A Blueprint for Manhood, A Kilt for Ligon Duncan
In other less kilt-focused matters, I want to conclude my comments on responsible manhood with a few words. I do not want to be misunderstood as saying that only traditional professions are worthwhile. I love the arts, and I have said numerous times that we need Christians who make excellent art for a living. It is no bad thing for a very talented musician, filmmaker, or web designer to ply their trade to the best of their ability. Furthermore, those who enjoy such endeavors (and many others that are unnamed) but who are not considerably gifted in them should not devote an inordinate amount of attention to them. It is my humble opinion that men considering what they should do for a living should consider not simply what makes them happy, what they like, but what will enable them to provide well for their families. There may be nothing wrong with a certain profession, but will it allow a man to provide on a consistent basis for his family? In addition, I would urge men to consider how their profession contributes to society. This need not be the predominant factor in determining vocation, but it should be a consideration nonetheless. To use my previous analogy, I question the value of producing Lego remakes of Star Wars for a living. Perhaps that's a subjective judgment, but I want any children the Lord gives me to make a meaningful contribution to society. There is of course no hard and fast way to determine what is and is not meaningful, but this is where discernment, counsel and fellowship in the local church will make a big difference.
To concretize this, I could pursue a career in Christian rap. Don't laugh--I'm not joking. I have been told that I have sufficient ability to make a go in this profession. Being a Christian rapper sounds fun at times, but as I think about the future, as I think about the best way to use the particular gifts the Lord has given me, I can see that there are other fields which better allow me to use my gifts and position me to contribute to society in a more meaningful and lasting way than Christian rap. This realization does not invalidate Christian rap, and it does not mean that I can't pursue making Christian rap as a hobby. It does mean that instead of long tours, a turbulent life, infrequent paychecks, and a need for a career change once my "coolness" and relevance wears off, I will be able to provide for my family on a stable basis and hopefully make a more widely recognized contribution to some field. Anyway, that's just one personal example of how I play out this principle. Hope that helps you, and your own decision as to whether to pursue Christian rap or not--I know many of you out there suffer from this decision.
With my tongue firmly in cheek, I wish you a blessed weekend.