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The Big Texan Challenge (Men’s Retreat Recap)

texas3Next time you’re in Amarillo, Texas, be sure to stop in at the Big Texan Restaurant on legendary “Route 66” and enjoy their famous 72-ounce steak…for free! All you have to do is down the entire slab of beef along with the shrimp cocktail, baked potato, salad, and dinner roll that comes with the meal.  “Winners” get the $72 meal charge back.

The Big Texan Challenge has rules, of course, as spelled out their web site:

  1. Entire meal must be completed in one hour. If any of the meal is not consumed (swallowed)…YOU LOSE!
  2. Before the time starts, you will be allowed to take one bite to ensure the steak is cooked to satisfaction.
  3. Once you have started, you are not allowed to stand up, leave your table, or have anyone else TOUCH the meal.
  4. You will be disqualified if anyone assists you in cutting, preparing or eating of your meal.
  5. You don’t have to eat the fat, but we will judge this.
  6. Should you become ill, the contest is over… YOU LOSE! (Please use the container provided as necessary.)
  7. If you do not win, you are welcome to take the leftovers with you (to be enjoyed off site).
  8. You are required to pay the full amount up front; if you win, we will refund 100%. If you fail to complete the challenge, you must pay the full $72 dollars.

mattclausenMen’s Retreat 2016 was a “Big Texan Challenge” moment. Twelve speakers. Twelve topics. And there were rules: twelve minutes for each speaker, 144 (12 x 12) seconds of silent reflection after each presentation, and twelve minutes of small group discussion at the end of each session.

For the well-being of the 167 men who pulled up to the table, the twelve presentations were equally divided over four chapels.  Each session focused on one aspect of “Life in 4D” (mental, physical, spiritual, relational) as modeled in our Lord Jesus (Luke 2:52).

And did we ever have a feast! No fluff. No apologies. Just steak. In short, we were challenged to:

  • In all of life, apply the four elements of the Gospel: God, man, Christ, and a response.
  • Repair faulty thinking by taking responsibility in continually connecting with God.
  • Find a man to help grow in the faith and find a man to help grow your faith.
  • Lay down the “tool belt” of life and experience the rest required to regenerate.
  • Grow a vision for life to be a whole-person Christian – start with your breakfast!
  • Use your #1 tool (personal calendar) to schedule in what you most value.
  • “Do church” by actively loving God: spend quality time, give gifts, serve, praise.
  • Rightly order your loves by first being filled by God and then overflowing with love for Him and others.
  • Loyally obey and be blessed, though the assignment might not make sense nor prove easy.
  • Use the level of God’s laser to move from pain to peace in our relationships.
  • Don’t be satisfied with serving leftovers in your primary relationships.
  • Use the card that rewards: Show responsibility and then take responsibility when you fail.

For the full meal deal, order out from links of the 12 sessions, complete with a PDF ManTalks booklet complete with bios, follow-up questions, and resources.

Grab a fork and go for it!

LINK: ManTalks Booklet (PDF)

– Bill


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