Boys to Men: What Does it Mean to be Wild at Heart?

I’m reading Wild at Heart by John Eldredge again, and it has been tearing my heart into beautiful little pieces. I didn’t know how much I needed it.

It’s awakened a part of my soul that has been lying dormant. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing – but I recognize that it’s time to dive into my masculinity.

This is burning on my heart like a roaring wildfire, and it needs to get out of my brain. You’ve been warned!

Japheth Mast Blog | Boys to Men: What Does it Mean to be a Man Wild at Heart?

Eldredge talks about the one question that every man has, that every man must have an answer to. Our supreme question is "Do I have what it takes?"

“Do I have what it takes?”

Do I have what it takes to be a man? Am I powerful? Am I enough?

If we don’t get this one question answered – which is the case for a frightening majority of men – it is devastating.

Little boys - lonely, terrified, and numb - trapped inside the body of a grown up man is all too common.

Little boys afraid of asking women on dates. Little boys passively watching TV for hours on end, wondering why they feel empty inside. Little boys getting involved in marital affairs because they need adventure, but don’t know how to meet that need in a healthy way.

Because here’s the thing. Every man, past, present, and future longs for three things:

An adventure to live, a battle to fight, and a beauty to rescue.

If I don’t have that, I will die inside. My heart cannot live in comfort and safety... There it will die. I must take risks.

Think about it. What does every 6 or 8 year old boy want to be when they grow up?

Superman. John Wayne. William Wallace. Indiana Jones. Luke Skywalker.

Fierce men. Strong men. Courageous men.

There are no passive wimps on that list. These men are wild at heart.

We don't need more "Mr. Nice Guys." We need men who are dangerous... who take great risks... who fight for something.

“The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation.” – Henry David Thoreau

It’s time for us to ask the question. We must discover that “I have what it takes to be a man!” The only other option is to live a meaningless, passive life full of regret and fear.

“Do I have what it takes?”

We must find out. The only way we can get the question answered is to be around real men who can bestow masculinity in us. As Eldredge puts it, masculinity is an essence that is bestowed. It is like something is passed from a man to a boy, and the boy turns into a man.

Femininity can never bestow masculinity. Women are just as critical as men, obviously, but they cannot create men. They cannot impart masculinity.

The only TV show that I will watch right now is Bear Grylls. It’s incredible, worth checking out. It’s a man’s show. It’s about adventure, and survival, and testing your grit in the wild.

Going on risky, crazy, adrenaline-pumping adventures in the wilderness doesn’t make me a man – but it is what men do.

All men die; few men ever really live.


It’s time to ask the question. So go ahead, ask it. It will be scary. It will require courage. It will test you. But its’ a question that every man must ask if he is to live the life he is called to lead. And I have a curious feeling that you’ll find that you do have everything you need…

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