“Do I have the time to travel to Colorado this weekend?”

“Is this camp going to be lame?”

“Is anyone cool going?’

“Are we going to be singing “Kum-ba-yah” the whole time?”

Although these statements could be quotes from an average high school student (anywhere in the world) before they experience camp, in this case they weren’t.  Rather, they were the questions I was getting from men who were going with me to MAN CAMP at Frontier Ranch this past month. To be honest, I had some of the same questions myself!  250 Men at a YL Camp for a Weekend? I couldn’t only imagine the possibilities for something less than great.  I was a little skeptical going into that first year; I had no idea what to expect. I’ve had the privilege the last three years to attend the Young Life Man Camp at Frontier Ranch, and thankfully, none of my fears or hesitations came true. Actually, the reality was the opposite.

What DID I find? I found myself laughing, resting, being challenged, entertained, inspired, and having meaningful conversations with men that I have been friends with for years as well with others I met that weekend. My revelation was that ‘most of the men in my community are longing for deeper relationships, but they either think they are too busy to cultivate them or have no idea how to make it happen.’ Man Camp was the vehicle to help those deeper relationships flourish.  I can honestly say that each year I have gone I have returned changed! Not an easy thing to do.

I think Man Camp provides a great place for guys to begin the journey of sharing life and space with other guys. We desperately need safe, humorous, life-giving places for men to be able to be themselves, while still being called to live into all that God is calling them to be. It is so fun to watch a room full of adult men laugh, sing, listen, and truly experience Christ in such a freeing, significant way. We all know how beautiful camp is for our teenage friends.  What I’ve always believed, and have come to know, is that adult men are just as hungry and open to God as our adolescents, they just don’t have many spaces where it is provided for them. In fact, although the ages change, the questions remain the same surroundingife, and God and what life with God could look like. Get a glimpse of Man Camp by clicking this LINK.

Man Camp is an easy way to invite some guys into something more, with typical Young Life excellence, humor, and focus on Jesus. It can be a great reminder or introduction to Young Life for men in your community. EVEN BETTER, have you ever wondered how to get your COMMITTEE or a group of dads better connected to Jesus or the world of Young Life? Invite them to a weekend with you at Man Camp, and watch their love for each other and Jesus deepen! Better yet, get one of your committee guys to own Man Camp for your area and help them fill a cabin like we do our teenage friends.

They will thank you, and even if they can’t come, being invited to be involved does wonders for people.  

* BONUS!  If you want your Committee Men to go, contact (Jonathan Schultz jschultz@sc.younglife.org) and be entered into a drawing for $500 in Campership (to help keep the cost down for next year’s weekend).

Written by: Rodney Huffty (rdhuffty@gmail.com