I am a self-professed bibliophile in fact Sarah Reinhard billed me as such in a recent interview. I love books and one stands above the rest. That’s not to detract from others but in everyone’s library there is one title that holds more meaning to the reader than any other. For me that book is the one that changed my life. Without this book the Catholic Book Blogger may have never happened.
Be A Man!: Becoming the Man God Created You to Be by Father Larry Richards is the title of that book and it is a great read. If you give this book the time and attention it deserves there is no way you will walk away from it without becoming a changed person. The book is geared towards men as the title so fittingly states. The areas in which Father Larry leads the reader to examine are quite frankly, not comfortable places to be. You will find things wrong in your life I guarantee it, but Father Larry gives us the tools to fix them.
The book leads men down a path of self-examination with the end result, hopefully, being some changes made in one’s life. This is a well written, easy read and consists of ten chapters. All are of equal value and they are as follows: Be a Man Who Stays Focused on the Final Goal, ….Who Lives as a Beloved Son, ….Who Repents, ….Who Lives in the Holy Spirit, ….Who is Strong, ….Who is Loving, ….Who is Wise, …Who Lives as He Was Created, ….Who Is Holy, ….Who Changes The World. Each chapter ends with a “Three Tasks You Must Accomplish” and “Questions and Actions” sections which drive you to accomplish the tasks necessary to achieve the goal of the chapter. To tie everything together, at the end of the book, is a checklist titled “Thirty Tasks You Must Accomplish to Become the Man You Were Created to Be.”If you have ever had the opportunity to hear Father Larry speak than you know….he doesn’t candy coat his topics and he does not mince words. This style shines through in his book. That’s ok though as this approach is exactly what men need. Direct, to the point and let’s get it done. Right out of the gate, in the first words of Chapter 1 you know you are in for quite a ride. “You are going to die!”
The focus of the book is to bring men back into the role they were created for and that is to be strong fathers and husbands. We have gone from a society that portrays fathers as strong domestic leaders like Ward Cleaver and Charles Ingalls to bumbling fools like Ray Barone and Al Bundy. To me that is one reason for societies downward spiral and this book attempts to repair that.
This book is a MUST read for men. Yes, it is a motivational book BUT it’s like no other you will ever read. As Father Larry says in his talks he punches you in the gut, than makes you laugh and does it again and again until you get the point. If you give this book the chance it deserves it will most definitely change your life. I’m not saying you will be perfect after reading it. We all have our struggles and we always will. That’s a part of our human nature. What I will say is, this book changed my life and it can change yours. I will close this review with Father Larry’s last words in this book that appear in the overview of the Thirty Tasks checklist. “So, don’t be afraid –take courage and be a man!”