does the Bible say about manners and how to treat others? Peter tells us in 1 Peter to be of one mind, compassionate, loving, tenderhearted, and courteous. Paul says in Romans to show brotherly affection, giving preference to one another.

The Young's discuss the idea that boys not only need to be taught manners and basic human respect, but they also need to be shown how to exhibit these qualities in a manly fashion. "How would Samson walk? How would he stand?" etc. (p. 178) According to what we know to be true in the Bible, God created men with the duty of providing for and caring for their families. Because of that, we also know that He created them with the physical abilities to do just that. The Young's make a point to tell their sons to use that God-given strength for serving others. Hold the door, lift things, help unload carts at the store, etc.

Another aspect of chivalry that seems to be fading in our culture is the sight of well-dressed men. I loved how the Young's talked about making sure their sons were comfortable in different (dressy, classy) situations...both in the way they were expected to dress and in the way they were expected to behave. Obviously, there are not many situations a young boy would need to be in those types of settings, but we are responsible for training our sons to go out into the world.

As always, the Young's throw in some humor...although maybe it's not humorous to people who don't have boys around the house. Their mentioning of boys "walking like young elephants" and talking very loudly (p. 181) made me laugh, because it sounds familiar even though my boys are only 5 and under!! Derek and I are constantly saying Justus is the loudest person ever when he busts in a room, slams down the toilet lid (at least he closes it, right?) or when he fights his "guys" or crashes his toy cars. The noise level can be downright amazing sometimes.

I'll close with this quote of the week (although I guess I can't accurately call it that if I haven't posted in a few weeks!!)

"It's important that they know their home is a place that appreciates their masculinity, but they also have to respect the needs of gentleness and some quietude...to act appropriately inside or out, at home or in public." (p. 181-182)



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