David Petraeus and Tiger Woods were two of the most revered and respected apex predators in the masculine pecking order. Both breathed the rare air of cult status in the most coveted zones of male glory: battle and sport. They were disciplined warriors who possessed the spoils of manhood while simultaneously achieving “role model” status bequeathed to those who are professionally transcendent. Both were also known best for wearing the color green. The four-star general who hunted America’s enemies in Afghanistan suited up in green fatigues and the four-time Masters Champion dawned the iconic green jacket at Augusta National sealing his own mythic status. Their icon status and aura created a perception that they were also morally sound, emotionally mature and relationally committed to their families. Men and women, young and old, presidents and endorsers alike swallowed these two personas until one day both men lost their cultural “anointing” thanks to spicy and public revelations of sexual indiscretions. Their falls from grace were painful sucker punches to their admirers and to a nation that covets its’ national treasures.
The news outlets acted like a pack of wild hyenas with a fresh kill, eating the flesh off the story as fast as possible without much energy or thought going toward the very real moral and emotional conflicts resonating within these sad events. Predictably, journalists set to work dissecting the events, profiling the mistresses, and providing plate after plate of consumable journalistic gossip. This dance of detailing the logistics of immorality while never commenting on the actual moral angles of the story is the oxymoronic state of our news community. So what we got with the Woods and Petraeus affairs were the juicy details and “twinky” analysis bereft of any useable intellectual nutrition or meaningful insight from very painful stories about men. God forbid we hold up a mirror and actually learn from the mistakes we make as men so that we can identify the landmines and affirm the healthier patterns actually practiced by good men.
Suggestion: why don’t we stop shaking our heads at men and start exploring the powerful dynamics in these stories that are common to all men? Why not talk about the very real psychological, moral, and spiritual dynamics at the root of these lapses versus just “tabloiding” the symptoms for advertising bucks and social media buzz?
Okay, why not.
TEENS HIDING THEIR SEXUAL REALITY FROM PARENTS
By Kenny Luck
Sexual revelations about their children shake most parents to the core.
Let’s face it – “our little Katie” getting naked with a boy or “our little Kevin” guzzling porn on his smart phone and chronically masturbating is an exercise that – again – most parents can’t mentally engage or never want to imagine. However, to personally witness the shock, awe, shame, and personal disappointment in themselves as they deal with a teenage sexual revelation after the fact is even more painful. Their face says it all:
- What happened?
- How did we miss this?
- Why didn’t they come to me?
- Have I failed to pass on my values?
- Am I such a bad parent?
These are the questions parents around the country are asking themselves in the wake of deeply held moral and spiritual expectations colliding with what are, for parents, unexpected sexual revelations about their children.
- Thu Jul 23, 2015
- 1 comments
Our world has fallen head-over-heals in love with love – an idealized version of it that swallows massive amounts of our mental, emotional, social, and financial resources. “We all” pursue it. Chick flicks, romance novels, music and newsstand magazines all depict it. Advertisers appeal to it. Some brokenhearted people avoid it. And we download the sentiment of it with 90% of music selections.
And yet, God designed it. Love is a matter of the heart, and biblically, the heart is the center of our emotions and will. Oh, and by the way, since God has designed it…. The enemy is after it.
Our hearts are under fire by a culture that romanticizes, fantasizes, and strives to realize love its’ own way apart from God. It’s a brilliant tactic by “pseudo-love’s” main sponsor – Satan. Think about it. The more distracted we can become by it, the less we can connect with the true purpose for it.
When Jesus was asked to rank the most important commandment in Mark 12, I imagine if He had a microphone He would have turned up the volume and shouted:
- “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.” --Mark 12:29-31
- Sat Mar 22, 2014
- 1 comments
“I know better.”
It’s a simple message backed up by simple behaviors and a better knowledge of life or pursuit. In many contexts you wouldn’t think twice about it. A mom says it to a naïve child mesmerized by red hot fire. Tiger Woods addresses you on how to get lift from a golf ball in a sand trap. B.B. King shows you a trick to get the guitar sound you want. Bill Gates says, “I have new technology idea.” The normal response in the face of greater knowledge and insight is to listen, learn, and apply. Their knowledge transcends your own and only a fool would deign to say, “Thanks but no thanks. I got this one.” In fact, that would be downright rude, smack of narcissism, and showcase how arrogance begets stupidity. This is the most basic message of wisdom: never “back-seat drive” someone who clearly knows more than you and wants to help you.
Golf. Guitar. Gates. God?
- Mon Jun 24, 2013
- 6 comments
“What will they think of me?”
I must have asked myself this question subconsciously a million times—in seventh grade. Heck, I even fretted over how to articulate saying “here” during roll call my first day of school at Miller Junior High. Twelve and self-conscious is expected. My daily social fears clearly indicated one thing: I wasn’t secure personally, emotionally, or morally. I had not solved the identity and acceptance issues yet. “Growing up” would mean landing on a way to be, believe, and behave that helped me land the Holy Grail of adolescence: acceptance. The hunt was afoot and the chase was on to avoid rejection and secure “popular.” Observe the right words. Observe the right clothes. Observe the right social connections. Observe the prevalent morality. Then fit in. Acceptance had a cost but the prize was worth the price. Innocently, I started off feeling the promise of popular but then came the pain. Pain not just for me but, by default, for those who didn’t fit into my new worldview. They got a label, were rejected, and sentenced to isolation. The broken quest for approval and popularity through the teen years put me in harms way more times than I want to remember, hurt others, and pressed me into moral choices I would rather forget. “Fitting in” and trusting youth culture to “show me the way” personally or morally should have never been a goal. I became less of a man and less mature because a life formed around pop-culture or popularity is always synonymous with a weak and destructive morality one hundred percent of the time.
The Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) was officially and publicly pimped today. The pimper? Popular and energetically propagated moral
WE ARE GETTING PIMPED