Tender Warrior: Every Man’s Purpose, Every Woman’s Dream, Every Child’s Hope by Stu Weber is a textbook on how to be a strong, Christian leader in today’s world. Okay, so maybe not exactly a textbook, but it’s purty good. There are a great many books out there teaching us exactly what it means to be a man of God. Many are solid, and many of them tend to cover a lot of the same information – which I’m not knocking; it just means a lot of individuals are tapping into the same resources.
Weber’s representation of a Christian man as a “tender warrior”, though not earthshatteringly different, is refreshing. He makes the distinction that “tender warrior” does not equal “soft male.” Tender does not mean “effeminate or easily yielding” (that’s soft according to Webster). Rather it means to be “compassionate, kind, or affectionate.” As the Stormin’ Norman Schwarzkopf once said when asked if he was afraid to cry, “No….I’m afraid of a man who won’t cry.” Thus, I feel totally justified in going to see chick flicks and bawling all the way through! Or something like that…maybe I missed Stormin’s point.
Weber presents what he calls the four pillared man. As opposed to “blueprints”, Weber calls these four pillars the “fingerprints…of the Artist” or the “four rythms in a man.” These are:
To back up these pillars, Weber uses a host of examples from personal experience in the ministry, but also from his days serving in Vietnam. Speaking to the warrior in every man’s heart, he gives example of men in his life that filled these pillar positions – though not necessarily doing so from the position of a “Christian authority.” I think this adds to the fact that these pillars – at least in concept – are ingrained in us and evidence of God’s hand upon us.
In the end, Weber calls us to, as Joe Stowell so aptly put it, “go beyond just being a male and discover what it meant to be a ‘man.'” The journey of a man is one of searching for purpose and initiation. And it’s really nice to have a few “tender warriors” mentor us along the way to show us what’s what. I really enjoyed Weber’s perspective and point-driving illustrations. He also appears that he designed this for a small group setting. There are questions to discuss at the end of each chapter, and I think it would be ideal for a men’s group, absolutely ideal.
As stated in the title, we have an opportunity to be “Every Woman’s Dream” and “Every Child’s Hope.” While I’d be more interested in being “One Woman’s Dream” at this point, I accept the premise. God’s desire for me is not to wander aimlessly through my purpose, marriage (futuristicly speaking), and fatherhood (also futuristicly). Rather, it is to fulfill the purpose, dreams, and hopes that I was designed for. This book is a tool that can help me fulfill those roles. I’d like to be a four pillar man, and you can be too! (Hypothetically speaking.)
I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review. There is no requirement for me to give a positive review; it is just a good book.