I spent my last few days of this deer season in Alabama with Jonathon and Hubert (affectionately called Hube). Jonathon brought Hube not only because they are friends but because it was Hube’s 80th birthday and because Hube loves to hunt. He likes hunting deer and turkey but he is especially keen on bear hunting where he walks the mountains following his pack of dogs. His slender frame is strong and healthy. I ask him how he stayed that way. He replied, “Good livin’ and good eatin’.” Now I didn’t take the “good eatin’” part to infer that he was a health food junkie and neither should you. He just liked good food. Each morning Hube was quick to rise from his bed inside our camper. He always said he slept well and was always ready to leave before Jonathon and I were ready. I noticed also that while I was wrapping myself in cold gear and the latest weather beating fabric, Hube was buttoning up his flannel shirt, zipping his blue jeans, and covering his ensemble in well-worn camouflage coveralls. Add a toboggan and a pair of gloves and he was ready to sit in twenty-some degree temperatures until noon. Along with his gun, he carried his binoculars; not to mention his pocket knife and small channel locks which he carried all the time. At noon he met us for lunch and after about a two hour rest, we all went back to our stand. He did that for three days.
In between our hunts and at night I learned that Hube was a worker in his church. He had helped build the one he attends now. It’s new and different. Its music is contemporary. Its pastor (Jonathon) is not like other pastors. His style is different. Hube loves it and Jonathon loves Hube – and I do too.
You see what I have noticed as I have gotten older is that many older Christians have decided to retire from some parts of their Christian life. They are quick to say things like “I paid my dues.” Or “I’m not going to put up with that anymore.” Or “I said I’d never do that again.” Or “Those young people can take my part.” To be honest this really saddens me because just when we get to the place where we can offer the most, we decide to quit and as a result many younger folks are forced to learn on their own. I could say a lot about this but I think I’ll just put it this way. I want to finish strong. I have given my whole life for the things of God and I want to finish the job. I don’t want to stop giving of my life and of my possessions even though I may be tired or because there still may be some who criticize what I do. The reason God leaves a Christian on earth does not change with age. So if you are an older follower of Christ, fight every temptation to quit. You are more useful now than you have ever been. And maybe if you refuse to retire, God may keep you around like Hube and might even bless you with the opportunity to celebrate your 80th birthday in a tree stand.
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DISCLAIMER: The views, beliefs and opinions expressed in this article, Outdoor Truths, are those of Gary Miller and do not necessarily reflect the views, beliefs or opinions of Courageous Christian Father. Outdoor Truth’s is a syndicated article published in various newspaper and online sources and has been used on Courageous Christian Father with permission from Gary Miller. #OutdoorTruths
Gary began pursuing his desire to write a newspaper column to hunters and fishermen that would lead them to contemplate their relationship with their Creator. The column was picked up by two newspapers. After these many years now, it covers much of the country not only through several newspapers but also through regional magazines and online. His writing provided opportunities to speak to these same hunters and fishermen at events such as Beast Feasts. The results were men giving their lives to Christ.
Even though he was not raised in a hunting or fishing home, Gary has followed his heart to the water and woods since he was a child. What started on the banks of the local canal catching carp, now extends to every part of his life as he aims outdoorsmen and outdoorswomen toward Christ.