Men’s Camp 2017 by Bryan van Schaik
As I drove along the road towards the site of the Men’s Camp, I overlooked a barren valley that, within the next 24 hours, would be filled and transformed, much like our hearts and lives by the end of the weekend. I knew God was going to do something massive.
Alexander Venter took us through the modern day crisis in masculinity and right back to Genesis 1:27 where we first come across the Hebrew word for male, “zakar,” which means to “remember and remind.” We were given the mandate to “remember” what God has done along the way and “remind” others of His goodness and truth. (The moment was so profound that one of the men wanted to legally change his name to Zakar).
After nights of freezing temperatures, the sun always rose over the valley and it was like an awakening of hearts and souls. Alexander shared his testimony, starting with healing from wounds between fathers and sons, with a conversation on male sexuality and masculine spirituality, and ending with a Biblical understanding of work and money.
From realizing it was time in my own life to make amends in the rocky relationship I have with my earthly dad to being restored in my hidden brokenness, God poured out His love so freely and shed His light in the darkness of men’s hearts so faithfully that we witnessed a turning point in the lives of so many men. We no longer agreed with the lie that our past disqualified us for the amazing future God has in store. We regained our true identity in Christ.
Throughout the weekend, the men of Glenridge had fun, played hard, learned much, ate lots, shared vulnerably, loved deeply, and changed profoundly, all before God and each other. White man sat next to black man, poor man ate with wealthy man, young man engaged with old man…we lived the dream of the multicultural church, in its full image and glory, gathering together, praying for each other, and building solid, Biblical foundations in each of our lives.
The sound of 200+ warriors, worshipping and praising God, went rushing through the trees of the valley that weekend. Oh what a beautiful sound! Heaven descended on us and catapulted the men of Glenridge forward with a momentum and fire in our bellies that will effectively change the dynamic of Durban and beyond.