Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Who Needs Sleep?

That title is an homage by the song of the same name, by one of my favorite bands ever, BNL (Barenaked Ladies). The funny (not the ha-ha kind) thing is, is that I have a friend who had a few nights in a row of waking up in the middle of the night like this, and I wondered why and what that must have been like for him as he described it on his blog - and now I get to experience it.

I don't feel any physical affects really, other than a mild headache, but I definitely feel like I could not go to sleep right now if I tried. And this is pretty darn unusual for me, as I am a fairly heavy sleeper. Wendy often will ask if I know what happened in the night (kid-drama related, usually) and I rarely do.

Since it is so unusual, my next thought is that there must be a reason for it, right? So I ask God if there's a reason He woke me? Is there someone in urgent need of prayer right now? Is there something I should have done yesterday that you're getting me up to do now? Not sure I've heard an answer yet, but I decide to write this blog update and see what happens.

While I'm here, I can maybe start to tell you a little about what happened on retreat. I'm going to do a nut-and-bolts overview in this post, in an attempt to break up the whole retreat recap into bite-size, readable chunks. This is pretty general, so feel free to gloss over. I'll get into personal specifics in my next post.

We stayed at a place called Horn Creek. Very nice accommodations, great food, amazing rec center, etc.

The format for the retreat is this: Friday we arrive between 5-7 and get settled in. There's no dinner, but there are "heavy snacks." Then some worship, then one guy talks - usually testimony type stuff. Then rec time from 9-12. I know that sounds late for physical activity, but for 55 dudes, it's a great ice-breaker since we're meeting guys for the first time, and a great de-compressor, as it helps us all relax and have a little fun after the work week.

Saturday I start with a little walk in the woods and devotions before breakfast. Then we have a morning worship session, and then break out into our 3 "teams". There are 3 different 45-minute speakers in different places. So each team goes to one, then we rotate until we've heard all 3. Then lunch, then afternoon activity. This year it was a combination of Amazing Race-ish scavenger hunt/trivia game/using a compass type activity. It was really fun, but exhausting to basically be speed-hiking all over the grounds for a couple hours. After a freshen up time and dinner, we have evening worship, followed by what I call "open mic" time, which is an opportunity for any guy to share what's going on with him.

Then Sunday is devos, breakfast, worship, then the "God Stroll" - a semi-structured time alone with God. Lastly we have communion - which for most of us is the highlight of the weekend. The way we do it is that there are several loaves of bread and little communion cups of grape juice. The idea is to take a piece of bread and juice to a guy that you've seen grow over the weekend, or they've ministered to you somehow, or you need to confess something and ask for forgiveness, or something like that.

Usually that's it and we're done by 11-ish and get lunch on the way home, but this year they actually had lunch for us too, which was cool. I was home by 4:00 and spent the next 3 hours or so kind of non-stop talking to Wendy about it, through kid-managing, through dinner, etc.