An avid hunter went on safari with his wife and mother in law. One evening, while deep in the jungle, the wife woke up and found that her mother was gone. Rushing to her husband's tent, she told the hunter that her mother was missing and insisted on them both trying to find her.
The hunter picked up his rifle and started to look for his mother in law. In a clearing near the camp, they came upon a chilling sight: the mother in law was backed up against a huge boulder, and a large lion stood facing her. The wife cried to the husband, "What are we going to do?"
"Nothing," said the husband. "The lion got himself into this mess; let him get himself out of it."*
All jokes aside, I’m looking forward to this wonderful event, complete with Fish, Ribs, Kielbasa, Alligator, Venison, Buffalo, Bear, and much more. More importantly, I am looking forward to hearing our speaker for the evening, Sammy Gilbreath, as he shares insights from a lifetime of hunting and fishing with his family.
By and large, my own family enjoys hunting. My father in law and mother in law both have done a lot of coon hunting down through the years. I myself enjoy hunting, as do my children. My boys are both avid hunters; as is my son-in-law. I have even taken my entire family on hunting trips before.
I have done this because I firmly believe that hunting and fishing, when undertaken in a lawful and ethical manner, are wholesome activities that help to produce responsibility within young men and women. For this reason, I have tried to use hunting, fishing, and other such activities to instill values within my own children. (I guess I have just long subscribed to the old adage that “Boys who are raised to hunt and fish don’t generally grow up to mug old ladies.”)
How does hunting help to instill values in children? I would answer that most everyone knows the story of how David slew Goliath with a sling and five smooth stones. But not many know the rest of the story. When David was auditioning, as it were, for the job to fight Goliath (in I Samuel 17), he told King Saul how he had earlier killed both a lion and a bear while protecting his father’s sheep. He was confident that God had used these experiences to prepare him for his forthcoming fight with Goliath, which he would now win as well.
For my part, I have learned a lot from hunting down through the years. A deer stand or a turkey blind is often a peaceful place to allow one to think about things. In truth, I have even written a sermon or two while sitting in the woods with a deer rifle or a shotgun or else a bow and arrow in my lap.
Steve Chapman, husband of Annie and famed recording artist, has written several books on lessons learned from a lifetime of responsible hunting. He has a wonderful blog full of insight with which I can relate. Check it out at: http://www.steveandanniechapman.com/category/outdoor-insights/.
But I have also used hunting and outdoor activities with my children to help instill values within them – values such as the importance of bonding with one’s peers, of assuming responsibility for one’s actions, and of practicing genuine stewardship over God’s creation. I believe I have been successful with these things through outdoor activities together with my family.
And I also believe that Dr. Paige Patterson, President of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas, and an accomplished big game hunter, is right when he says that whenever we teach a child to hunt, a number of important sequences follow. He delineates these in his article titled HUNTING’S ULTIMATE HAPPINESS, which can be found online at: http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=
In a day and age of increasing irresponsibility within both society and the home, Dr. Patterson argues that proper instruction in the handling and use of firearms for hunting purposes can be a positive quality in the life of a maturing adolescent. I wholeheartedly concur.
**NOTE: If this link to Dr. Patterson's article does not work, try a simple Google search for the article title with Dr. Patterson's name.