3 Apr

truth seeing


Imagine the most manly man you know or have heard about. This is the man you would have loved the men in your life to emulate. For most of us, this man is of an older generation. In traditional times, the man would grow up in a community where there were other men of all ages. They were even grouped into age sets which I could compare to a mentor or discipleship group. The men would walk together as they grew and would encourage each other and correct each other. Of course there’s the flip side where they would have a large platform to influence each other negatively. At the age of thirteen, they would go through a rites of passage where it was clear that they were now not children and there were clearly laid out expectations of what made a man, a man. Some communities send off the men into the forests to be warriors at these early ages. It was very clear what a man’s role was in a community.

Fast forward to present day, the community life is almost non-existent. This means that families do not even know who their neighbors are, not to mention their extended families. Most homes are women led and the fathers are nowhere to be found. The rites of passages are somewhat diluted in their impact in these young men. I can use my brother as an example though he is still a teenager and really not the worst of them. He had and still does have a present dad all his life but he still has a lot of growing up to do in this quest to become a man. I can only imagine how it is for men who did not have father figures growing up. Although I think a father is essential in the life of a man, I think other factors like mentor-ship and accountability play a big role. I know of a lady who married a man who had grown up in a home with a single mother. He grew up seeing the mother lead in everything. When he got his own home, it was not automatic for him to now realize that he needed to take the reins and lead. He had grown up seeing a woman lead the home and he did not know better.

So is it fair for us women to have a list with ten qualities of a man that we expect to be there without fail considering the plight of the modern man? Is it fair for the mentors and disciplers of this generation to have a rigid list of expectations and teach this to the modern woman? This is not an excuse for women to choose blindly or settle for what we consider ‘losers’I just wonder whether we may be living in a bubble considering the current situations. Shouldn’t we extend grace to these young men who are our potential future husbands. Thank God for experiences like MAN ENOUGH and BOYZ TO MEN by Transform Kenya that is trying to correct this state and train men to avoid the ripple effect of fatherless homes.

I do have a list for the man I want to spend my life with and one of the most important qualities is leadership. I have learnt that there is a difference between leading at work and leading in a relationship. I however think that this is a quality that can be learnt in time and that a man can be guided through it. There are definitely qualities especially to do with integrity that are non-negotiables but at least two out of the four things on my list are teachable. Wouldn’t I rather be looking out for the quality of teachability?

I am no expert but I am really against rigidity in the issues of relationships. I really think we should follow the leading of our shepherd and drown out the other voices. Can we let God guide as in choosing our mates? Could we ask Him to give us a ‘list’ and the standards we could use instead of copy-and-pasting?

John 10:3-5

“……the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice. But they will never follow a stranger; in fact, they will run away from him because they do not recognize a stranger’s voice.”



  1. rockhead April 4, 2013 at 8:20 am #

    Interesting…let’s discuss 😀

    • lilburdy April 20, 2013 at 9:12 am #

      Yet we never did. Thanks for reading.

  2. thekenyaninme April 4, 2013 at 10:45 am #

    I like this post. I think it is very true. Recently i was in a discussion with a lady who has been married for many years and she kept saying that it does not matter if the guy is a drunkard etc as long as he is a teachable man. I kept blocking her comments coz for me it is important the guy is sold out for God. But i think what she was trying to tell me was that it is not possible to be sold out for God but not have a techable spirit.

    I think the men in our generation have really gotten the beating. Even where the fathers were there, more often than not it was still the mother’s that led the families. So to expect that the guy will then know how to lead automatically maybe is hard.

    So no I still want to be led from day 1, my starry eyed self does not want less, but maybe you are right, i need to give some grace to the modern man, afterall i also am such a work in progress!

    • lilburdy April 20, 2013 at 9:11 am #

      Thanks for reading and the feedback. I also have starry eyes in a number of things. I guess I will learn on the journey

  3. The Vilage pastor April 9, 2013 at 3:31 am #

    i like the post and would to share in response, i am a creative so i will choose to title my response;

    I believe the Modern man is like a premature baby in an incubator, his chances of growth and maturity are equal to him staying a baby forever .He is a by product of constant emasculation by the girl child movement, the African-Westernization influence and absent or passive male role models. On the other hand the Modern woman is a masculated,empowered ,selfsufficient mate brought up in the era of women empowerment and decline of male leadership and responsibility . Both of them are caught up in roles opposite to each other. If the woman comes up with her list of ideal mate , she gets shocked when her list of mates perfectly fits the same sex(fellow women) than it fits the opposite sex(Man).

    I grew up with no father,raised by a single mother , heavily influenced by western culture and media ,during the era of Moi girls secondary schools emergence- to empower the girl child. I became a by product of emasculation and Identity crisis. This is my story and the stories of many of my age mates. So when i turned 21 and all messed up ,whom did i blame? of course the list narrowed down to the absent men who were around as i grew up,the women who suppressed me when i tried to lead and ,everyone who never gave me a chance to make a difference.

    I believe this problem is Man generated and Woman propelled. The mentors failed to pass on wisdom to the young men and the women became the victims of this circumstance- they empowered the young women to hold the families together in attempt to salvage the situation, while the men wandered in search of their identitiy and masculinity. Now i must confess i am not against women empowerment, infact i support it as this is what held families ,communities and the society together. However the man’s role is key and vital to solving this whole mess. When men lead their homes, their businesses and the people around them, then is no confusion concerning where society needs to go or who our daughters should marry.

    So in light of these causes and effects, i believe there is still hope for the modern man . I can count numerous men who have survived the ordeal of emasculation, identitiy crisis, and made it to be respectable leaders, husbands ,brothers and fathers. I can also count numerous women who have survived the ordeal being masculated and made it to lead in corporate circles, but submit in the family setup to their husbands letting them lead in succseful families. This may have taken lots of lessons, effort, patience, and time but the impact is a life time . Remember no one is perfect ,but we are all WORKS IN PROGRESS. The man has a task to see his need to lead, and learn from mentors how to lead. The greatest Mentors of all is God who is always ready to lead the way for men.

    Now I am 29 years of age ,It has taken me 8 years of unlearning traits and learning lessons of responsibility , putting effort to be a leader at work ,in my business and at home,patience of mentors to guide me and time spent in searching for a true leader and Identity in Jesus Christ. It hasnt been a great smooth journey,but God’s grace has abound to me in different times. I will extend the same grace to a young man in my situation 8 yrs ago as long as he is willing and teachable.

    So when the questions arise “should we extend grace to the modern man? Is it ok for the lady to have her long populated list of ideal mate?” I believe the answer is in two part.

    Part One is to accept the bubble has burst. There is no Mr perfect or prince charming nonsense from hollywood. So i would call for us to be gracious, patient but wise in choice towards the modern man- if he has potential ,teachablity and attributes that are non-negotiable like Character and Integrity which are universal irrespective of ones race, religion or tribe.

    Part Two is for those who believe in Christ ,God the creator already has a template , ideal list or desire of ideal partners seen through his word in;
    Solomon- one of the wisest men who lived.In his meditations of a Noble wife in Proverbs 31 , he talks of the kind of woman who pleases God and man.
    David – one of the most successful Israelite leaders and Musicians . In his music in Psalms 15, he talks about the kind of Man who pleases God and man.

    In conclusion, let the ladies be graceful to the modern man but wise in choice ,they dont need to carry lists.God already has given the qualities of an ideal man -with in mind the non-negotiable attributes. Men need to learn to lead as this is the beginning of order and solution for this mess.

    In all these discourse my advice for the modern lady is one of my favourite, a quote from Maya Angelou who once said “A woman’s heart should be so hidden in Christ that a man has to seek Him first to find her.”

    • lilburdy April 20, 2013 at 10:44 am #

      Thanks for this very detailed feedback. Interesting perspective

    • rockhead May 4, 2013 at 9:50 am #

      I love this analysis. It’s so on point. Thanks so much for sharing this, also I didn’t know there was an Ideal Man chapter in the Bible, I’m going to check out Psalm 15. God bless

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