What should’ve been a simple grocery trip for my wife and the kids turned out to be a nightmarish ordeal. People have been frantic over COVID-19 virus and decided that stockpiling their homes was the appropriate response.

The result of that was an almost empty grocery store and my wife hauling two kids needing to wait an hour for the checkout line. Frantically she called me overwhelmed by crying kids and the chaos.

I took the call from my work desk where I was stuck.

I felt helpless. And I felt powerless.

There’s something really challenging about this time. And there’s something even more challenging being a man in this time.

I feel a need to be strong. To be strong for my family so that they know everything is going to be okay. But the truth is, the tumult and shiftiness of this time is causing my own heart to feel at unease.

It is the unease of seeing my own world being shaken and realizing that it will probably never be the same.

How can I be expected to lead out of that?

It is until one morning when I was spending time with Jesus admitting my own fears, insecurities, and feebleness to him where he spoke to me:

In a time of tumult, to be a man, is to be a son

Even though I want to be strong for people around me I realize the pathway to being a man is simply being a son before God. To express my fears, my needs, and my frailties before him and to let him speak tenderly to me in the secret place.

I have to reject the American narrative of being man, which is just to gird my teeth and do it in my own strength. Rather, I am the man that I need me to be and that my family needs me to be when I am tender and broken before God.

To be a man is to be a son

If you are a man trying to lead in this difficult time, remember that before you are a man, you are a son. And if you are a women with men in your life that need strength, pray that they would find it not in themselves, but in their Heavenly Father.

Some trust in horses,
some trust in chariots
But we trust in the name of the Lord
Psalm 21

Thank you father that you call me a son. Thank you that you give me strength by speaking to me in the secret place. Thank you that I don’t need to pretend that I’m strong because I’m not. I’m weak and I’m broken and it’s okay. With you I am strong. And with the strength you give me, I will lead those around me.