…and the 4th wise man gave Jesus the gift of beard….OK, no, that line can not be found anywhere in the bible. Or in any other religion to my knowledge. However, the beard is a very spiritual thing. The following will be directed mainly at the “men folk”.
There is a very large difference between boys and men. Unfortunately, the society that we all live in today, fails to see a difference. Our society says, you are allowed to buy and drink alcohol at the age of 21. The “powers that be” decided that “men” are more mature at this age, and therefore more responsible when drinking. However, the same “powers that be” say you can go and die for your country at the ripe old age of 18. A very large contradiction to say the least. But it begs to ask the question…at what point does a boy become a man…?
In truth, the answer to that question, has more factors, avenues, side notes, and the like than i can cover in one blog post. So, in order to stay true to title form, i will simply say…when he grows a beard.
As much as the beard has become a revolving fashion left over from the late 70’s and early 80’s, it is severely underrated, and misunderstood.
The beard is a symbol of wisdom. Think about it. Every picture, you and I saw growing up, of an old wise man, mythological wizard, and even Obi Wan Kin-obi had a beard. The reason for this is simple. Time. It takes time to grow a beard. And in that time, you have the opportunity to learn a great deal about life. You grow in your wisdom by making mistakes, and learning from them . You learn that what you thought you knew at age 18, isn’t true at all at age 35. In the time it takes to grow a beard, you grow spiritually and emotionally. The point I’m making is, there is no real wisdom in the mind of boy. In the mind of a boy, tomorrow will always come. The sun will always rise tomorrow. Yet in the mind of a man, you know that tomorrow is not promised to us. You know, because of “life lived”, to let the ones you love know you love them. You learn to plan for the worst and expect the best. These are the beginnings of wisdom.
The beard is a symbol of patience. It takes great care and patience to grow an epic beard. If you decide today to grow a beard, do not expect to wake up in the morning and have a full beard. It takes patience. When you have the patience to grow a beard, you have the patience it takes to be a man. Lets take a quick look at relationships and marriages. They both take a lot of understanding, love, devotion, and patience. As men, we are brought up to fix things. We are taught by our fathers(father figures) to hammer a nail, bait a hook, change a tire, etc. We understand how to fix things. If it’s broke, we fix it. I am man. I make fire. I burn down house. I rebuild house. I am man. This is how we think on a very sub conscious level. The problem is we carry this mentality over into our relationships and marriages. At times, it’s a good thing. The washing machine breaks…I am man, I fix washing machine. Other times….not so much. Women see things very differently from men. The key is to have the wisdom, and patience to know the differences and find joy in them. There are going to be times when your wife or girlfriend may just sit on the bed and cry. You come in the room, and your first thought may be, “whose ass am i kicking for making you cry?!”The problem with that line of thinking is, she may have absolutely no idea why she is sad. While your mentality to protect your partner is not wrong, if you had taken the time to learn patience(that comes with growing a beard) you would know to communicate with her, not talk at her. And she would not be throwing a pillow at you, telling you to kick your own ass.
Growing a beard takes time. Just as becoming a man takes time. And in truth it has nothing to with age. I know several people in their mid forties who are still boys in mind and spirit. And likewise, I know people in their 20’s who are true bearded God fearing men. I will close by saying this. We as men are given the gift of beard. What we do with it, defines who we are. Who our sons will become. And who our daughters will look for in a husband. Whether you wear your beard on the outside or in your heart….be a bearded man.