I have accepted the fact that outdoor adventures drive me. It’s not hard for me to throw a canoe on top of a vehicle, some fishing tackle and food in the back seat and take off for a few days. I have driven five hours one way for a simple overnight-er in the BWCA Wilderness. My simple lack of planning (more than once) has resulted in carving our own silverware in camp so we could cook and eat. There are those occasional stories about bears in camp, forgetting the tent, high winds, mosquito plagues and hidden lakes we couldn’t find with our compass that I have simply passed off as part of the adventure. I believe those people who tout the idea that every strength one has there is an opposing weakness. I live with those strengths and weaknesses every day and ask God to keep changing me toward normalcy.
My character flaw is that I will somehow get myself invited to your next elk hunting trip (Done that more than once) or onto your son’s fishing boat for my next adventure (as this week’s pictures will prove). The upside is I can cook well without a recipe and I come with some great camera equipment. I am fairly shameless so feel free to invite me on your next adventure.
But, things are changing. Subtle changes have taken place in me the last few years. I enjoy an early morning fire, coffee, and a nice breakfast before heading out in the woods, boat or canoe. Instead of getting up before daylight and portaging several times to an out of the way lake before breakfast I sleep in. I am content taking the time to write in a journal or take pictures of things once UN-noticed. I have sudden urges to revisit places like the sand beach on an island 8 portages into The BWCA where the walleye can be caught while wading the shoreline (I know where we hid our hand carved utensils). A certain large meadow plateau exists on the side of the mountains of Colorado surrounded by elk, mule deer, bear and mountain lion (I plan on bringing a range finder next time). I would like to ski Big Sky again and fish and white water raft the Gallatin nearby. My wife and I are talking of going back to Guatemala to build another home or visiting our sponsored child in Peru. Sometimes I even pause long enough to write or do public speaking about my outdoor adventures as well as my adventurous relationship with God. Should I ever seem too religious, hit me over the head with a solid canoe paddle (after a warning please). But I will tell you about having a practical relationship with my Creator God who does exist and wants us to know Him beyond this life and into eternity.
Someday (should it ever come), I want to teach more kids and kids at heart how to fish, hunt, camp and know God as I do. I always want to be gaining more stories than I could ever tell. Someday (when it does come) I hope you will be around to tell your stories. By then I will be able to sit still long enough to listen and enjoy.
Meanwhile here and now, I now know another great fisherman. In a couple more weeks I will meet more at Fish Camp (COFA FAll Retreat). I will see some of you there.