STAYING CONNECTED IN GOD’S GREAT OUTDOORS
God blessed Noah and his sons, saying to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the earth. The fear and dread of you will fall upon all of the beasts of the earth and all the birds of the air, upon every creature that moves along the ground, and upon all the fish of the sea; they are given into your hands. Everything that lives and moves will be food for you. Just as I gave you the green plants, now I give you everything.” Genesis 9:1-3
There are groups that oppose hunting and even fishing because they see it as cruel to the fish and game as well as a meaningless unnecessary activity.
They feel the nature that God created for us to enjoy should be enjoyed through television, books or the internet. Certainly you can learn from these sources, but the only way you can truly understand is through personally experiencing, tasting, touching, and smelling it.
Fishing is mentioned in over 100 verses in the bible. Who were the first disciples that Jesus chose? Peter, Andrew, James and John were all fishermen. Biblical scholars believe that at least seven of the 12 disciples were fishermen. Jesus used 2 fish to feed 5,000 people.
Hunting is mentioned in the bible almost 50 times. God gave us the animals to hunt for food but he wants us to honor the game that gave their life to feed us and not be wasteful of it.
Philosophers, poets, and wise men of all times have always promoted the rejuvenating and creative qualities of a few moments of solitude spent in God’s great outdoors. Most hunters and anglers know this whether they can verbally express it or not.
Staying connected to God’s natural world is vital to many of us, and that’s as good of an excuse as any to grab the rod and reel, the gun or bow and go get connected in our great outdoors.
When I am sitting in a deer stand or turkey blind watching the night sky turn to morning. When I am out fishing and look up to see an eagle flying in a bright blue sky or hear the call of a loon. These are the times I feel closest to God.
“Reading about nature is fine, but if a person walks in the woods and listens carefully, he can learn more than what is in books, for they speak with the voice of God.” - George Washington Carver
ISN’T IT AMAZING WHAT ONE LITTLE SEED CAN DO?
Most of us are enjoying a delicious bounty of home grown tomatoes right now. Have you ever stopped to think about how amazing it is that from one little seed grows a tomato plant and from that plant many more tomatoes grow? Inside each tomato are many more seeds that can also be planted to grow many more tomatoes.
Jesus in Matthew chapter 13 tells his disciples parables about seeds. We should all be looking for opportunities to plant seeds. A seed is planted when we make a visitor to Cowboy Church feel welcome through a hand shake and a smile or invite them to set next to us instead of saving those seats for friends or family that we see all the time. A seed is planted too when we invite someone to Cowboy Church.
A seed is planted when, as a church, reach out to people in the community who are in need of help. A seed is planted through cards, phone calls, e-mails and even text messages to those who need to know you care.
A seed is planted when we use our God given gifts to touch others. Your seed may be the gift of song, playing a musical instrument, leadership, teaching, cooking, or prayer. God didn’t give you gifts to hide them but to use them to reach others for him.
A seed is planted when someone sees us act like a Christian should and wants to have what we have. A seed is planted when we boldly tell someone about Jesus
Plant seeds and someday you will meet Jesus and he will say, “Come let me introduce you to some people.” There before you is the visitor you made feel welcome, the one you invited to church, the one you helped, the one you taught. Behind them is the one you sent a card or called. To the side is the one you witnessed to and next to them is the one you didn’t even know was looking.
Behind these people are many more people stretching as far as you can see. Because of the seed you planted in one person that seed grew into many other seeds that touched someone and each one of those seeds grew to touch many, many more people.
Isn’t it amazing what one little seed can do?