Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Adventure: Making the Story Worth Reading

A CSB Trip in California to ascend Mt. Whitney
Prison may not be the most sought after of locations to inspire world changing writing but it was in Bedford prison in 1675 where a mender of pots and pans penned what would become the most sold book of all time second only to the Bible. By using the solitude and darkness of the prison experience to inspire this allegory of the Christian life  John Bunyan joined the ranks of other world changers whose prison inspired works are still deeply appreciated today, men like Fyodor Dostoevsky and of course the Apostles John and Paul.

It is in fact the difficult times that provide the inspiration that turns our stories into adventures. Each of us can look back at the dark and difficult times of our lives and can see how it was in those times that we truly came to know and depend on the faithfulness of God. It is on the other side of the "valleys" that we can see that we are in fact a part of the greatest adventure story ever written. And like Christian in the Pilgrims Progress, Frodo in The Lord  of the Rings, or The Apostle Paul in his prison bound letter to the Philippians, truly great adventures require the tension that make our lives a story worth telling.

We love stories of adventure. Our hearts thrill when our hero narrowly escapes certain death and our hearts sink when the escape fails to materialize. Without these highs and lows adventure ceases to exist. In celebration of the importance of adventure in our lives we dedicated the January issue of the Brigade connection to ADVENTURE; a part of life that Christian Service Brigade has made a vital component of our ministry for more than 77 years.

David Gregg on behalf of your partners in this great adventure,
The CSB Ministry Team

Friday, January 16, 2015

The Best Battalion Trip Ever

View Pictures from the trip
View a video of the trip
I`ll never forget the trip my Battalion took this past summer. We affectionately call it the “BBTE” (the Best Battalion Trip Ever). It really was an unforgettable, once in a life time experience, but a trip of this magnitude had never been attempted by our Battalion and success was anything from certain. As the young man responsible in large part for the success or failure of this trip I had huge doubts but what the trip taught us was that no matter how daunting something may be, if God has put it in your heart to do something, press forward with full confidence knowing and trusting God to bring it to completion as he wills.

When it became clear that my first idea of a trip to the remote northern wilderness of Canada wasn't going to be feasible, we immediately saw Gods provision and direction. Our chief ranger and his family whose boys have been involved in CSB had previously lived nine years at a youth camp in the Adirondacks in upstate New York. Their connections and knowledge of the Adirondacks (ADK) made the idea of a remote, northern wilderness summer trip a possibility and because of their strong ties with the camp they graciously and enthusiastically granted our Battalion permission to set-up base-camp on one of their undeveloped, lake-front properties on Upper Saranac Lake for free.

Even with this enormous blessing, I still had doubts about the trip’s success.

Pass the Torch Leaders Conference

The Pass the Torch Leaders Conference is a North American leader’s conference for Christian Service Brigade leadership of all age groups as well as men’s ministry leaders. 

As men, we are given a mandate in 2 Timothy 2:2 to be integral in very important and significant work. As CSB and men’s ministry leaders, we are involved in the great enterprises of God, advancing His Kingdom and completing the foundational work.  Paul reminds Timothy in 2 Timothy chapter 4 that he must continue this work because soon there will come a time when truth will seem to disappear, error would seem to triumph, and men would believe in myths and fables.
If we aren’t intentional in passing on truth, the world will pass on to our boys and young men myths and fables.
Key Note Speaker
Bill paige

Battalion Revision Update - INNOV8

Leaders and Friends of CSB,

The Stockade curriculum revision (reVISION) is approaching the halfway mark of completion, and we are beginning to look at the revision of the Battalion curriculum. This adventure will be known as INNOV8 – we are seeking innovative ways to produce and develop this material used to discipling young men. It includes an overhaul of both the weekly program materials (Leaders’ Guides) as well as the Achievement materials (from Observer to the Herald of Christ). I would like to invite you to participate in this project in one or more of the following ways:

Visit Zambia With Us

In a strange cultural tension, Zambian men have a historical tradition of the "insaka" where young
men are taught by older men the traditions and skills of their people. But in modern Zambia there is very little interaction between older men and boys. Inter-generational discipleship is a foreign concept even in the church. Seeing this huge need CSB was asked by some local missionaries to come out to help train pastors. Almost every year since 2010 we have sent a team to this amazing land of beauty and promise. We believe that with the strong foundation that has been laid it is now time to invite other interested men who may have a heart for bringing the gospel and a vision for discipleship to this special part of the world.

If you have any interest in being a part of this adventure please contact us right away. 

Adventure through Internships

CSB offers some amazing internship opportunities for young men in a bunch of different fields. If you or a young man you know might benefit please follow the link below.

Internship Areas:

  •     Ministry Program
  •     Materials Writing
  •     Home office Administration
  •     On-line store management
  •     Special Initiatives/ Projects
  •     Software Development/Web & Graphic Design
  •     Camping ministry

Learn more about our internships ...

Living through the Blizzard

Record breaking snow brought the Buffalo region to a standstill right as our CSB board meeting was about to take place in November. Men only 2.5 miles from each other couldn't reach each other and were literally trapped in their homes and hotels. 

Working with CSB is always an adventure but that fact was vividly illustrated as the notorious lake effect burst into the Buffalo area so quickly that many people were trapped in their cars.

And almost as quickly as it came it was gone. By Monday the temperatures were up above 60 degrees and the snow was almost completely melted.

This video will give you a sense for how fast the snow was moving

You can see pictures here from some of the staff in buffalo.

View a gallery of amazing pictures by clicking on the picture