I want to raise up, more than anything else, men of faith. In Genesis 1, God mandates husbands and wives to be fruitful and multiply (Gen 1:28). In Malachi 3:15, we find that God desires “godly offspring” from the marriage union. This means that God does not merely want more warm bodies, but disciples. He wants image bearers to make more image bearers. In Christ, we, “put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness” (Eph 4:24). So my ultimate trajectory is to see these boys become men of faith. Men who are unreservedly His. Men who use their strength, their intellect, their whole lives to bring glory to the One true God.
I can’t believe that we have four boys,” I said to my wife. She looked at me and corrected, “Lord willing, four men, Jake.” Woah. Four men. I’m training up men. That humbles me and makes me pray. What hallmarks do I want to see in these men? What characteristics do I want to shine out from them? God help me as I train up these men in the way they should go.
Men of Meekness
I want to raise men of meekness. Men of humility. A meek man does not think more highly of himself than he ought, but rather, he counts, “others more significant than [himself]” (Phil 2:3). The man of meekness does not seek to be served, but to serve, just like our Lord (Matt 20:28). The man of meekness is strong and capable, but knows how to restrain and direct that strength for others. A man of meekness is wise and willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits (James 3:13-17). I want these men to be marked by meekness.
Men of Zeal
I want these boys to become men of zeal. I want their meekness to fuel a righteous zeal that is unafraid to stand apart from the world. I want men who are like our Lord, who says “Zeal for your house will consume me” (John 2:17), and who wears, “zeal as a cloak” (Isa 59:17). And not zeal without knowledge, but a zeal that is confident in and assured of the Word of God.