Blaze a Trail!

4.30.2010


I don't know about you, but the nice weather we had last weekend really got me fired up for summer! I found myself looking up places to go camping around Oregon. This summer when I get a rare day off at the berry plant I want to be ready to take off and have some fun with my family. I'm thinking about kayaking, or back packing, or mountain biking....things of that nature.

But there was a phrase I kept coming across in my online searches for campgrounds and activities in nature. That phrase was "Leave no trace."
When we go into the wild now, we are being urged to "leave no trace." Leave no sign that we've been there so that the next people to come along can enjoy the outdoors the same way you do. I'm all for it. I think it is a good plan. In fact, I think it is a little sad that we must campaign so hard to get people to take care of the land. It should be common sense. We should all live by the "leave no trace" ideal when it comes to the outdoors.

But sadly, too many christians are living by the "leave no trace" policy when it comes to everyday life. We are here to make an impact. We are here to make a mark. We are here to spread the love of Jesus around which changes hearts and changes lives. But too many of us are "leaving no trace".

I wonder why?

Okay, I can hear the grumbles already. Some of you probably quit reading already because you've heard this before and here comes a big ol dose of christian guilt. That's not what I'm about. In fact if you feel guilty STOP! Don't feel guilty. No shame here. But you should ask yourself, "Why"?

If we have the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ, and we have faith in Him and we know our future is secure in heaven, why are we not the happiest, kindest, most loving people on the earth and why are we not sharing that with others on a regular basis?
Can I suggest that perhaps the good news, the saving knowledge,is just that. It is knowledge, but it hasn't penetrated our hearts.....at least not fully.

And there is other stuff at work here as well. Let's give the devil his due. He is the great deceiver. And he has been pretty effective at masking and twisting, and distorting the truths of the gospel. The world we live in, our flesh (some call it the sin nature), and the devil have all put a spin on things and the result is confusion. And much of the beauty of the gospel has been lost.

We need Jesus. We need all of Him. And we need Him to do what he said he came to do.
-Seek and save the lost!
-Heal the broken hearted and set the captive free!
-Reveal Truth! Fill us with the Spirit of Truth! (Holy Spirit)
-Give us life and life to the full! Both now and in the age to come.
-Grant us power over the evil one!
-Replace our heart of stone with a heart of flesh!
-Make us dead to sin and alive in Christ!

Friends, that is what we need. And we need it daily. At least every other day, I mean c'mon. Jesus says he stands at the door and knocks. And if anyone hears him knocking and asks him in, he will come in and fellowship with us. Notice it doesn't just roll in on a platter. There is something we must do. We need to hear the knock, open the door and invite him in. I'm not talking about the salvation prayer here. I'm talking about fellowship with our Creator. Inviting him in to do all the things He said He came to do for us. We need to deeply know, and understand his love for us. When that penetrates us at the level of our soul, then we can't help but leave our mark.

In fact, we'll probably start blazing trails!

If you want to seek God on a whole new level with some other men. I invite you to join us on the "Faith in the Field" men's campout June 25-27. You can find out more about this event and others by emailing info@faithinthefield.com

Thanks for reading!
-Scott

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Upcoming Adventures!

4.21.2010


I have a little orange Kubota lawn tractor. I love it. It is a pretty sweet little machine and makes mowing and other grounds keeping chores a snap. But to me it is more than a mowing, hauling and spraying machine....it is also my thinking seat. Really, any bonehead can sit on lawnmower seat and drive around in circles in his yard. What makes my lawnmower so unique is that I get so many sweet ideas while operating it. My mind wanders, it is relaxing- a loud noise to drown out the world, the smell of fresh cut grass and the fact that my wife thinks I'm working so hard to make her house look nice. (I forgot to mention it even has a cup holder) I really have her fooled.

Anyway, the other day I was riding along and thinking about Faith in the Field. It has been fun getting this going and to see God moving and working and stirring the hearts of other men who love the outdoors like we do. The responses we have been getting from people really is proof to us that God is in this. And that is exciting! So we want to keep this moving forward and the next place we are feeling led to go is to have some events. So here is some lawn mower seat thoughts on a couple of events...

The last weekend in June we want to have a camp out men's event at Barview Jetty campground on Tillamook Bay. The plan would be to meet at the park on Friday night. BYO tent, sleeping bags, and other camp gear, we will provide food, drinks and all associated cooking equipment. We will have some good food.

We'll have some good discussions on the things that stir our hearts as men. We are counting on God showing up and making his presence known and that will make the weekend very, very worth it.

There is also lots to do and we will leave the whole day up to you to spend it how you like. We know the power and refreshment of a day spent enjoying creation and want to make that available to you. Activities are really only limited by your imagination and what kind of gear you want to bring. If there is enough interest we could book a charter boat for a 6 hour fishing trip. We will have our boat and can take some guys crabbing on the bay. There is also clams to be had, summer steelhead to be caught in area rivers, maybe some spring chinook, elk to be scouted in the hills, ATV trails, float the Wilson, Trask, or Kilches in a kayak, pontoon or driftboat. Find an area in the hills to do some shooting. Or just explore the mountains or beaches. I love the Tillamook area because it is such an outdoorsman's paradise.

We will have an email flyer and sign up that we will send out to you if you email us and ask for one. We will probably need to cap this event depending on available campground space so if this intrests you get an email to us right away at info@faithinthefield.com

Then starting in July it is time to get serious about hunting. We will be hosting a bow shoot every Tuesday night in July. Cost will be $5 to come and punch as many holes in our 3-D targets as you can shoot. We'll have a couple of grills going with hot dogs and the trimmings. We might have a different guy tell a hunting story each night and maybe give some tips or things he's learned either about hunting or about life to kind of wrap up the evening. Should be a blast. These events would be open to anyone old enough to hunt so bring your kids or a neighbor kid out. For more info on this please send us an email at info@faithinthefield.com

Not an archery hunter and feeling left out? Let us know and maybe we'll include some clay target shooting on certain nights.

Jeff and I are looking forward to meeting more of you and making some more connections with guys who love God and love His creation.

Hope to see you at an event! I've got to go mow the lawn now :)

-Scott

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First hunt of the year!!!

4.16.2010

While the rain kept the video camera in the pack for most of the hunt, I thought I'd share what footage we did take on our first hunting trip of the year...just click the play button below to start the video. And for the story and pictures, click this link... Ifish Story and Pictures!

video

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The Real Jesus...

4.02.2010

Friends,
Happy Good Friday! I've been feeling a bit of a heavy heart lately wondering what I should blog about about this week as Easter approaches. Somehow telling a fishing or hunting story doesn't really seem to fit this week. The life, death, resurrection and acension of Jesus is too powerful of a story. Those four events really are the key, the basis of our faith. They encompass the full work of Christ. And they are ASTOUNDING. REALLY! Christianity really is THE GOOD NEWS. How often we lose sight of that.

Okay, I have to ask your forgiveness here. I know Jeff and I have quoted John Eldredge a lot. But he wrote a letter last week that is really, really good and I want to copy it here for you to read. I was reminded of the true Jesus and his good heart towards me. I think you will find it as encouraging as I did. And my prayer for all of us this week is to discover the real Jesus as we celebrate Easter this year.

From John-
Those moments when we have Jesus, really have him, those are the best moments of our lives. Those times when he seems distant or hard to find can be our most desolate. To know Jesus as he really is addresses things in us we didn't even know needed addressing. Sets us free in ways we didn't even know were possible. Touches our deepest longings in ways nothing else even comes close. It is like coming home.

And so, a true knowing of the true Jesus is the greatest thing that can ever happen to us.

I'm thinking about some of the great shifts in my life. That season years ago now when I began to understand that God loves my heart, cares for my heart, yearns for my heart. I'm not sure how it happened - how does it happen to any of us - but I had shifted my Christian life into something very outward. Going to church. Keeping God's commands. Doing good for others. The initial joy of knowing Jesus faded into something very dry. What a joy, what an epiphany it was when I came to see that he wanted friendship with me, wanted a heart-to-heart relationship. It changed everything.

Following quickly on the heels of that awakening was the realization that life is a romance. All the things I love in this world - horses running in a field, wildflowers in very high alpine meadows, fly fishing, sunlight on water, the cry of a hawk - these are all God wooing me, calling me, speaking to my heart. Wow. The realization that God does speak, speaks intimately, that I can learn to hear his voice - it absolutely changed my life.

Then there was the new season where I came to understand Jesus is a warrior, leads us in a great battle. The freedom that began to usher in is too great to quantify. There was the awakening of a whole new side to Jesus when I learned he is our healer - comes personally into the dark memories of our past and actually brings healing and restoration. He really does restore the soul. These kinds of epiphanies are absolutely priceless.

A true knowing of the true Jesus is the greatest thing that can ever happen to us.

It follows, then, that to be mistaken about Jesus is the worst thing that can happen.

My sons are off at college now; they have chosen to attend Christian colleges. It has provided an intimate look into contemporary Christianity, and it is very, very sad what most of these students hold to about Jesus. For example, the very subtle but deadly belief that, "Jesus is committed to excellence." What follows is the pressure too get your act together, to be excellent in all you do, "to glorify God." It is crushing. Performance replaces relationship. There is of course the common belief that God does not speak to us personally. But as a' Kempis said, "When Jesus does not speak within, all other comfort is empty."

Quite common is the belief that to love Jesus is to dedicate yourself to a life of service, or justice. Service then becomes tyrant, and the Christian life something very hard and barren and tiring. The need too great, our resources too limited. There is the belief that everything that happens to me is directly from the hand of Jesus. Even though he taught us to pray that his kingdom come, his will be done on earth. And when you hold that there is no enemy and no battle, that everything that happens to you is "God's will," then you begin to doubt the heart of God because he brings such terrible things into your life. It ushers in a fatal passivity, because why resist it? Nothing else can be done.

Call it the torment of misunderstanding. To get Jesus wrong is torment.

Of course, this is the battle raging through the Church. The enemy knows that if he can get us to embrace false ideas about Jesus, he can cripple us. John warns us of this in his first epistle: "Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world." He urges us to recognize "the spirit of truth and the spirit of falshood" (1 John 4:1,6). And so I have been praying,

Jesus, I ask for you. The gift of you. I ask for the real you. I pray to know you as you really are. Thank you for giving me the Spirit of truth. I pray that the Spirit of truth would expose every false thing in my perceptions of you. I pray that the Spirit of truth would dismantle the spirit of falsehood in my life. I ask you for you.

End Quote

Would you pray that with me this week? We all need the real Jesus.

-Scott

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