I often worry about raising my children in a society with ever-changing values, and although I worry more (perhaps) about my daughters, I also worry about my son. My adorable little boy is innocent now, but he will be exposed to society's skewed perspective on what it means to be a "real man." I hope and pray that my husband and I can teach him to be a "real man" in God's eyes: a man of God.
One of the first examples I think of when I think of a man of God is Captain Moroni. Alma 48:17 tells us: "Yea, verily, verily I say unto you, if all men had been, and were, and ever would be, like unto Moroni, behold, the very powers of hell would have been shaken forever; yea, the devil would never have power over the hearts of the children of men." Isn't that incredible? If all men were like Moroni, the powers of hell would be shaken FOREVER. But why? What made Moroni so different, so worthy of such a compliment?
Alma 48:11-13 says: "...Moroni was a strong and a mighty man; he was a man of a perfect understanding; yea, a man that did not delight in bloodshed; a man whose soul did joy in the liberty and the freedom of his country, and his brethren from bondage and slavery; Yea, a man whose heart did swell with thanksgiving to his God, for the many privileges and blessings which he bestowed upon his people; a man who did labor exceedingly for the welfare and safety of his people. Yea, and he was a man who was firm in the faith of Christ, and he had sworn with an oath to defend his people, his rights, and his country, and his religion, even to the loss of his blood."
If I were to read between the lines a bit, I would presume Moroni lived the 13th Article of Faith perfectly: "We believe in being honest, true, chaste, benevolent, virtuous, and in doing good to all men; indeed, we may say that we follow the admonition of Paul-We believe all things, we hope all things, we have endured many things, and hope to be able to endure all things. If there is anything virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy, we seek after these things."
Alma 48:18-19 also tells us, "Behold, he was a man like unto Ammon, the son of Mosiah, yea, and even the other sons of Mosiah, yea, and also Alma and his sons, for they were all men of God. Now behold, Helaman and his brethren were no less serviceable unto the people than was Moroni; for they did preach the word of God, and they did baptize unto repentance all men whosoever would hearken unto their words."
Along with my husband, these are the men I want my son to look up to as his heroes. These are the role models, examples, and missionaries that I want to teach my son to be like. I hope and pray that as my son studies the gospel, he will learn to be a real man--a man of God.
The hymn "Rise Up, O Men of God" invites the men in the world to unite together in righteousness.
Rise Up, O Men of God
Have done with lesser things.
Give heart and soul and mind and strength
To serve the King of Kings.
Rise up, O men of God,
In one united throng.
Bring in the day of brotherhood
And end the night of wrong.
Rise up, O men of God!
Tread where his feet have trod.
As brothers of the Son of Man,
Rise up, O men of God!
Rise up! Rise up! Rise up!
Let us teach our sons to be like Moroni, the sons of Mosiah, and the other heroes in the scriptures. Let us encourage them to rise up, to be better than the world, to value the freedom and welfare of others more than their own desires.
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