On August 3, 2019, I had the delight and honor to learn from DeVon Franklin at Alfred Street Baptist Church.
He dropped many jewels; discussing some of the most difficult, mystified, and overlooked parts of our daily experience in a world full of distractions and fleshly pleasure. Though the topics shared are applicable for all men, they were tailored for Christian Black men.
Brother Devon Franklin started out discussing the difference between men who cause pain versus men who heal pain, and what that looks like. He led into examining Galatians 5:17, highlighting the struggles of the Spirit and the Flesh. Then, referencing Romans 8:18-20, he discussed the dichotomy of doing bad and wanting to do good. Love is the master. Lust is merely selfish gain by any means necessary; a means to an end.
DeVon Franklin suggests men should use the following methods to prevent urges from leading to detrimental action: “The 10 count” (time between the feeling and the act), “Play out the consequences” (Back to the Future strategy), “Put yourself in the mind frame of doing the act”, “look to the side of you and see the person you’re committed to”, and “ask yourself, is a moment of pleasure worth damaging your integrity forever?”
Real men confess instead of suppress, which aids men’s dating experiences. He said, “the person you’re dealing with is a daughter of God and not an object of your pleasure.”
Lastly, he claimed men don’t know how to love themselves, which is why men don’t know how to love women. Men tend to overemphasize what they do, rather than who they are. Rather than merely doing enough to get by, he must strive to become who he is destined to be. That does not take accolades, recognition, education, experience nor salary. It takes work on the inside, with just him and God. Love is a selfless act, for all to benefit. When a man begins to love himself, the sun shines a little brighter, for hope, progress, and transformation is on the horizon.