This is Stu Epperson from the Truth Talk Podcast, connecting current events, pop culture, and theology. And we're so grateful for you that you've chosen the Truth Podcast Network.
It's about to start in just a few seconds. Enjoy it, and please share it around with all your friends. Thanks for listening, and thanks for choosing the Truth Podcast Network. This is the Truth Network. Coming to you from an entrenched barricade, deep in the heart of central North Carolina, Masculine Journey After Hours, a time to go deeper and be more transparent on the topic covered on this week's broadcast. So, sit back and join us on this adventure. The Masculine Journey After Hours starts here, now. Welcome to Masculine Journey After Hours. We are glad to have you with us today, and we are continuing our series on the Masculine Journey. Not the name of the radio show, it's named after it, but the Masculine Journey, which is the different stages.
Right, Andy? From boyhood to death that men are supposed to go through. Yep, that's right. So, you want to tell us a little bit about the stage we're going through today? Sure.
We've been through boyhood. Right. Cowboy ranger.
Mm-hmm. Warrior. Yep. Lover. Yep.
And now we're into this stage. King. King. King for a day. King for a day, but king for a lot of years, according to that. Yeah, I'm just kidding. King, this stage runs from like your 30s to your 60s where you actually begin to have influence.
And through that time where you have an influence on whatever sphere that is, job, home, family, ministry, whatever it may be. Yeah. So, maybe you're sitting out there and you're like, well, I'm not a king of anything. Right. Yep. Yeah.
We talked about that earlier in the other show. You're definitely, we're all kings to a certain degree. And that's because you have a domain, a sphere of influence that you bring up strength and a power to. Or you can bring, if you're not a good king, you can bring poor attributes. It could be, you could be a harsh king. You could be a controlling king, which I'll raise my hand for that one at times. So, let me just give you an idea on what we see in kings at times.
But just kind of what the king brings or what you see in the stage is king is the point of the masculine journey, relies on learning from other stages, can be trusted with power and rules for his people. Right. Thank you. I always get hung up on the way this is written. Yeah.
It's written in a way that's not easy to read. So, now on how it's wounded, you're never given territory of your own. Territory that was given is violated.
Territory given is too big, is made a king too soon, has a domineering mother or father or through betrayal. Right. Yeah.
And you could take some of those and exchange some things out. Like let's say you're made an area manager, but the district manager above you is domineering. Yeah. Right. It's kind of the same kind of thing.
It's not necessarily mother and father, but it can be played out in the business world that way. Yeah. And so, we're going to go through in the after hours. This is where we're going to share some of our stories, play a couple more clips, and I'll go ahead and put my clip out there.
So, Rodney, I'm first in the after hours. But anyway, this is from the movie First Night. It has a lot of good actors and Richard Gere in it, but just my personal opinion.
What are you trying to say? Just my feeling in general of Richard Gere, but it has Sean Connery, and that makes up for a whole lot. You know? Jeremy Irons, I think, is the bad guy in it, and so that makes up, like I said, a good cast. But what you have here in the First Night is it's a King Arthur story, right? You have King Arthur in the round table. You have Prince Malagant, who has once been a knight that's kind of fallen away and wants to have a conversation with the knights of the round table and King Arthur, offering them a deal that he won't attack Camelot if they give him the areas outside Camelot.
And so that's where we pick up the story, and we're going to listen to how Sean Connery as King Arthur really does an amazing job of being a king here. Your hand on it. We'll all live together as friends. You offer me what isn't yours to give. You all know me. You know I'm a man of my word.
Don't make an enemy of me. I mean no harm to Camelot. You know the law we live by, and where is it written? Beyond Camelot live lesser people.
People too weak to protect themselves let them die. Other people live by other laws, Arthur. There is the law of Camelot to rule the entire world. There are laws that enslave men and laws that set them free. Either what we hold to be right and good and true is right and good and true for all mankind under God. Your fine words are talking you out of peace and into war. There's a peace that's only to be found on the other side of war. If that battle must come, I will fight it.
And I will die. So I'd offer up that that's probably the best minute and 15 second clip that we've ever had. I mean it's a strong one. Yeah, I know I picked it.
You guys could have picked it. But it's such an amazing clip in so many ways. And what you don't know is going on there, Guinevere, the wife of King Arthur, her family and people are from outside of Camelot, right? And so those are the ones that Prince Malagant was going to go attack and kill, right? And so he's fighting for the heart of his bride, of his beauty. He's fighting for the people. He's doing the right things for the right reasons, you know, and that's the kind of king that I want to be in all situations. You know, I think, you know, for me, there are times that I've been able to do that and times I've definitely not done well with it.
Yeah, I was talking off air a little bit ago. The same dad, it was the same physical person being me, but the same dad that raised my oldest, Rachel, is not the same dad that raised my youngest, Eli. You know, both were flawed, but the one that raised Eli was a lot less flawed than the one that raised Rachel. And you know, I think probably where I did the biggest disservice to my kids is they never knew what dad they were going to get, what king was coming home.
Was it the guy that's going to be in a good mood, jovial, playing around, having fun, or the guy that snaps at them the first time that something doesn't go the way I think it should, you know? And so their inconsistency as a king is a horrible thing, right? You're almost better to be an inconsistent or a consistent bad king. At least they know what to expect, you know, and there's no hope at that point and they can look for other kings, but to be a good king consistently is obviously the goal. And where you become a good king, it's not, yes, it's through effort, but it's leaning into God and it's getting the healing, it's getting the wounds and stuff that you have attended to and healed through those, right?
All the stuff we talk about at a boot camp, that's why we're so on about these boot camps, that's where it helps you become better kings, you know, in your life out there. I'll share one more quick thing and maybe more later, but in my career, when I look back at my career, I've had both good kings and bad kings that I worked for, you know, before I really kind of got my own area bigger than the sock drawers we joked about on the last show. Honestly, I learned more from the bad kings than I did from the good kings because the good kings just do it so effortlessly. You don't recognize it, it just kind of flows and it happens, but the bad kings, you see that it's missing and it does forge something in you that says, I don't want to be a king like that.
I may not know how to do it, but I know that's not the way to do it, right? So as you look back at the kings that's kind of been in your life and all that, like I'd kind of peel back and say, okay, but what did you really learn from them, right? And help you be a better king from both sides of that equation.
Yeah, and I'd say when you talk about the good and the bad kings, there are so few good kings that they just seem to stand out more. I struggle to say where did I learn more because I had so many bad examples that you could kind of go through and cite in your life and things that weren't where they maybe should have been because, again, a lot of it comes down to pride, arrogance, selfishness. It's about me and doing that kind of stuff, especially in the business world. Less in the family world that I've seen that, so it's been fortunate not to have to really go through that on a really bad scale in the family. But as far as in the business world, you just see bad king after bad king after bad king and just all about me and promoting me and where do I need to go instead of worrying about, well, let me build up those underneath me so that whether I'm here or I'm gone, everything runs well.
Yeah, it makes sense. I would say that although you see it more clearly when it's in the business world, the impact is more drastic in the private. When the private's bad, it's real bad. Yeah, I mean, it's a lifetime kind of thing. You see all these kids where they're good at sports and their love's stripped away because the dad's living through them, that type of thing, and just on and on and on and abusive fathers and verbally, physically, all those kinds of things. That's the wounds. That's the wounds. That's the wounds we're talking about healing is because of poor kings in the family.
Right, or unhealed men that weren't able to do it at that point. Yeah, and I'd say my dad just didn't have any emotional ties or didn't really purposely intentionally teach me things. I learned through osmosis just listening to him talk to others about stuff or him and my mom talk about topics. I picked up on, oh, this is what's right and wrong, but I wasn't really like, hey, Rodney sat down and talked, too. So that's where, if you go through the boyhood stage, most of the beginning, I'm a pretty good boyhood, but boy, when you get into the Cowboy Ranger, just that lack of leadership of, okay, I'm going to intentionally turn you from a boy into a man, that just has ramifications to this day in my life, I think.
It just continues to echo. The good news is, God's not done. God coming into my life has been such a godsend, exactly. It's completely changed my perspective in life and what I look for in life and what I try to get out of life and what I want to do for others instead of just myself, yeah. I think, as I talk with a lot of men, and I see this in my dad's life, after learning more about his dad, I think my dad did everything he could to be a lot better dad than his dad, and he did some things really well, but there's a world of difference between being better than the generation before me and being a good king, and I also don't want anyone out there to feel any shame in this.
This is not a shameful thing. You're a work in progress, and so God can come in and work on those areas and bring you to a place of being a better and a better and a better king until you are a good king in those areas. Which, that's what God's done for me, is showing me that, oh, don't dwell on the past, like Rafiki would say, you know, let's go forward, and I just don't feel like I'm dragging such a huge anchor anymore of all my past mistakes. Yeah. Well, you have a microphone in front of you and you have a clip.
Well, what do you want me to do, Sam? Well, before you do it, Rodney has a great clip. I really like this clip, but it was intentional using it last, because all the other ones we used today were stories. You know, King Arthur, yeah, I know he lived at some point, right, or whatever, but not in our lifetime, right, and all these things. And this is more of a man you would see today, right, and how he can be a good king. Yeah, and it was really hard for me to figure out how I wanted to approach this week's topic of being a king with a clip, because it really, being a king, encompasses every other stage to some extent, and you could either do it well or do it poorly.
And I struggled with, which I wanted to reflect, the good or the bad, and then I decided, okay, I want to find something with a good king, and then I'm like, well, what the heck is a good king, and I have all these options, and it's like really just fights for the heart of his family, his loved ones, his kingdom, those that are entrusted to him. And then this clip of John Q came to me as like, yes, I remember the movie then, it was like, oh, you've got a man who was literally fighting for his son's heart because his son was playing baseball, collapses on the baseball field, they rush into the hospital, and next thing you know they're getting the announcement that, well, your son's going to die if he doesn't get a new heart. And then he doesn't have insurance that will cover that. He doesn't, he can't get Medicare, he can't get anybody to help him or pay for him or do anything, and he's on his own, and his wife's like, do something, because they're going to lose their son, and they're just, they're torn apart, and he has to go fight for them.
Maybe he doesn't do it in the most appropriate way by basically taking hostages at a hospital and locking everybody in there. But what you find out at the end is that he never had even a bullet in the gun. The only time he had one bullet, and that was for him to kill himself if he had to, to give his heart to his son. And this kind of trailer kind of takes you through that story a little bit.
And you can hear the heart of a father who just wants to do everything he can to protect his family. So while you're at it, do you just want to tell him that Rosebud was a sled and Bruce Willis was alive the whole time? Because you just ruined the plot. No, I'm kidding, keep going. Lieutenant Frank Grant, Chicago Police Department, are you the man in charge? That's right. Well, who am I speaking to? John Q. I assume since all the doors are locked, this is a hostage situation, is that correct? Bless me, father.
I know you do things your own way. Blood pressure is dropping fast. He's going into cardiac arrest.
But I don't understand. Mike's heart is useless. He's going to need a transplant or he's going to die.
This thing will make Mike so sick. Transplant surgery is varied. We got insurance. There are no provisions in your policy for procedure of this magnitude.
All right, you won't let me get you to work. We've recently switched carriers. We only give assistance to patients without coverage.
I'm sorry I can't help you. Have you tried Medicaid? No, you don't qualify. My son is dying. I'm broke.
If I don't qualify, who does? I've done everything I can do. I'm sorry. Please.
They are releasing him. Now you need to do something. No, I'll take care of him. Do something.
The hospital's under new management now. Everybody does exactly what I say, nobody will get hurt. I want my kid's name on the donor's list. This is going to end up bad for you, John. Police will do whatever is necessary to preserve the lives of these hostages. They're telling me I've got to take my son home and watch him die. If you could speak to John here right now, what would you say to him? I'd bear with you and you'd take care of him. Find the key.
Find something happens for me. Are you feeling good, baby? Yes, I'm praying, sweetheart.
You're so good. I am not going to bury my son. I got a shot at this guy and I'm going to take it. My son is going to bury me. I'm going to take the shot. How's it going to end, John?
I don't know. And what's really interesting in the whole storyline is that the information gets out as to what he's doing and why he's doing it and then you've got everybody standing outside that is for the hostage taker because they want his son to live and everybody kind of sees the injustice going on that this innocent child could die because the system is set up the way it is. And it's just an interesting story to try to put yourself in those kinds of shoes and say, what would I do? I'm like, boy, who wouldn't maybe go off and in this story, it was never really threatening anybody just pretending to, but still it's real when you're on the other side of the threat and you don't know what's in the gun. So it's just a tough situation that we are called to be in sometimes as a king and we have to make very tough choices. Yeah, that's a great trailer because my heart's beating really fast at the end of it and you know that that was one that was well done and kind of speaks to something inside that what would I do in that situation? Would I have the courage to be a good king outside the conventional?
What would be right to do in that situation? He was still being the only way he knew how to be a good king and fight for the heart of his son. Danny, Andy, you guys got any king stories you want to share?
Danny's from King, so he ought to have some. I am from King, so I was just thinking about family heritage and I think that clip Rodney had made me think of that, but I knew my dad's dad and he was a farmer, which made him kind of a hard man at times to hear dad and some of his brothers tell it, but it was a survival thing, but in essence he was a good man and my father is a good man and I think they ruled well so to speak, not perfect and that kind of thing, but I thought about that. I thought about the heritage of that and one of the things that I got out of the weekend entrenchment thing where it kind of started before that, but you quoted it earlier I think was the scripture, the apple of your eye, well in the Christian Standard Bible it is translated out as protect me as the pupil of your eye and what has happened is that God is showing me that the pupil is what lets light in in your eye and so to go back into the wounding and that kind of thing is to let more light, God's light into the story so to speak, so God explained to me why my father did this or this is how I saw this and God sits down and says, well let me show you the rest of the story kind of thing, so God becomes Paul Harvey I guess, but those are the kind of things and the only other thing I could think of was I read a book, I think John Maxwell and he says if you think you're a leader look back and see if anybody is following, if not you're just taking a walk, so some of us just need to, you know, am I taking a walk or am I actually leading, so yeah. Good.
Andy? Probably mine was I'm just, you know, I know that I didn't always lead well in the family and wasn't a good king there, but one that just really sticks out to me because it really contributed to kind of how I ended up here and was that maybe I was made a king too early I became a manager in my mid 30s, first line manager, but I really liked that and that was kind of, I felt like I had some influence and some say and I felt like a lot of times I came up through the ranks to identify with people and I thought out, but I also thought I was probably the smartest guy in the room a lot of times and shortly after I got that position we outsourced, I lost that position, stay with the company, went to another one, came back, thought I was going to be put back in a management role and I used to tell people I don't care about the money and stuff, I just want some influence. I want to be able to, I want people, but a lot of it probably got into pride and I wanted to be the smartest guy in the room and for whatever reason I was qualified, people like me, for whatever reason that just never happened and I got tired of waiting and I think God led me into this position I am, well I just kind of started out, I'm just an individual contributor and I've realized it was a lot, about that time I started hearing Morgan talk about taking the lowest seat at the table and just kind of stepping back and God has blessed my life so much since then and I've realized that, you know, that the leadership isn't about being the smartest guy in the room, it's not about, you know, even influence to just people to do your whim, you know, it's about understanding people, but I've had opportunities to go for more roles within my company, the management and different stuff and I just didn't really put myself out there, not that I won't eventually make that, I think Morgan says that God wants to give power to men but he wants to be able to be, he wants to know that he can trust them with that power and I think in time maybe but that is not my dying need is to be a manager or a king in an area, I do not have to lead people to lead people.
Exactly, well most often your most effective leaders in an organization are not the people in charge, right, it's other people in the organization that are truly the leaders that set the tone. I don't know if Confucius said this but he should have, too soon old, too late smart and I think that applies in my life and I thought I was being a really great father compared to the fathers that I knew when I was growing up and I have one son that kind of agrees with that and one that says you stunk and so here again, I find a lot of comfort in that saying, too soon old, too late smart. It's probably a fortune cookie, not even where you saw that. If it's not, it should have been.
It should have been, exactly, it would fit on there perfectly along with some numbers, it doesn't mean nothing to anybody. So question, where can we look to see the attributes of a good king, what's the Sunday school answer? Jesus. Jesus, right, did you ever think about, he's called king of kings? Lord of lords. Lord of lords, right, so if he's the king of kings, it means he's the best at being the king.
Amen. Right, so what's some attributes from Jesus, Andy do you want to say something else? One thing I wanted to add to that, though, is the fact that does the Bible really call us kings? Absolutely it does, in Revelation 1.6, let me see if I can get this up here, no, wrong place, so it basically says he, and hath made us kings and priests unto God and his father, so king of kings would be king of us, right, as his children.
Yeah, and it also talks about in Revelation 12, when the devil is cast down, right, I think it's referred to as kings there, and that would be us. So when you think about the king of kings, what's some attributes of Jesus that would be good for us to emulate? Well, there's many attributes, but I go back to Danny's clip of, you've got Simba looking in the water and the father speaking into him, so I think of the baptism as one place in the transfiguration, this is my son in whom I'm well pleased, follow him, listen to him. That is just, you can, in Danny's clip there, I just couldn't take, get off that, because it's like you have a son who knows exactly who he is, that's the perfect story, right, and you're talking about these attributes, it's like, this is the son who knows exactly who he is in the father's eyes, and the father is telling them exactly who he is, that perfect relationship between those two, and with the Holy Spirit, you know, we get it revealed to us that, oh, this is who the son is, what the son has done for you, but just that, that pure sacrifice is where I would probably even start, I mean, you've got the holiness and other things, but it's just that he came here in flesh to die for us sacrificially and gave everything for us, that, you know, we, who were his enemies, he loved us before we were ever his.
Right. You know, for me, compassion, you know, and I've shared this story before, but when he reaches out and he touches the leper before he heals him, because he understands the leper has not been touched in years and years and years, and that would make other people unclean and Jesus doesn't care because he wants to attend to his heart before he attends to his body, right, and just that level of compassion, I want to be able to emulate that and show that to others. You know, his, he was not influenced by popular opinion and we talk about it somewhat, but the, uh, the reality of it is, is always think about the story where he says, we're going to Jerusalem and Thomas says, we'll go and die with you.
This is a bad idea, but you know, popular opinion didn't drive Jesus anywhere. He did what he heard from the father. Right.
Andy? He just, um, meekness with, which is really strength under control. I mean, he, in all situations, even though he, um, he moved in strength, he also did it in love.
So yeah. And I would throw in there real quickly, just honesty, speaking truth and love, right? How important that is to be very honest, but in a loving way, go to masculine journey.org to register for the upcoming bootcamp coming up November 17th through 20th.
Again, that's masculine journey.org. Next week, we will finish this topic on the sage stage. Can't wait to talk about it. We'll talk to you next week. This is the truth network.
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