I thought today is just an ordinary work day. I grabbed myself coffee from McDonald’s and took the shuttle like how I usually do everyday. I sat on the middle part of the van, the long seat behind the driver and what I didn’t know was that in a few minutes, I would be in for one crazy ride.
If you take the shuttle, you’d know for sure that sometimes it gets so tight “masikip” in there. Today’s ride was exactly like that. But what makes it so different was the only guy who was sitting next to me. He refused to give way and instead kept on pushing his shoulder over mine so that he would keep sitting comfortably, leaning on the back of his seat. I tried to straighten my shoulders to find a comfortable position, and so that the girl seating beside me wouldn’t get squeezed into the door. But he wouldn’t budge. He kept on pushing. He was so heavy and I couldn’t breathe! I tried to resist but until I got off, I could only shake my head in disbelief. Because every time I resisted, he kept on pushing stronger, forgetting completely that I am girl. And that he is a gentleman.
I know I could've just moved forward and let him sit there comfortably while I hold on to the edge of my seat. I did that on my first shuttle ride this morning, just before this one—because we were all girls and I was sitting next to an old lady. But this time, I was next to a big guy. And I am a lady. And deep in my heart, I know it was just not right. It’s just not right.
Where is Chivalry?
Sometimes, it breaks my heart to think that we’re losing the “gentleman” in our men. Sometimes I wish we could ask, but then we cannot demand our guys to become gentlemen. We can only inspire and teach. But to have a real gentleman spirit requires a change of heart~for gentlemanliness requires service and sacrifice. To give the elderly lady a seat. To notice that a girl needs to help in opening the door. To offer a hand to someone, to give way, to serve. To become a gentleman means you would need to put others’ comfort above your own, to put selfish ways aside for the benefit of another. And I guess that’s what manhood is all about. Sacrifice, service and love defines a real man.
At times like the incident this morning, or like this afternoon on the train when the guy in front of me pretended to fall asleep because he doesn't want to offer his seat, I wonder if chivalry is already dead..or if not, where are the gentlemen? But I praise God because when I thought that chivalry does not exist anymore, He reminds me that I am wrong.“Among God’s people we understand that a man is to protect a women; to protect a women’s honor; to protect a woman’s heart; to protect a woman’s reputation; sometimes even to protect a woman’s health, her safety. Guys, that’s our job, God gave it to us. Woe unto the man who fails in that responsibility.” ~Dr. Albert Mohler
When A Knight Comes Riding on a HorseI remember one night I was riding the train alone. A UST varsity player got up and offered me a seat, much to the surprise and wide-eyes of his friends. And then there was this kind construction worker who looked so tired but gave up his seat so the ladies in the train could take his place. And the yuppie on the shuttle who moved and sat on the edge of his seat so the girl next to him could sit comfortably. I also remember my officemates who are kind enough to open doors, carry heavy things and fall in line to buy our tickets and make sure we get home safe.
It’s so beautiful to find that there still exists what we hope for: Men who are kind and helpful. Men who chooses to serve. Men who stands to fulfill their role as a true gentleman. It's so heartwarming to find that there are still men who cares about a woman’s comfort and values her heart. Men who have the character and heart of Jesus.
And so I guess today, I would pray that our culture would encourage this gentleman attitude in our men and teach them to our young boys. I pray that girls would not forget to be grateful and supportive of those who still chooses to offer these little sacrifices and help. I hope that one day, our nation would be changed as men takes on the challenge and the responsibility of a godly man--willing to love and sacrifice even if it would sometimes mean denying themselves and being inconvenienced to serve others. I pray that we would all perform our part as men and women of God in this generation.
Let me end with this beautiful words from Cole Ryan. I hope every man would read this and find in their hearts to desire to become real gentlemen.
“Being a ‘gentleman’ goes way beyond holding the door for a girl and letting her go first all the time. It’s about truly serving her. I think when it comes to the way we should treat women, it’s a good idea to look to the way Jesus treated women.
He laid his life down for His bride. He sacrificed His life for her, He lowered Himself for her. We must love women sacrificially in the same way that Jesus loved His bride sacrificially.
Being a gentleman is about more than just being caring and thoughtful, it’s about possessing sacrificial and selfless Christ-like characteristics. I don’t even know if it’s possible to be a gentleman without knowing and possessing the character of Jesus.”