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COURAGEOUS

COURAGEOUS
August 24
16:58 2018

By: Mike Rudon Jr.

Just this week, I almost lost my life at the hands of a bunch of women in a bus about to leave Belmopan. There I was, sitting minding my own business, when this woman walks up to me and says – ‘I was sitting there.’ Now here’s the thing. There were no more seats on the bus by this time, so getting up meant leaving the bus and waiting for another. Here’s another thing. I’m pretty sure she hadn’t been sitting there. I probably just looked the likely pansy. And then I remembered in our men’s meeting that Saturday that we talked about being courageous and standing up for what is right. So I looked her dead in the eyes, and then got up and gave her the seat. Who am I kidding? There was this bunch of big, loud women already paying attention and I would have been lynched. Ain’t got no time for that on a good, good Monday morning.

There’s this movie. It’s called Courageous. This bunch of men just decided one day that they would do the right things, no matter how difficult it was. They felt they owed it to their children, their families, their communities and to themselves. They felt that they had an obligation to do right by this precious gift of life bestowed by God. They vowed to be good men, to be Godly men. It’s an amazing movie. It blew me away. There was a time I wouldn’t have taken the time to watch it. Not my thing, I would have said.

As I sat watching the movie, I felt this sense of extreme shame, even frustration and anger. I wanted to be like these men in the movie because I believed in what they wanted to do. They knew there were those who would scorn them, laugh at them and take them lightly. They didn’t care.They would do the right things and praise their God, and to hell with the rest. And yet I can’t seem to get there. I know what the right thing is. I know that I need to do the right thing. And then I do the wrong thing.

I don’t know quite how I got to this point where I’m (almost) comfortable speaking about my God, and speaking about how critical it is that we become real men in His image; how important it is that we teach our children to love God and to do the right things. I sat in Church one day and Louis was saying this phrase over and over – as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord. It resonated with me.

It’s the craziest thing. A lot of people have expressed shock, borderline horror, because I talk about my addiction to alcohol and perpetual struggle so freely. They don’t say it, but I can tell they’re embarrassed for me. They’re a little ashamed, of me and for me. That’s okay too. I understand. But can you believe that it’s easier for me to talk about alcohol and the damage it has done to my life than it is to talk about God? That’s an incredible thing. For a long time, it was pretty much more embarrassing for me to talk about God than it was for me to talk about getting drunk and not remembering how I got home or what I did before I got home. What kind of sorcery is that?

Maybe it’s the society we live in. You post something on Facebook about God and get a few likes and maybe a comment or two. Post something stupid about drinking and sex and debauchery, throw in a couple expletives and the whole FB world wants to weigh in. People love that crap.

Listen, we as men need to start doing the right thing. Do you realize how screwed up Belize is? There’s no moral guidance coming from anywhere – sad to say not even from the Church (looking up just in case lightning strikes me). In a lot of cases it seems to me, and to others, I’m sure, that the Church is there primarily to collect money every Sunday and then their work is done, until the next Sunday that is.

We certainly won’t get any moral guidance from our political leaders. My lerd, that is a corrupt, worthless bunch for the most part. In those old books I grew up on, there was always a villain who raped and plundered and stole and generally did bad stuff. I figure our politicians make them look like sweet, angelic kindergarten kids. Our political leaders are rotten to the core, and they wear it like a badge of honor. They own it.

So who will do the right thing in our families, in our communities, in our country? It will have to be us. Simple as that. It’s not an easy road. Trust me I know that. It has more potholes than Lake Independence Boulevard, and that’s a lot. Sometimes I start the journey and somehow end up in a dark bar smelling beer and cheap perfume, for no good reason whatsoever. Sometimes I plan a good weekend with the family, and end up in the park across the street drinking, and staring at the house where my family sits waiting for me. Did I mention it’s not an easy road?

But we’ve got to do it. We have to. If you’re like me, you’ve made bad decisions which will live with you for the rest of your lives, however long that is. We need to start making some good ones. Let’s be real men for a change. Let’s be courageous.

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