As the story of Simba vividly illustrates, sometimes even those of us who think we know who we are (or who have been told who we are our whole lives by our culture, our family of origin, or God Himself ) wander and need reminding. This is a prodigal journey, and it takes many forms—some you would never expect. Maybe college knocked you off the path your identity calls you to. Or perhaps you mistakenly felt you had to be your own man and make your own way, and the faith of your family didn’t allow for that, so you caved.
Many men have chosen a Christ-free identity because they were attacked by their own—injured by some well-meaning but insecure Christians who made them feel as though they weren’t Christian enough.
For others, innocent wandering turned into a sprint away from your truest identity and toward the world—you knew being a “Jesus guy” meant not winning the approval of others, which, at the time, meant more to you than God’s approval.
Regardless of form, prodigal journeys always start with high hopes for the better. But the idealized version of life outside of Christ eventually bursts like a bubble, leading to prodigal pain.
It’s a bittersweet moment. The bitter is all the negative emotions that come with pain. The sweet is that with the “bubble” gone, you can return home to Jesus, who is eagerly waiting for you.
If you are reading this and thinking, That’s not me and it never was, don’t get too smug. Many modern-day Simbas haven’t run, but they are most definitely playing it safe in the comfortable ranks of the pride. These are sons of the King— they grew up in the faith. Maybe they were dedicated to God as babies. They attended church and went to Christian camp every summer. They have multiple Bibles and smokin’ playlists on their phones right now that exalt Jesus. They may even sport a spiritually inspired tattoo, maybe a Greek word that communicates Jesus, love, grace, forgiven, the cross, or commitment. These sons may be young marrieds with kids, good guys, providers. They take their families to church most Sundays, would never cheat on their women, and have a better relationship with their kids than their dad had with them. If you asked them if they love Jesus, their answer would be an unequivocal “Yes, I do” or “I am a Christ follower.”
Are they affiliated to Jesus? Yes. Are they activated for Jesus? No.
Are they good guys? Yes. Are they dangerous good? No.
Do they resist evil? Yes. Do they pose a threat to evil? Not even on the devil’s radar.
Unchallenged, they remain holy bubble boys, and “It’s all good, bro.” It doesn’t require real faith to keep up the bubbleboy lifestyle, and whatever that lifestyle is, it is not holy. It is, rather, safe. But God is intentionally bursting their bubbles.
Your bubble might just have popped right now.
God’s holding for you on Line 1.
Excerpt from Dangerous Good by Kenny Luck
It’s time to wake the sleeping giant in our world, in our communities, in our churches, and in our homes.
There’s a revolution brewing, a sleeping giant coming out of a long slumber. For years men have been sitting to the side, minding their own business, nursing their own wounds. But that time is reaching its end. Our wounds must surely be tended to, and our business must surely be minded. We are meant for greater things than these, and the world can no longer indulge our slumber. Justice demands a response to these troubling times. Righteousness demands a champion to counter a climate of moral relativism. God made us men; it’s time to act like it.
Good men are in high demand but low supply. That reality is creating suffering and injustice at every level of society in every community worldwide. Dangerous Good calls on the millennial generation of men who follow Jesus worldwide to confront that by deciding, individually and as a group, to be dangerous with goodness like Jesus. Here is the next revolution of masculinity the world is waiting for.