Wednesday, March 4, 2009

What is an unguy?

What exactly is an unguy? (Or should it be un-guy? I haven't decided for myself yet.) Perhaps I should ask my wife to provide a definition, since she was the one who first applied the term to me. I never rejected it, because it always seemed to describe my personality. But rather than offer a nice definition in this first posting, I want to explore the idea (among others) through this blog. By sharing some of my thoughts and experiences I hope to gain a better understanding of what it means to be an unguy, to live as a godly man in a 21st century world. One of my favorite authors is a German pastor, executed at Hitler's orders at the end of WWII, named Dietrich Bonhoeffer. In one of his letters written while he was in prison he pointed out to a friend:

"To be a Christian does not mean to be religious in a particular way, to make something of oneself (a sinner, a penitent, or a saint) on the basis of some method or other, but to be a man--not a type of man, but the man that Christ creates in us."

Rather than accept someone's prescription of what it means to be a man of God, I want to understand what Christ asks of me specifically as a man and as a person. The apostle Paul wrote "I want to know Christ." I echo that statement. But what does this mean practically? Recently I was reading in Matthew and came to the section where Jesus calls people to come to him and take his burden on themselves. What struck me was his description of himself: "I am gentle and humble in heart." Wow. These aren't words that we normally use to affirm a man. But if Jesus used them to speak of himself, then they certainly must be qualities I should desire to see develop in myself. I'm not there yet--in fact I'm a long way from being there. But one aspect of being an unguy for me is to affirm gentleness and humility as godly, masculine qualities.

So I invite you to explore with me. Not every post here will be focused on this theme. I want to share what comes to mind when the muses sway me to write. But a lot of my thinking is in this area these days, so it will certainly be a recurring question.

1 comment:

  1. This should be interesting! I look forward to reading as you discover Un-guy. And I just gotta tell you, that term SO describes my husband, Todd. He's not nearly as cranial as you, but he has a heart just like Jesus'. (it's ok that I said that about him, he wouldn't know what I meant by it! lol!)