2011 Yosemite Summit Report

The fact that I am writing my Yosemite Summit 2011 Report at the end of August that took place in May should tell you exactly WHY I do Yosemite Summit in the first place, though I’ve blogged here about that several times already:

Others have written as well about why they went to Yosemite Summit. I’ll link those another time perhaps, but you can just click through the archives. But the reality is, my life is BUSY. Don’t get me wrong – I’m doing things I love pursuing my life Mission, but if I didn’t schedule Yosemite Summit, I’d never STOP and GET AWAY and enjoy time with some guys who love God like me and just UNPLUG and enjoy nature and fellowship like you just can’t get in the hectic pace of normal life. I’m never “ready” for Yosemite Summit – it just comes, and I have to just GO. And when I get back, I have to dive in and pick up where I left off and getting this report done and a highlight video done can be a real challenge with Kidology.org to run, DiscipleTown to write and other responsibilities all while keeping my family first. (And some new and exciting things in development!)

It’s truly a gift I give myself every year that I plan to give myself for the rest of my life. AND a gift I am excited to ANNOUNCE that I am going to extend starting in 2012 to ANY MAN IN MINISTRY. No longer will Yosemite Summit be limited to children’s pastors. God has laid it on my heart that I shouldn’t be limiting this event to children’s pastors. I will explain this in more detail in a future post when registration opens and how the application process will work. But I have heard and listened and responded and God has answered your prayers, guys! On to the report.

Yosemite Summit 2011

This was the fourth Summit – and since 4 has been my favorite number since I was a kid, I anticipated it being my favorite Summit so far. I also had the advantage of three past Summits under my belt, so I am able to enjoy them even more now as I am less figuring them out and more just repeating what I’ve done in the past, though every year is unique and has aspects that make it special. This year was no exception. I especially enjoyed that this year we didn’t have to alter plans at all due to weather, which was a treat.

The newest thing this year was I made a photo journal for the guys for them to use throughout the week with color photos from past years, space to journal in and scripture to read and reflect on according to the theme of the day. Our reflective theme this year was P.A.T.H. which provided our focus for each day:

P = Peace

A = Abiding

T = Thankfulness

H = Holiness

We had a wonderful time hiking, enjoying fellowship with each other, and spending some quality time with God, the Creator of this incredible place. If you have never been to Yosemite National Park – you are truly robbing yourself of one of America’s hidden treasures. It remained hidden from the “white man” long after San Fransisco had been founded and the Ahwahnee Indians managed to divert (or at times kill) travelers over the Sierra Nevada mountains away from this this incredible valley in order to keep it a secret. It was not until the time of President Abraham Lincoln that it was finally discovered, and while Yellowstone was the first “official” National Park, Yosemite was the first land protected by a President when Abe himself declared it protected land for the people forever!

Millions travel from all over the world to behold the wonders of this relatively small valley (only seven miles in length) but only mere thousands experience the hikes that take visitors to the truly beautiful locations hidden in this gordeous place, and only Yosemite Summiteers (who stick with me on the hikes) get to see the truly hidden wonders of this magnificent park. I know the trails that many neglect and that the masses miss, and the hidden spots off the trails where one can find solitude and solace and spectacular views of God’s Creation. (I took my family to Yosemite in July and enjoyed showing my son some of “Daddy’s Spots” and Luke created a few spots of his own that we will visit again in future years!)

In case you are wondering what can be experienced on Yosemite Summit, instead of a long detailed report, as I have done in 2008, and 2009, and 2010. This year, I offer simply one word summaries of what can be experienced at Yosemite Summit and suggest if you are not one of the eight men who join me. You are truly missing out. I have no need to twist your arm. Those who join me, are the lucky ones. I already have next year almost full from the e-mails I have been getting already. So if you want to join me, you’d better sign up as soon as registration opens. It’s THAT good. I expect a waiting list in 2012. It can change your life.

Yosemite 2011: In photos and one word summaries: (Don’t Miss the Video at the End!)

ACCOMPLISHMENT

AMAZING

AWE

BEARS

BEAUTY

BRIDGES

CONTEMPLATION

DEEP THINKING ;)

FELLOWSHIP

FUN!

JOURNEY

PEACEFUL

POWER

REFRESHING

RESTFUL

UNINTERUPTED

WONDER

WORSHIP

Do these images whet you appetite for Yosemite Summit? It is truly an event that is difficult to describe, even with words or images – or even with video, but I’ll try yet again…

HIGHLIGHT VIDEO:

If you have any questions about Yosemite Summit, I invite you to ask in this thread in my forum on Kidology.org, and I’ll be happy to answer. Basic Registration on Kidology.org is free to participate, however, Premium Membership to Kidology is required to attend the Summit.

Maybe YOU will be one of us next year?

2 Responses

  1. Pat McWhorter

    Love the highlight video. Yosemite summit is so worth it. 2011 was my third year and each year the time away with God helps to energize me, refocus, and prepare me for what God is doing in my life and the things I will face. The timing may not be the best with the church calendar but it is always perfect in God’s calendar. 2011 was no different. If you can, I definitely recommend going. You will not regret it.

  2. Karl, The Yosemite Sumit was all of the above and more. I went to YS at a difficult time in my ministry and my life. I was blessed by the awe inspiring surroundings of Yosemite and equally by the wisdom of my fellow summiteers. Since the summit, some things ministry-wise have become even more difficult. I’m not sure how I would have made it through the last couple of weeks if I hadn’t gone to the summit. It was exactly what I needed, when I needed it. I came across a huge boulder this last week, but I know that God can and will use that to show His Majesty and Character and to work on MY character. Thanks again Karl!

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