“the warrior function is… unmistakable in Scripture… Within the epistles, the mature believing man is often described in militant terms – a warrior equipped to battle mighty enemies and shatter satanic strongholds.
The heart of a Warrior is a protective heart. The Warrior shields, defends, stands between, and guards… He invests himself in ‘the energy of self-disciplined, aggressive action.’ By Warrior I do not mean one who loves war or draws sadistic pleasure from fighting or bloodshed. There is a difference between a warrior and a brute. A warrior is a protector… Men stand taller when they are protecting and defending.” (Tender Warrior, by Stu Weber, as quoted in Fearless, by Eric Blehm)
recently, a friend and i were discussing life thoughts, and she asked me a question that sent me seeking answers for myself. “how does your view of God line up with the idea of war? of killing people?” it was a good question, and one that isn’t new. really, in all in life, how do we justify the actions that make up our world: a world where killing babies is applauded as motherly instinct is undermined, a world where billions of dollars protect wildlife but children starve and freeze; in short, a world that is broken.
i have a son who has reflected the above quote from my youngest memories of him as an articulate little boy. once when his younger brother was allowed to briefly play outside while he was in his room, a discipline for some wayward action or another, he shouted in near panic, “do you have any idea what it’s like to be the only one in this family who’s concerned for everyone’s safety?!” and this belief is deeply rooted in my man-boy… he has been gifted with a passion for protecting those in his life. and while at times, he is broody and seemingly self-centered, i often remember that this is a burden he believes he carries daily.
recently, after praying for more insight into my son, i remembered a book i’d been given by the publisher for review. sadly, more for that purpose than realizing it was the answer to my prayer, i opened Fearless, by Eric Blehm, and i couldn’t put it down. the story of Adam Brown, a SEAL team operator, is at once poignant and awe-inspiring. while i focus my “protective instincts” on praying for, and digging into/speaking wisdom over my family and those around me, this man devoted, literally, life and limb to the protection of the very freedoms we as americans flaunt and abuse. the back-story of his faith, his commitment to uphold biblical conviction, and the self-sacrificing commitment of especially his wife, but also his extended family, was at once humbling and a dare to be brave myself – to live “all out” for what i’m called to. and reading of the broken and tattered path of Adam’s youth also reminded me that each of us is imperfect, and desperately needs grace to get through our foolish choices and inadvertent addictions, but also that when we follow the One who created us, He promises to redeem each of those, either in the short-term or the long-term.
some time ago i wrote about the call i was sensing to live a life undaunted, and reading fearless drove me to remember the truths learned in my own journey.
reading the life story of this incredible man and the family who supported him, which was really an unashamed retelling of the faithfulness of the One who made him, Who chose him, and Who called him Home through self-sacrifice in the name of earthly freedom for others, helped me to identify more with the son who so quietly desires to protect that same freedom. this is a book i can highly recommend not just to mamas of sons, but to those young men who are learning to be real men in a world where they are increasingly rare.
are you raising boys? do you have the privilege of knowing a man who has the heart of a tender warrior? i’d love to hear your words of wisdom…