What Real Manhood Is

I remember once being a subscriber to a few “men’s” magazine. After a while of reading that in conjunction with many of the messages the media wants to tell us, I have learned that we are in a crisis of knowing what real manhood is.

And so begins my preaching tirade:

Real manhood is not what you wear. It’s not what you own. It’s not how much “stuff” you can fill your life with. It’s not what kind of gadgets you own.  It’s not how much you have in the bank. It’s not who you know. It’s not what club you belong to. It’s not any achievements you think you’ve accomplished.

It’s not what brands you wear. It’s not how you wear your shirt, it’s not what kind of watch you wear, it’s not what kind of car you’re driving or how many houses you have. It is not how your body looks. It’s not how tight your abs are, it’s not how lean your back is, or how much your chest protrudes.

Real manhood is found within. Real manhood is your character. It is moral bravery in a world of cowards. It is fighting against injustice and fighting for the oppressed, the downtrodden, and the reviled. That is manhood.

Real manhood is not how many girls you can sleep with. It is not sporting around a girl by your side as a trophy, as an object, as a prize. It is not how many you’ve been with. It is not how much you can “satisfy” her. And it is certainly not the size of your privates.

Real manhood is the size of your heart. It is your humility. It is servanthood. It is the purity you offer to your wife one day. It is the moral boundaries you set up between your female friends and your significant other. It is honoring one woman for the one life you’re been given with one commitment demonstrated by one ring. That is manhood.

Real manhood is not something you can earn. It is not something you will hear from the TV, magazines, or the internet. It is not something you can get from anyone else. Neither the affirmations or the failures of your earthly father will impart true manliness.

Do you get it yet?

Contrary to what many are telling you, real manhood is never anything you can add to your life, be it possessions, fashions, or women. It is discovering the reality of who you really are amidst a world of lies.

In fact, real manhood is birthed from the perfect Man. And his name is Jesus. Jesus was the most perfect man who ever lived. He is the fiercest, strongest, yet most loving, most gentle, and most tender man who ever lived. And so the source of all that is true manliness roots from the voice of God speaking to you about who you really are. He made you, he fashioned you, all that he made awesome in a man, only he knows.

So, turn off the TV, put down the magazine, turn off your monitor, fix your gaze upon Him, and hear for yourself what he thinks about your life. And you find that the voice of your heavenly Father will begin birthing real manhood within you.

Posted by Phillip Chan

Phil has been writing in the Black Box for 10 years. His passion is to grow in his love for Jesus to obey his purposes in our generation.


  1. Dan Smith

    I have grown to like your writing over the few weeks I've been a subscriber, and I get the message you're proposing. However, if I may be so bold, let me suggest one thing. As a man, I don't want to fix my gaze upon Him. That sounds like something a woman might do to a guy she's in love with. As a man, I want to be told to do something manly. So, maybe say, "Look Jesus in the eye and see what he wants you to see."

    My hope isn't to cause trouble, so delete this comment if it does. However, like the media gives us improper messages, so does the church sometimes, as in saying things that aren't really in the context of what a man might do. We must fix this.

  2. Anna Ramos

    In reply to Dan Smith's comment on not wanting to fix his gaze on Jesus. Let me be so bold as to day that our God has commanded us to do just that. It is said that you become what you behold. What he wants us to see is himself. We the church are the bride of Christ. Within the context of worshipping The Holy Father, we are invited to gaze at him the way our eyes are captivated by a beautiful sunset, or the power of the Niagara Falls. We are more than invited, when we see Him truly, we can't look away, we are captured. The captivating beauty of a gorgeous woman is a mere type of the true awesomeness of the captivating beauty of God. All men gaze at beauty and awesomeness, and it doesn't diminish their manhood in any way.

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