Ever think about what Jesus was like when he lived? I mean what he looked like. I have wondered about this quite often, especially in trying to make Him identifiable to my teenage sons. I believe he was the epitome of masculinity—everything a man should be. I envision a man who had a BIG presence—attractive, tall, muscular, strong. Jesus was a carpenter before there were power tools, and He walked miles and miles in the desert heat. He was weather worn and beautiful—a man who worked hard with his hands. I picture a man who is larger than life. He came as a man on purpose; the Father sent His SON. I believe this should tell men that it is okay to be men. Masculinity is desirable; men are meant to be strong and powerful, just as Jesus was. What I do not visualize is a “hippy Jesus,” a wimpified version of a man. Sure, He is often depicted as having long hair and wearing a gown, but the Jesus I imagine is not anything like this. What makes us imagine Jesus as a doormat? I do not buy into the depiction of a weak Jesus who “turned the other cheek.” He wanted peace but was not a doormat who lived in fear. He dared those who were against Him to give Him the best they had; He could take it. He confronted powerful figures; he let sinners know they were wrong; he was a commander. The Jesus I imagine was one who overturned tables in the temple and roared with the presence of a lion. He had fortitude and might. I feel comfort in a masculine ideal of God. My sons desire a strong figure to emulate who uses love as strength, not weakness.
10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his power. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, so that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For our[b] struggle is not against enemies of blood and flesh, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers of this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, so that you may be able to withstand on that evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. 14 Stand therefore, and fasten the belt of truth around your waist, and put on the breastplate of righteousness. 15 As shoes for your feet put on whatever will make you ready to proclaim the gospel of peace. 16 With all of these,[c] take the shield of faith, with which you will be able to quench all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. (Ephesians 6:10-17)
Charla is a life-long Catholic, married since 1995. She has three children who attend Catholic school and university. Charla has been teaching high school English literature at the same Catholic high school she attended for over 15 years. She has Bachelor of Arts degrees in English, Latin American Studies, and Secondary Education, as well as a Masters degree in Education. Charla has served as a lector and Eucharistic minister at her parish and school. She enjoys reading, cooking, running, and all activities involving her children. Her special devotions are to the Blessed Mother, St. Teresa of Avila, St. Catherine of Alexandria, and the Holy Rosary.