Forced Organic Conversation

Each year, our church leaders take a 2-day trip to New Braunfels, TX. We spend some time golfing, some time praying, some time in sessions with a guest speaker, and a lot of time eating. But ask any of those guys what their favorite part of the trip is, and they'll tell you "the bus ride." 

We drive 4 hours each way on a charter bus, and it's a great time to connect with other guys who are pulling in the same direction. There are some serious discussions, but a ton of laughter. 

I love the leadership at our church. These guys are serious about their faith, and are the epitome of servant leadership. But they're also just plain great guys who know how to have a great time. I love watching some of our 70-year-old elders pulling practical jokes on some of the younger guys. I love to listen to them tell stories about each other, just trying to see who gets embarrassed first. These guys are the real deal, and I love serving with them. 

We could "retreat" a lot of places closer to home. But that would cause us to miss the true value of the retreat. If we retreated only 1 hour away, connection with leaders would have to be forced or programmed. Otherwise, guys would be tempted to head to their cabins and sleep or read a book. The bus forces organic communication, which seems like an oxymoron but isn't. We provide a catalyst that we know will create the reaction we desire, and then we let it happen. And, it's the most critical part of our retreat.