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Christian Retreats Network

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Ministry-minded Programming

By Kayla

Planning an event for your church can be difficult when you look to an outside venue to host.  What are their values?  What are the other groups like?  What is their policy on church groups?  Are kids allowed?  And then it all comes down to the actual activities you want to have.

Team building and adventure recreation activities can be found throughout the country.  You can go zip lining over the Vegas strip or escape a castle in St. Louis.  They offer the same thrills as those at Christian Retreats Network properties.  Although, they lack something.  These activities are not ministry minded, and therefore aren’t the perfect fit for church groups. 

Did you build group cohesiveness as you conquered the high ropes course?  Yes.  But if it didn’t include any biblical implications or teachings, then it didn’t reach the full potential your group needs.  So many churches have discovered the benefits of going on retreats.  For those who have explored team building at those same Christian retreat locations, it often becomes the focal point for their events. 

One verse frequently used during team building sessions is Galatians 6:2, “Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.”  We begin by having the group define the “law of Christ”.  In John 13:34, Jesus commands us to love one another.  Therefore, if we carry each other’s burdens, we are loving one another and fulfilling Christ’s law. 

Another great teaching point is 1 Corinthians 12:12, “Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ.”.  With all team building activities, it takes the skills of each person to accomplish the overall goal.  Lose one and you may not reach the end of the challenge.  Thus, groups learn to work together, both during the challenge and in personal situations after with the knowledge that we all need each other.

There is more to team building, though, than just completing a task.  One of the greatest strengths is encouragement.  The high ropes courses and zip lines can be especially frightening.  Not everyone loves heights.  Therefore, we encourage Philippians 2:4, “not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.”  You may have made it through the high ropes obstacles, but if you left your team members behind, what good did your accomplishment do?  Likewise, Romans 15 states: “We who are strong ought to bear with the failings of the weak and not to please ourselves. Each of us should please our neighbors for their good, to build them up.” and “May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had, so that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.”  Now, even tasks that you can accomplish alone are made still to work together. 

Plenty of places offer high thrills and fun times.  But if your church is looking for a deeper, more lasting impact, then consider team building programs at a Christian venue. 

Christian Retreats Network /

Based at Lake Williamson / PO Box 620 / Carlinville, IL 62626