Fighting the Good Fight at Zona Men Retreat

By Charles W. Short | May 16, 2023

Biblical manhood grows best in a group where “there’s no condemnation, but there’s lots of accountability.” So explained Tierce Green while speaking at ZonaMen 2023 in Williams on April 28-30.

This event is an annual retreat held at Lost Canyon, a resort-quality camp owned and operated by Young Life. This year’s retreat had the theme of “Fight Club, Some Things are Worth Fighting For.” It was attended by about 330 men representing 30 churches and ministries.

Tierce Green was the speaker for the large group sessions. He addressed the teaching of 1 Timothy 6:11-12: “… pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance and gentleness. Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses.”

Through the course of four large group sessions, the men learned practical ways to live out the model of biblical manhood and what challenges to expect as they do so.

Then in small group sessions — referred to as cabin times — the men from each church and ministry personalized those lessons with other men from their own congregations. In these small group settings, they made their churches stronger by virtue of their own increasing spiritual strength and accountability to one another.

Breakout sessions were also offered during the event. The first, “Proven Pathways to Authentic Manhood,” was instruction on how to develop a sustainable men’s ministry, which was led by Green.

The second breakout, led by Brian Bowman, pastor of Valley Life Church Tramonto, was on the topic of pornography.

“You kill pornography just like you kill any other sin,” Bowman said. He followed that up with practical biblical instruction.

A final session was an invitation for more men to join in planning next year’s event.

The event is planned by a coalition of Arizona Southern Baptist pastors and men’s leaders, led by Zach Papuga of CalvaryPHX. This group understands they can strengthen participating churches by making the men of these churches stronger. To accomplish this goal, they hold this event in the spring, and a men’s conference in the fall.

The next event will be the ZonaMen Conference, which will be held at Cross Church in Surprise on August 26. Additional information will be available soon at azsbc.org/men.

This retreat is an example of the benefits of our cooperation within the Arizona Mission Network of Southern Baptists.

The ZonaMen coalition has 6-10 different churches represented on the planning team. The event is supported by the AZMN, so every church that contributes to the Cooperative Program is helping to fund it.

The event was served by 37 Set Free church members from a variety of different Set Free congregations and coordinated by Set Free Church in Needles. A love offering was given that will partially be used to bless them in appreciation for their humble service.

Charles W. Short, a freelance writer, is pastor of Grand Community Baptist Church in Surprise.

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