I have been very quiet on this site this year as this will be my first post since the new year. This year started off with a bang as I began my counseling internship in the final phase of my Masters program with Liberty University. It has been a huge experience so far. Needless to say, I’ve been a little busy with that.
The big thing that has been going on however, is about take place tomorrow. What began as a conversation over breakfast many months ago has led to the development and now launch of our first Wild at Heart modeled Boot Camp, called The Anvil Men’s Boot Camp. God put it on my heart well over a year ago, that it was my turn to begin seeking and rescuing the hearts of men. As time has gone by and as I began to counsel with people, I realized that so many of the problems within families stem from the father in some way, whether he is abusive, completely absent, or present but not present. This pattern is destroying marriages left and right and wounding children by the score.
The need was there, but what would I do about it. In counseling, many of my clients are women, so getting men to come sit down one-on-one is going to be a challenge. I realized how huge it was for me to step out of my element and go the Wild at Heart Boot Camp in Colorado a couple of years ago. We were encouraged to take this message back home. In the last year, I got to know a few other men who had a similar desire. 2 sages and a peer.
The conversations began. My peer, friend, and brother, Matt and I started small with a men’s small group where we began to lead men through the Wild at Heart message. It became evident that something bigger was needed. I met a man named Butch just by happenstance, and we decided to have breakfast and the conversation began. He is a sage who has a huge passion for men’s ministry as well. The idea was born.
I pulled in another brother and sage, Steve, who also attended Wild at Heart and is immersed in their ministry as well. Conversations began to happen and we decided that it was something we had to do, sooner, rather than later. Only way to learn how was to dive in and give it try.
So that’s where we stood. We knew what we wanted to do, we found the site, and now we needed the men. Conversations with my friend and pastor, Tim, brought me to begin leading some of our men’s Wednesday night Bible studies. Again, all of this is out of my element, but I jumped in.
I have to admit, we were skeptics at first. We knew we would start small and opened it to just 12 attendees. There was skepticism as to whether we would get 6 or 8. A few weeks later, I’m calling Butch and saying telling him we need a 2nd cabin. Now with a day to go, we have a 19 men heading to Upstate South Carolina for 4 days with God. Unreal the response we’ve had and we have more waiting in the wings for next time.
So these last few months in 2017 have been all about planning this event out. Writing content and coordinating everything. To see it all come together has been so huge. I can tell God has been at work in this and we’ve made it a point to surrender it all over to Him and not let this become about any of one us. We know that if a group a men get together like this, God is certain to show up and He already is.
I knew there would be opposition, but the Enemy has been relentless in his attacks, which tell us even more that we are moving in the right direction. My family has been attacked relentlessly in the recent weeks. Stating with physical problems from a baseball to my face, a concussion one week and then a diabetic seizure for one my sons, a large allergic reaction for my daughter, and a stomach bug that hit my oldest son. All of this has put a huge strain on my bride’s heart and mine as well. We spent a lot of time holding each other and just letting the tears flow. We knew what it was though. Satan was trying to use all of this take us out…to stop this weekend from happening.
We have flipped it on him and surrendered it all to God. The suffering is hard, but nothing in comparison to Christ and we know this. We just turned to prayer and have had an army of prayer around us, which has pulled us through all of that in ways we couldn’t have imagined a few years ago.
So now we’re ready. All the content is written. Final details are being nailed down and tomorrow we head to the mountains. We’ll have some great times of learning and fellowship and times of one-on-one with God, and some adventure on the Wild and Scenic Chattooga River, yes where they filmed Deliverance. Hopefully no banjos on the shoreline. Just kidding.
We’re just so pumped about this. About the men willing to take the risk to head into the wilderness and we sit in eager anticipation and expectation of God’s goodness. I know He is up to something big here and can’t wait to see what happens in the lives of these men, who range from 20 to their 60s, and then how their families, our church family, and community is impacted. It’s all about God and He gets all of the glory here.
As Iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. Proverbs 27:17