I’m not aiming at writing a well-structured essay with this theme. Although I can, but that may dilute the message I needed to pass across while I’ll end up achieving nothing. I’m 26 this year and single. First, stating my exact age has never been a normal thing to do. Don’t ask me why. But that’s what I’ve known to be the norm for a long while. Men are not meant to disclose their age because that number is unique, revealing, much like a password, and automatically confers and demands responsibility at the same time!
However, well and averagely accomplished men often celebrate their major birthdays to the admiration of their friends and colleagues, and the fiftieth year has become a bench mark in the society. This is usually celebrated and publicized in the news and all media are used by their friends and relatives for felicitations and hearty cheers. Nonetheless, I still question the basis of the celebration of those attained years known as golden, diamond and so on. Are they a matter of number of years spent or a compelling documentary of impeccable milestones achieve in such a short period in time?
How about the first half of these golden years? We call it the silver years, but tell me, how much of this tag those it carry? Turning 25 for me was far from being a wonderful experience. I was determined to celebrate the unique number I’d attained in a memorable way; in a one star hotel or a park at least; with some notable persons in my part of the world; friends, teenagers and potential leaders I’ve worked with for a while, as well as present an inspirational book that I was ‘dotting the I’s and crossing the T’s. However I’m surprised I didn’t. The strongest point of my discouragement and total inertness about the whole plan then was answering the question; ‘What have you achieved that you want to celebrate?’ Also, the thought on if it’s worth the spending further dampened my resolve. But I wished I had figured out the ‘why’ as well.
What would make the whole difference between the man at fifty and the one I left at twenty five I think, is the responsibility that both have assumed as they moved up in life. And a part of that is often captured in their achievements and life’s profile. So I had stopped and pondered if the later was irresponsible, or had accomplished less; having acquired a degree some years before and on the way to pitching a tent in the corporate world. The former indeed had chaired many organisations and being on the board of several companies, just as the later had done in small groups and formations for some couple of years and was currently doing; acquiring and applying new skills, while aiming at achieving set goals. What about family life? None is pretty disadvantaged by marital status, as sharing one’s love is what matters most.
Responsibility is therefore tied to one’s tasks and obligations to attain to a minimum level of success and achievement at every phase of life. Responsibility makes a complete man. Our society regards a man who fails in his responsibilities as not man enough. There are however no agencies that assigns men their life’s responsibility; being nature conferred and each man to discover and live up to his. Thus, the sense of responsibility has become men’s sixth sense. I’ve got to develop mine and put it to optimal use. However, more than sensing my responsibility is the need to take action. I call that shouldering my responsibility.
Nature has already done a wonderful architectural masterpiece in the design of men’s shoulders and overall anatomy. Many even show off with this so called macho while others have made careers with it as models. But beyond those aesthetics and ephemerals, men’s body form only supports the fact that it’s meant to bear weights;every weight you can think of including those of marriage, finance, parenting and leadership. What a weight of responsibility! Men really have heavy tasks to perform you may conclude; and yes they do. Little wonder why some have abandoned theirs, failing to give it their shoulders. But I’ve often wondered on what else those folks have given their strength to.
Preparation is vital for delivering any task perfectly. My thought quickly goes to weightlifters, who have to train and discipline their bodies regularly to become efficient and maintain their performance. I glean some facts from those fellows.Continuous training is a practice; the entire body is disciplined and heavy and yet heavier loads and tasks are undertaken on daily basis. Capacity building is the key word. Here’s the truth; a man that aims at shouldering greater responsibilities in his lifetime must consciously commit to his personal development. I bet you friend; you can’t afford nor cope with the shame and humiliation that’s associated with being branded an ‘Irresponsible man’ either now or in few years’ time which we casually call the future.
Finally, How old are you? What weight of responsibility are you currently carrying? What greater weights are you aiming at and what are you doing to achieve that? From my study of the Bible it interests me greatly to note that when he was finally anointed the King of the whole Israel and Judah at Hebron; the point at which he had already Killed the lion, bear and Goliath; have fought and won several battles including getting the foreskins of two hundred philistine to a crafty demented Saul as his daughter’s bride price; and having being the protector and provider of his entire family during the crisis; the man David was said to be just 30 years (2 Samuel 5:1-5)!
Take up the big challenges and run; you can’t be sluggish when you carry a heavy weight!!!