Playtime (men need a time to be a kid again, most men get buried under the weight of too much responsibility…. unless you become like a little child you cannot enter into the kingdom of god) playtime may get them closer to God and receiving from God than a 1hr long lecture.
In ten days I’m flying to Italy to lead a men’s retreat for some priests. My question: What should it look like in a post-Covid world?
Men have a lot to process, but so many of us need help processing it. We want to have more friends, but struggle to be a good friend.
I’d love to get your advice. What are the components of a good retreat? We will be in the mountains in Isernia. Here are elements that we’re including:
Good food & drinks
Sharing in small groups
Guys – have you ever experienced a good men’s retreat? What made it good?
We’ve seen such great conferences for women, but what about for men? Back in the day, Promise Keepers was a big deal. They would fill stadiums with men. I remember Stand In the Gap – I joined hundreds of thousands of men filling the Washington DC Mall. We sang and speakers talked.
The main thing seemed to be seeing that many God-fearing men in one place. I remember walking along the Mall and chancing upon an old friend from high school who had since become a Christian.
John Eldredge has a retreat for small groups of men in Colorado.
The best retreats I’ve been a part of have been in places where guys could clear their heads of the noise and confusion in their lives. Some retreats have included too much teaching. Creating space for guys to share their lives seems to help.
What are your thoughts?
Good point. And you are a good one to make it! Thanks for being such a good student of what men need to come alive, Troy.
Some of the greatest aspects of men’s retreats I have been apart of were being able to have vulnerable conversations with small groups of men and being able to get alone with the Lord to reflect for periods of time throughout the retreat to work through guided journaling questions. Kayaking down the 13 points river was a bonus too!
Somebody who’s willing to ask hard questions for the men to wrestle with. Here’s a couple:
– Why are you so angry?
– Why are you in such a hurry?
I’m curious. What do you include in men’s retreats when you lead them?
Somebody showing REAL interest until the issue is well placed on a REAL platform to be able to move on.
Great question, Seth. I have been giving this some thought over the past few days. Here’s what I’m thinking a good men’s retreat should include:
Get away from the routine, out into the wilderness/nature
Away from distractions (cell phones and laptops)
Silence and solitude
Physical challenges and play (re-creation)
In the company of like-hearted men
A trusted guide to curate the experience
Time and space to wrestle with the big questions (identity, calling)
Healing of wounds
Intimacy with the Father
@Stac that is a great list
I went to a small event a few months ago put on by Men of the Woods and I usually hate events for men but this was a blast. You would like this. https://menofthewoods.com/
Two things most interesting to me:
1 – it was a curated event so the group had a unique vibe. most had some kind of entrepreneurial bent.
2 – there was no ‘speaker’ but instead everyone gave a 5 minute talk about overcoming something, at 3 different segments during the weekend. the motivation being “everyone has something to contribute” instead of just listening to someone all weekend.
Hope it goes great, I’m sure those men will benefit from your wisdom and leadership!
Thanks for that, Tony. I passed the link on to a friend who works near Snowshoe. Looks like fun!
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