Okay this post is about a man’s getaway. So for this pilgrimage you will want to take with you all the men in you survival group. This post is geared towards men because that is what i am and I understand it better than i (or any man) understand women. However you women are not left out here. In a similar manner you can plan a woman’s retreat. This will be more than just peeing outside and skinny dipping.
So, what is the idea here. Men become men, in the company of other men. Part of a young man’s development is that need for acceptance. Being affirmed, both in faith and as a man. A question that comes up alot, At what point is a boy a man. He really doesn’t know. Many go through life not feeling like a man. Always seeking to fit in. Doing whatever he things will win him that acceptance. We wear many masks. We may appear as one thing to one person and something else to another. We all seek that acceptance and affirmation.
God put that in us for a reason. Look at Jesus at his baptism. A voice called down. This is my son, in whom i am well pleased. The first step is to understand we have to accept God’s love. It is given freely without works. It can’t be earned. We have to understand that. It doesn’t need to be earned. Many people get it in their heads you will be accepted by doing something. Work hard enough and you will be loved. Then they are never sure if they have
done enough. God loves us. We need to love each other. God accepts us and we need to accept each other. We are suppose to model God’s love for each other.
So for this retreat, camping is a good idea. Get in the great out doors. Male bonding is easier done in a social setting with only males there. It may sound corny, but during this gathering start off by saying one good thing that you admire about each member there. Be serious about it. You are affirming them. You are giving them what they need and what God wants you to give them. They may not admit it, but it is important and meaningful to them.
Discuss various topics such as found in proverbs. If you have your pocket new testament with you as mentioned in a previous post. Proverbs 30 mentions biblical womanhood.
Before that somewhere is proverbs about being a man and avoiding harlots. Good for discussion.
Various activities should be involved you know like fishing and pitching tents are great survival skills to learn. Playing catch is a great one it you have younger children involved. Practice such survival skills as navigating in the wilderness. Telling how much daylight is left by placing your fingers between the sun and the horizon. each finger you can fit under the sun is fifteen minuets. That is how much daylight is left.
You can learn to mark trails and identify tracks and scat. And of course peeing outside. It is actually not as easy to do as one might think if you have a shy bladder. I couldn’t at first even when i was alone let alone with other people nearby. It is freeing though. Something women probably wouldn’t understand and a very male activity. There is little more affirming than being comfortable around other men like that. That is why so many do it and skinny dipping and running around in your boxers. This is refered to by some as the BIFF experience. (bathroom in forest floor) but doesn’t have to be literally. It is the idea of putting yourself in an uncomftorable somewhat revealing situation that is accepted by everyone. It brings with it a sence of bonding.
There are trailblazing symbols commonly used are laying sticks in certain ways or stacking small rocks in certain ways to indicate direction or danger. Go this way or that way. Not this way. You could lay sticks out in arrows. Pointing the direction you are going when you come to a fork in the path. Or lay them in an “X” to indicate not this way turn around. Stacking rocks two high and placing a third to one side indicates which direction you are going.