I don't know about you but I want to be a better human being. I don't say that in an insecure way. There is a perfection that comes with being a believer and it is a present tense perfection. Believing God is the best activity that anyone can be involved in and God has perfected the believer because He sees time backwards as well as forwards and makes blanket declarations based on His infinite knowledge.
"And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified. What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?" - Romans 8:28-31 ESV
Who can be against us includes 'ourselves.' There is no striving for perfection. Loving God is perfection. I'm talking about growth.
For me growth as a man involves headship.
"And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes. Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love." - Ephesians 4:11-16 ESV
"For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior." - Ephesians 5:23 ESV
Boys learn to be men by watched men function as men then that manhood is put into practice by how he treats the women in his life. Jesus is the ultimate example of true headship.
"Now this I say and testify in the Lord, that you must no longer walk as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their minds. They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, due to their hardness of heart. They have become callous and have given themselves up to sensuality, greedy to practice every kind of impurity. But that is not the way you learned Christ! - assuming that you have heard about him and were taught in him, as the truth is in Jesus, to put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness. Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another." - Ephesians 4:17-25 ESV
Unbelief has a hardness to it. The nations (Gentiles) function in a kind of national unbelief. That is the zeitgeist of our age and it has been since nations formed on the Earth. God has not given man a national redemption yet. He will. The lamb will return as a lion and we will see that. We see shadows of that in Solomon but Solomon failed like every man before him. Jesus will not fail.
God is not surprised that nations don't believe. He points to them and uses them as a visual aid for us to see in our generation. We humble ourselves because we don't want to think like a government that can commit atrocities... like the ones we see around us.
As a man I don't want to be a little dictator in my home. Nor do I want to be a passive pleasure seeker. If I choose to function in spirituality then I choose to function in servant headship and that headship initiates without micro-management. That is a leadership that lays down it's life. Jesus is giving grace and making intercession right now as he sits on a throne in Heaven. He Is resting in His love toward us. He providing headship from that location.
I ask almost every day for God to make me a better husband and because I am married it is linked to my spiritual manhood. Asking for that is indirectly asking God to make me a better man.
This is not a popular message in this day and age.
We are being counseled to take gender our of the equation. The very definitions of male and female are currently being challenged but gender was not given to make one gender better than another. Gender was given to complete us as we experience unity. It was given for growth.
We are also counseled to drop titles and drop spiritual submission. Leaders are treated like servants when they should be seen as mentors. It is smart tactic really because if you neuter leadership you water down the manhood of the generation that follows.
I'll be a 'better' human being today if I function in real submission and then initiate from that vantage point. It won't perfect me. I have already been perfected. Functioning in grace will give me a life of spiritual multiplication and that is the growth I am seeking.
"Listen! Behold, a sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seed fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured it. Other seed fell on rocky ground, where it did not have much soil, and immediately it sprang up, since it had no depth of soil. And when the sun rose, it was scorched, and since it had no root, it withered away. Other seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it, and it yielded no grain. And other seeds fell into good soil and produced grain, growing up and increasing and yielding thirtyfold and sixtyfold and a hundredfold." And he said, 'He who has ears to hear, let him hear.' " - Mark 4:3-9 ESV
God give us ears to hear this weekend. Sow your seed in our hearts and make us faithful sowers of seed also.