The Need for Adventure

May 12, 2014

in Uncategorized

I spent the first four days of May at a men’s event put on by Boot Camp Northwest. The long weekend is patterned after the Wild at Heart Boot Camps done by Ransomed Heart Ministries. It was an awesome time of leaning and growth for me. It also gave me an interesting look at men and how they think. I had a chance to talk with many men during our free time. Much of what I heard will show up in here over the next weeks.

One statement made by a speaker grabbed me – “Bored men seeking adventure pick fights and get in trouble.” This is so true! 

I have written about the need for men to take risks. Adventure is much the same, but the risks need not be dangerous. Challenging ourselves is risky, and it feels good. Even when we fall short of the challenge, trying feels good. 

On top of the world! © Paul H. Byerly

An example:

During one quiet time, I climbed part way up a hill to be alone. I am out of shape, and a short climb left me panting. The next day during extended free time, I decided to challenge myself. I chose a hill I was sure I could do, and then started up the somewhat larger hill next to it. It was only a two mile hike, but it was a climb of 600 feet on rather steep, loose shale hills. I had to stop far more often than I want to admit, but I made it to the top. I felt so alive when I “conquered” that hill. I also felt like God was there beside me as I looked around. (The image is a picture I shot near the top.) On the way down, I passed a hole in the hillside which was likely a cougar den. I picked up a few rocks and walked away as quietly as possible. I was not in real danger, but it was a rush to be there.

Your husband needs adventure (same for your son(s)). He needs to challenge himself. God put these needs in him, and when the needs are not met one of several things happens:

  • Something destructive comes out somewhere. 
  • Suppressing his natural desires results in suppressing other parts of himself.
  • Denying his inner self leads to depression.
  • He “medicates” with something sinful or harmful. 

God made him for adventure, and he will never be the man God intended him to be without adventure. A wise wife encourages her man to have a good amount of sane adventure. 

~ Paul – I’m XY, and I need adventure to feel right about myself.

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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Dr Richard Norris May 12, 2014 at 1:55 am

Sounds like a good bootcamp Paul. Where in the US was it. It looks pretty arid.

I could use an adventure or two to stoke my furnace. It’s so easy to get caught up in the mundane of routine. A nice adventure or two reminds us we are alive.
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Paul Byerly May 12, 2014 at 10:44 am

It was a Washington Family Ranch (http://bit.ly/1hHJzPl) in the high desert part of central Oregon. About the only other thing out there is cattle ranching.

It had been way to long since I did something like that.
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Rosemary May 12, 2014 at 9:57 am

The good news for me is that my husband and I have nearly equal amounts of adventurousness (although it sometimes expresses itself in different ways). This makes us great traveling companions, because we do not find ourselves in situations where one is pushing for something the other thinks is too dangerous, or where one is too timid to do anything interesting. I don’t mean that we always agree or that we have identical wishes, but our comfort zones largely overlap. Each of us is willing to stretch the comfort zone a bit (or sometimes to dial back a bit) so that we can share great experiences. If anyone is letting their own timidity hold their spouse back, I would recommend taking a deep breath, stepping back, and saying, “Have fun, honey. Take lots of pictures.” As you put it, “sane adventure” is a wonderful part of life.
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Paul Byerly May 12, 2014 at 10:46 am

Absolutely right. Trying to push your spouse too far hurts the marriage, and trying to restrain your spouse to much hurts them and leads to resentment.
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Rebekah May 12, 2014 at 11:46 am

I’d be interested in your suggestions for adventures/ challenges for young boys? I’ve got a passel of boys, and sometimes those destructive behaviors sneak out and I know we are overdue for some serious man activities. I’m sure my husband has some ideas for me too…

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Paul Byerly May 15, 2014 at 10:16 am

That is far more difficult than it use to be. Some many places have become so about safety there is no adventure left. As far as organised groups it will depend a great deal on the leaders.
Laser tag is a blast – and not too costly if you have one near you. Paint ball and Airsoft are also good. Camping an fishing trips are always great. A day hike is good too. Canoeing, white-water rafting, shooting rapid in an inner tube.
Young Life has fantastic camps with a great mix of spiritual instruction and full on adventure. Of course they are high dollar. Other summer camps are hit and miss, but there are some great low cost ones.
For older kids a week long mission trip to a third world country is an exceptional adventure, and a life changing event for most.
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Danielle Barton March 30, 2015 at 4:40 pm

Probably weird but my hubby doesn’t seem to do/be into much adventure. I’d love to encourage that in his life! I need ideas! I read your ideas for boys… Got any for men that that don’t do anything currently? :) Tia!

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Paul Byerly April 2, 2015 at 10:59 am

There are always those who don’t fit the usual boxes.
My first thought is way he does not do much in terms of adventure. Perhaps it’s how God made him, but odds are he’s got some things in his past which limit him to some degree.
Any change is best done by pushing the current limits just a bit. Encourage him to move a little past his comfort zone. If you have a guess he might like something, that’s a good direction to go, if not, try various things.
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