After you spend several hours or days in the wilderness, what are some of the challenges you feel when you return to the city?
Is it time to bring some more variety into your teaching style? Jesus made the effort to vary his teaching techniques, and for good reason. He motivated his listeners to participate with him in the learning process. He wanted to move audiences to become active participants. He taught for impact.
For many youth today, their ipod or iphone is more important for them to have close at hand than anything else in their backpack. Since outdoor ministry is about first about transformation, outdoor leaders who understand the art of facilitation need to view this seeming obstacle to a “true wilderness experience”, as an opportunity to help young people see how their addiction to connectivity might be wounding their soul.
Imagine working on the International Space Station, having to live in such close proximity with a team of other people for weeks at a time. That requires a unique team. The wilderness helps groups quickly work through interpersonal and problem-solving issues to efficiently establish cohesiveness.
Do you ever struggle with making decisions? Do you tend to be indecisive in making a choice? This happens when we over-analyze, and become paralyzed by details and choices to the point where we either avoid making a decision or put it off, way to long! The wilderness is a prime training ground for making you and I a good decision maker.
Most backcountry enthusiasts follow the mantra, “leave no trace.” Like the attitudes we cop when we have to “share the trail” with someone who is doing something different than us, I was reminded on the trail this past weekend that our sin can also leave a measurable impression. Like so many spiritual metaphors, time in the outdoors is a wikipedia of object lessons. We may think we are without sin or our rebellion only affects ourselves but more likely our behavior leaves a trail “littered with loose debris.”
In my last post, “How Wilderness Education will Produce Social Innovation,” I highlighted the need young people have today for un-distracted time to think. In this post we look at practical ways wilderness education encourages & empowers social innovators by giving them time to think & dream about their calling.
Wilderness education can uncork social innovation in young people by giving them time to think.