Why are you a “Christian” club? Why aren’t you just a generic club or a club without a title that potentially offends prospective members?

We are a Christian club because our purpose is:

  • To share the joy and experience of hunting and fishing with other Christian Sportsmen
  • To encourage Christian fellowship
  • To challenge men and women to establish and maintain a personal relationship with Jesus Christ
  • To encourage serving the Lord Jesus
  • To encourage fellowship in a local body of believers that teaches the Bible is literally true

There are many clubs/organizations that focus on a particular animal or cause (e.g., Ducks Unlimited, Pheasants Forever, The National Wild Turkey Federation, The NRA, U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance, etc.). We choose to focus on hunting, fishing, shooting, and similar activities in a Christian atmosphere. We are not ashamed of the gospel (good news) of Jesus Christ and that we are his disciples. We are not going to attempt to hide who we are just because it might offend some who are perishing (destined for hell because they do not belong to Jesus) or Christians who are ashamed to let people know that they belong to Jesus. On 1/19/09, the officers unanimously agreed that we should be up-front about who we are and that sportsmen who are put off by our name would also be put off by the things that we do (hold devotionals and pray) and not do (gamble, cheat on our spouses, etc.) even if we changed our name to a more generic one, such as The Hill Country Sportsmen’s Club.

What types of events does FCS host?

We presently host dozens of quality and affordable family events year-round throughout the state including, but not limited to:

  • A 24-hour Sporting Clays Shoot
  • A Banquet
  • A Ministry Event (Wild Game Dinner)
  • Dove Hunts (self-guided)
  • Duck and Goose Hunts (inland and coastal; guided (both) and self-guided (duck))
  • Fishing Trips (inland and coastal; chartered and self-chartered)
  • Hog Hunts
  • Meetings
  • Sporting Clays, Skeet, and 5-stand Shoots
  • Sporting Clays Tournaments
  • Upland Bird (chuckars, pheasants, and quail) Hunts (guided)

We have hosted many other events, including:

  • A Texas Hunter Education course
  • A Turkey Shoot (to win turkeys)
  • A Varmint Hunt (bobcats, coyotes, and foxes)
  • Camping Trips
  • Canoe/Kayak Trips
  • Concealed Handgun License (CHL) Classes
  • Dart (archery) Shoots
  • Deer Hunts (self-guided)
  • Flurry, Trap, and Wobble Trap Shoots
  • Hunting and Gathering (shopping) Trips
  • Laser Tag Games
  • Nights at the Races (car)
  • Promotions
  • Rabbit Hunts
  • Sheep Hunts
  • Shooting Classes
  • Shooting Range Shoots

Do I have to be a member of or attend a church and/or be a Christian in order to participate in FCS events or join FCS?

No. Anyone can attend FCS events. Anyone is welcome to join FCS providing that he or she has expressed a desire to be a member by completing an FCS Adult Membership Application and paid a membership due. The primary reason that we have membership dues is to share expenses. These include liability insurance, web hosting, our domain name, photocopying, postage, DVD purchases, miscellaneous office supplies, filling up the FCS propane tank, etc. Membership also instills a sense of belonging and commitment. We appreciate it when people join the Club and when members renew their memberships.

Is there a minimum number of events in which I must participate?

No.  However, participation is strongly encouraged.  The more that a person participates the more likely it is that he or she will feel that he or she is a part of the organization.  It is also more likely that he or she will develop friendships.  It’s a totally different thing to shoot sporting clays with a bunch of strangers than it is to shoot with a bunch of friends, for example.

Do I have to be an experienced angler/hunter/shooter in order to participate in FCS events?

No. We have all types of sportsmen at FCS events, from novices to veterans. We delight in teaching others what we know. However, some events require a certain amount of familiarity with techniques in order to be successful. For example, it would be better for someone who has never shot to learn how to hit clay targets before trying his hand at dove hunting. It would also be better for a novice fisherman to learn how to plastic worm fish before signing up for a guided bay fishing trip where the bait will be croakers and/or piggy perch (which have a bite similar to a bass hitting a plastic worm).

Do I have to possess a lot of equipment in order to participate in FCS events?

No. Many FCS members and guests have extra equipment and would be happy to loan it to another member or guest with adequate notice and if it is available. All events on the “FCS Upcoming Events” section of the Main Page have a contact person listed. Contact him or her if you need to borrow equipment. Of course, equipment must be returned clean and in good working order. If you break or lose something that you borrow you must repair or replace it. Also, only one shooter shoots at a time at our sporting clays and skeet shoots, so it is not necessary for everyone to have a shotgun (one shotgun will work for an entire squad).  However, for some events, such as dove hunting, each hunter will need a shotgun.

Can I bring my spouse and children to FCS events?

Absolutely! We are very family-friendly. Most of our events are designed to maximize fellowship. Sporting clays and skeet shoots, shooting range shoots, dove retreats and hunts, meetings, dinners, promotions, and ministry events are excellent events to take families to. Our sporting clays and skeet shoots and shooting range shoots are great events for men, women, and children to learn how to shoot or to improve their skills. For hunts, we try to pair new hunters up with veterans so that the veterans can assist the newbies. Guided deer/hog/sheep hunts, goose/duck hunts, upland game bird hunts, and chartered fishing trips are less family-friendly due to space limitations and gear requirements. Also, some outfitters and guides charge a “spectator fee.” If you bring your children please closely supervise them for their safety and the safety of others.

Why do you not focus on children?

Our focus is, and has always been, on adults (hence the name – “Sportsmen”).  We encourage members and guests to bring their children, other minor relatives, and other minors who are not related to them to FCS events, as long as they supervise them.  However, our focus is on adults who can pay their own way.  We have a ministry fund that is based solely on donations.  Our ability to pay a child’s sporting clays fee, for example, is limited.  Our ministry fund has paid for groups of children to shoot clay targets four times.  If the donations dry up, so does our ability to offer to pay for a child’s shoot.  We have done shoots with two churches (one twice) and Kids Outdoor Zone (KOZ).  We also have helped Operations Orphans and Cross Trail Outfitters with donations of clothing, ammo, money, etc.  The above organizations, along with Hunt with Heart, all focus on children.  If you’re wanting to be involved in a Christian ministry that focuses on children, we encourage you to consider becoming involved with one or more of them.

Why do some FCS events cost so much/cost so little?

We try to find a balance between expensive and inexpensive events.  Through years of experience, we have learned that inexpensive hunting and fishing trips often result in poor harvests (you get what you pay for) and in frustrated participants who will not return.  We prefer to pay a standard landowner/outfitter/guide rate to have a better chance of success.  Additional expenses often include tips, game cleaning fees (for those who wish to have their game cleaned), motel rooms, gas, and food.  But we also understand that not everyone can afford expensive events; therefore, we offer events with minimal costs.  At many events we are able to cut expenses by carpooling, sharing motel rooms, camping, and cooking out.

Many of our events are very affordable. The only required expense for our self-guided hog hunts is each hunter must bring corn to replenish the corn that the landowner threw out for him and shared gas and food.  Our self-chartered bass fishing trips usually only involve shared gas, a shared boat launch fee, and eating out one or two meals.  Our self-chartered bay fishing trips usually involve only shared gas, shared bait, and eating out.  Our self-guided duck hunts usually involve only shared gas and food and eating out one or two meals.  The cost for meetings is an optional small fee for shared food (usually around $8.00 – $10.00).  A day at the shooting range goes for $15 (not including a $20.00 lifetime range card).  A round of skeet goes for $6.00 – $10.00 and a round of sporting clays goes for $23.00 – $29.00.  Dove hunts are $75.00 a day and up.

Our day lease deer/hog, guided duck, and guided upland bird hunts; 24-hour sporting clays shoots; and chartered bay and bass fishing trips are held with reputable and experienced landowners, outfitters, and guides.  These events are more expensive but we do a lot of research to find the best deals for our bucks.  However, be aware that we do not offer a guaranteed harvest for any of the hunts or fishing trips that we host.

We are aware that expensive events usually are less well attended, but we are also aware that inexpensive events may be well attended one year but few people will attend them again because the results are often poor.

Hunting and fishing have become big business in Texas and across the country.  For example, years ago many farmers and ranchers would pay to have hunters remove hogs from their property.  Now most farmers and ranchers charge around $200/weekend for hunters to hunt their pigs.  Some even charge by the pound or the length of the tusk!  For the most part, the days of shooting a trophy animal for free are long gone.

Why do some events require an RSVP and payment in advance?

Many outfitters and guides do what they do for a living.  When they book with a party they are possibly turning down other hunters or fishermen who want to hunt or fish on the same day.  To ensure that the party actually does show up, many outfitters and guides require not only an RSVP but also partial or full payment in advance.
Outfitters also will hire/schedule guides based on the size of the party.  For example, if we tell an outfitter that we will have eight duck hunters, for example, he will probably split the group between two guides.  But if two don’t show up then he’s out money because he could have had one guide handle the group of six.  Consequently, many outfitters will charge you for exactly the number of hunters you promised them.  If you tell them that you will have eight hunters and only six show up then they will still charge you for eight.
We have had this happen at least three times and it will happen no more.  So even if the outfitter does not require a deposit we often do as an incentive to those who signed up (people are less likely to cancel if they have skin in the game) and as protection for those who do show up (so they don’t have to pay for the spot of someone who canceled at the last minute or didn’t show up).
We realize that not everyone agrees with this philosophy.  That’s fine.  We’ll be happy to give you the outfitter(s) or guide(s) name and contact information and you can schedule your own trip with him.  But if you’re going to go on an FCS trip that involves an outfitter/guide, expect to pay a deposit.  And if you don’t pay your deposit, then expect that we will cancel your RSVP.  We realize that this might sound harsh, but irresponsible and inconsiderate behavior on the part of a few has forced us to have to take this stand.

Why do different people send me emails about FCS events?  I only want Randy to contact me!

Since 1991 FCS has used a variety of officers to perform the work of the club.  The most that we have had serving at one time is ten and the fewest that we have had was three.  Although Randy, by far, has had and continues to have the most communication with current and future club members, our vice presidents and event coordinators also communicate to our members/guests on occasion.

While Randy is flattered that some people think that he should be doing all the communication, the reality is that is not possible for an organization of our size that is run by unpaid volunteers.  Back in 1991, we had the wisdom to develop different jobs because we recognized that one man could not do it all.  This is true now more than ever with over 80 events on our calendar for 2019 and over 290 members.

It is Randy’s goal to continue spreading the work of the club out over more and more people so if he gets hit by a bus the club will continue without a hitch.  Therefore, you will continue to hear from officers other than Randy.

Does FCS have a deer, hog, dove, etc. season or year-round lease?  If not, where can I find a lease?

We have discussed having a Club season or year-round deer lease and even buying deer hunting property on more than one occasion, but the obstacles have always been insurmountable, including lack of funds, how to handle land or lease payments, what to do if a member wants to sell his share of the land or lease, maintaining the property, how to handle guests and other rules that will need to be developed and enforced, and the need for a lease manager.  Every time that we have discussed this we simply have not had enough members willing to pay the kind of money that was involved.

We are predominantly a bird hunting club.  Probably less than 30 of our members are on deer leases.  We’ve also always been a low-end (cost-wise) club – the vast majority of our members are on a tight budget.
Other factors that we’d have to tackle are whether we’d make this a club within the club (a subset), where, for example, $2500 gets you in the club, with extra events that the deer hunters get to do (e.g., duck, quail, and dove hunts, sporting clays shoots, fishing trips, etc.).  If that’s the route that we took, we’d be a very small club.  We have had and continue to have Club members join leases together but that is far from a Club lease, where any member could hunt at the lease.  Presently, the Club officers are not interested in fundamentally changing our membership requirements and focus.

For 2019 and 2020 FCS had a dove lease near Bartlett that was open to FCS members.  The cost was $250 for both halves of the season.  Contact Mike Walsh if you have any questions at duxmn@austin.rr.com or 512-560-7001.

If you are looking for a lease, here are five websites that advertise leases:

And here are six Facebook Groups that advertise leases (you have to join the groups):
  • Texas Hunting & Deer Leases
  • Texas Hunting and Deer Leases (they ripped off the first site’s name)
  • Texas Hunting Leases and Day Hunts
  • Texas Hunting Leases and Outfitters
  • Texas Hunting Guides & Outfitters
  • Texas Cheap Hunts and Fishing (this site tends to focus on day hunts)

Where do you recommend that I go to hunt hogs over a weekend?

The two places that I recommend (with some reservations) are:
This is a large scale operation.  They hunt hogs there 365 days a year on 300 acres.  The hogs don’t get shot out because they import them (buy them from trappers).  Some hunting is done in the evenings from stands until 9:30 PM (bring two sacks of corn), but most of the hunting is done via small group stalks (of no more than five hunters).  They have an air-conditioned bunkhouse and good meals in their lodge.  There are a lot of exotics that can be hunted, but of course, you’ll pay a lot for them.
Probably their best deal for two guys is their buy one get one free special ($399).  This includes lodging and all meals.  It does not include tips.  They strongly recommend a $50 tip per hunter.  It also does not include the cost of cleaning the hogs, which is basically $50 for a hog up to 50 lbs. and $1/lb. above that (so a 150 lb. pig is $150).  They do not allow you to clean your own pigs because the “TPWD recommends only experts clean them” (which is true, but is really an excuse for them to make more money).
FCS got a considerable discount by doing their “ministry hunts.”  Randy had to round up at least 12 hunters in order to do it and we could only hunt on Sundays – Tuesdays or Mondays – Wednesdays.  At first, it wasn’t hard to get that many hunters, but over time as their prices on cleaning hogs kept going up less of our guys were interested.  The last time that Randy tried to organize a hunt there he only got six commitments and that was a year after our best hunt there.
Pros – Lots of pigs.  On our best hunt, 15 hunters killed 25 pigs.  It’s not a guaranteed kill, but it’s about as close to it as you can get.  Decent bunkhouses and showers.  Good meals.
Cons – You don’t get to hunt at night for long.  If you bring slop there is a small chance that they’ll actually put you at the stand where they put your slop out.  Randy’s advice is to leave it in your truck and put it out when you drive to your stand.  If you shoot a really big pig you will have to take out a small business loan.  They do not allow calibers smaller than .243/6mm, nor do they allow buckshot and more than three shells in your chamber and magazine.  (They don’t want a guy with an AR to shoot 10 hogs and then discover that he can’t pay for them all.)
If they don’t want to go bow hunting then stop reading – it’s bow hunting only.
Our second FCS hog hunt was there.  Four of us killed one pig and Randy missed a running shot at a medium-sized hog.  This hunt was more than 20 years ago, so he’s hesitant to give more details as they could have significantly changed.  He remembers a bunkhouse.  He thinks that the hunt costs $150 for the weekend, but he’s sure it’s significantly more now.  They had to cook their own meals.  The hunters saw a lot of hogs, but the hogs were very reluctant to come to the corn that they hunters had put out within their bow range.  The ranch and owner have a good reputation.  The only reason that we didn’t do another hunt there is because we have few bow hunters.  Randy started looking for ranches that also allowed guns.  From a participation standpoint, he’d rather have 15 gun hunters than four hunters at a bow-only ranch.

How do I get an event placed on the FCS Calendar?

Supporting FCS members can email their requests to Randy Rowley FCS President randywrowley@gmail.com for consideration.  Reasons for refusal to post include but are not limited to, not having an FCS member who is willing to lead the event and lack of interest in some aspect of the event.  For example, our self-guided hog hunts have been popular and well attended.  However, if a supporting member wants Randy to put a muzzleloader-only self-guided hog hunt on the FCS calendar he would post it as an Any-weapon self-guided hog hunt because to his knowledge only a couple of men in the Club own muzzleloaders.

Agreeing to post an event also depends on the difficulty in planning the event.  For example, if a supporting member wants Randy to put a mule deer hunt in North Texas on the calendar then he will have to plan the trip (big game hunts are his responsibility).  As he’s never gone on a mule deer hunt it would require extensive planning.  He’ll then have to weigh whether it would be worth 40 or more hours of his time to plan a trip that probably no more than four guys would go on.  The best way to ensure that an event is placed on the calendar is to also state that you will plan, coordinate, and lead the event.

In order for an event to happen an FCS member must lead it.  If only one FCS member attends he or she must lead the event (a guest cannot lead an event).

I’ve noticed that FCS heavily emphasizes following the game rules.  Why the emphasis?

Romans 13:1-5 exhorts us “Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established.  The authorities that exist have been established by God.  Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves.  For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong.  Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority?  Then do what is right and you will be commended.  For the one in authority is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for rulers do not bear the sword for no reason.  They are God’s servants, agents of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer.  Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also as a matter of conscience.”

Christianity and obeying laws, including game laws, go hand and hand.  When we break a game law we’re rebelling against God.  A Christian club that is lax on game laws is a dishonor to God and a poor witness.  Therefore, we expect all game laws to be followed on FCS events in full.  Hunters and fishermen who deliberately and flagrantly break game laws will be asked to leave the FCS event that they are on and will be reported to the game warden.

Is FCS affiliated with a church?

No. We assist local churches by providing Christian fellowship and reaching sportsmen in ways that churches cannot.

Who can submit prayer requests, classified ads, articles, stories, devotionals, recipes, etc. for publication on the FCS website?

We invite articles, classified ads, hunting and fishing stories, members’ profiles, product and service reviews and recommendations, and safety tips from supporting FCS members. We invite devotionals, praises, and prayer requests submissions from all FCS members; however, we reserve the right to edit and refuse to post the material.

We can only use original submissions unless the author’s work is not copyrighted. No material on our website may be reproduced in print or electronically without Randy Rowley’s written or electronic permission. Members can email their requests/documents to Randy at randywrowley@gmail.com. For classified ads, include a lot of details and submit pictures (a picture is worth a thousand words). Please research your used item on https://www.ebay.com/ or http://austin.craigslist.org/ (for general items) and www.gunbroker.com, www.gunsamerican.com, or www.texasguntrader.com (for guns and accessories) and find out what the going rate is.

Why do your Bylaws and other web pages say that FCS is non-political, yet you have political posts (e.g., opposing gun control, opposing hunting restrictions, etc.) on your website?

FCS is not a political organization. Politics does nothing to further our primary purpose “to encourage Christian fellowship opportunities for people who like to hunt, shoot, and fish” and only accomplishes division. When we distributed something political, including political jokes, people sometimes became offended. We lost a member, came extremely close to losing another member, lost a guest who probably would have joined, and have had a lot of heated words exchanged over politics. Therefore, on 10/27/05, the active Club members approved added to our Bylaws that FCS is a “non-political” organization.

However, our purpose and Bylaws do not prevent us from encouraging everyone to vote for pro-gun/pro-hunting candidates. We just won’t name a particular candidate or party. Nor do they prevent us from letting our members and potential members know of political attacks on hunting, fishing, and guns (if we did not possess guns our opportunities to hunt would be very limited and we would no longer be able to shoot clay or other targets). Call it self-preservation.

Who can buy FCS Gear?

Anyone can buy FCS Gear at any time. FCS Gear can be mailed to your address or are available at Club Meetings and many other FCS events. For all FCS Gear purchases except the Magellan Fishing Shirts (the details are explained on the FCS Gear web page) please make your check out to “FCS” and mail it to Kevin Wall, FCS Treasurer, 205 Covala Drive, Cedar Park, TX, 78613 along with your order. Please do not send cash. If you would like to have an item(s) shipped to you please indicate the address that you would like it (them) shipped to and include in your check enough money to cover the cost of postage and a large envelope (see the FCS Gear web page for specific postage and envelope amounts).

How do I get added to the FCS email distribution list?

Simply ask Randy Rowley to add you at randywrowley@gmail.com. You can unsubscribe at any time.

What is the difference between an FCS supporting adult member and an FCS adult member?

FCS supporting adult members are active in their membership dues. Supporting FCS adult members have the following rights:

  • Make amendment proposals to the FCS Bylaws, Statement of Faith, Annual Calendar of Events, and/or Annual Fiscal Year Budget;
  • Participate in all supporting FCS member discussions and votes; and
  • Check out (borrow) FCS equipment items, videos, and books.

Supporting FCS members will have their articles, classified ads, hunting and fishing stories, jokes, links, members’ profiles, pictures, poems, product and service reviews and recommendations, recipes, safety tips, and useful information for sportsmen submissions posted on the FCS website. All FCS members will have their devotionals, praises, and prayer requests submissions posted on the FCS website. FCS members who are presently not supporting the Club do not have the rights that supporting FCS members have. All FCS adult members can purchase FCS Gear at any time.

What do I need to do to join FCS?

See How to Join.

How do I renew my FCS membership?

See How to Renew.

Why did the FCS President not attend such and such event?

Randy is flattered that many of you want him to attend a specific event.  FCS events are the heart and soul of FCS and they, along with spending time with his wife, kids, grandkids, and mom are his top priorities.

Since 1991, when he became FCS president, he has attended almost 60% of FCS events.  That presently (2019) means 44 out of 76 events.  With that many events, we have a few dates where more than one FCS event will occur at the same time.  Like you, it is impossible for him to be in two places at once.  Also, like most of you, he simply cannot afford to attend all of our more costly events, as his piggy bank only holds so much.  That means that he has to prioritize.

Furthermore, he attempts to take as many people as possible who are on his duck hunting and bass fishing rotations duck hunting and bass fishing.  If he has a duck hunt or bass fishing trip planned on the same date as another FCS event he will always attend the duck hunt or bass fishing trip because the only way that those events will happen is for him to be there (they can’t go in his boat without him).

From October through January he will be deer or duck hunting just about every weekend. This means that there is no room for sporting clays shoots in his schedule for those months.  Hunting is his first love and he makes no apology for it.  So, if there is another event that is on the same day as a hunt guess which one will win.

Does FCS have any paid positions or internships?

We are a small (290+ member, but only 61 members who are current in their dues, as of the end of 2018) hunting, fishing, and shooting club.  We do not now, nor have we ever had, paid positions or internships and do not anticipate that will ever change.  Our officers are all volunteers. We recommend that you contact the following for possible paid positions or internships:  Christian Bowhunters of America (44 chapters) and Legacy Outfitters (15 chapters).  For other Christian organizations that you might explore check out our Christian Sportsmen’s Clubs and Organizations Link web page.

I would like to start an FCS chapter or a Christian hunting/fishing/shooting etc. club. What advice can you give me?

You can start an FCS chapter in your neck of the woods. Our bylaws state: “V. Chapters:

A.  A minimum of two supporting FCS members are needed to start a Chapter. These two supporting FCS members must serve as officers for their local Chapter (one as Chapter president and one as Chapter vice president).  Additional approved Chapter officer positions include Chapter treasurer, Chapter secretary, and Chapter Chaplin.  All Chapter officers must also be supporting FCS members.

B.  Each chapter will be governed by the FCS Bylaws and Statement of Faith. Chapters may organize their own meetings and events and maintain their own funds.  Chapters can add their own bylaws and statement of faith, as long as they do not conflict with the FCS bylaws and statement of faith.

C.  Officers can vote in chapter officer elections for their chapter only.

There will be challenges for us to support chapters that are far away.  They will not be insurmountable, but they will exist.  However, they can be overcome with tools such as Zoom or Teams.

I recommend that you spell out everything that you can think of so there are no surprises. Our FAQs, About UsHistoryMembership InfoLiability Waiver, and Sportsmen’s Links pages, in particular, may be of help to you in making decisions. The Sportsmen’s Links page first lists Christian Sportsmen’s Links. It will probably benefit you to see how other Christian hunting and fishing clubs other than us do things.

You’ll need money to pay for chapter expenses. Your basic choices are to require chapter membership dues, to meet expenses by donations, or a combination of the two.

I am a big fan of interest polls. Properly worded, they can tell you what your members are interested in doing and what they’re not.

A website is a great way to promote your club. Emphasize what is coming up and what you’ve done. Make it user friendly. We use www.siteground.com and the WordPress blog program.

It’s better to start with a few events. Promote them frequently and plan them well. After you have a few successful events under your belt word will spread and there will be a demand to add more events to your calendar.

Don’t do as Moses did and try to do everything yourself. If you do, you WILL burn out. Recruit people who you know and trust to be your officers. Give them clear job expectations and follow up to ensure that they are doing their jobs.  Two hard-working involved officers are better than ten uninvolved ones.

Have prayer and devotionals at as many events as prudent. I encourage you to try to keep the devotionals to 15 minutes and under. I have learned that if I go longer than that and I will lose many of my audience. Perhaps it’s because our meetings start at 7:00 PM and people are tired from long days at work. Or perhaps people have been overloaded with meetings and their brains can’t accept another one that late. I suspect that this will be true no matter where in the country a meeting is being held.

The following is by Jeremy Harrill with www.GoMission.net – Eight Truths They Don’t Tell You About Being An Outdoor Ministry Leader:

When ministry is done right, you’ll see God transform the lives of men around you. Unfortunately we’re often told only about the “warm and fuzzy” side of ministry. Negative happens, and if you let it blind-side you, it could take you out of the game entirely. Here’s some brutal truths I’ve learned over the years.

The Biggest Disappointment In Ministry Is: Disappointment.  Why?  Because people are flawed, imperfect works in progress. People will disappoint you. And guess what, you will disappoint people too! Show some grace, because you’ll want people to show you grace at some point, too.

Ministry Is Messy.  People often times only see the cool stuff (the camo, the hunting and fishing trips, the shirts with the ministry logo, big-burly dudes who would never step foot in a church accepting Christ at one of your events, etc). The real truth is that ministry is dirty and even nasty sometimes. So don’t expect it to be easy. You will have to deal with problems and there will be conflict. Ministry is about pouring into people – often at the darkest times in their life.

Success Takes Time. Ministry isn’t immune to life in a world of instant gratification. We want to launch the ministry on Friday and have the Wild Game dinner or Outdoorsman Bible Study the next week. Relationships take time, especially with men, so don’t expect it to take root overnight. You cannot microwave relationships. Be patient and well planned.

You Cannot Do It Alone.  Repeat this over and over again to yourself. If you go it alone, you’ll kill the very movement you started.

It’s A Calling.  If it’s not – you will give up at the first sign of trouble.  Check out Jason Cruise’s MissionU piece for greater depth on the power of the call.

Numbers Do Not Tell Your Story. Success is not measured by a number. We are infatuated with “the numbers” in our society, especially in churches. You hear it all the time at church: How many were there? How many accepted Christ? How much money did we raise? Recently, a guy who was starting a Bible study for outdoorsmen say to me, “I only have 8 guys coming to the study.” He sounded like he was giving up. Never forget that Jesus started with 2: Simon and Andrew. Don’t judge the ministry by a number. If you have 3, then that’s 3 families that reap the benefits of a husband and father who comes home changed by interaction with the living God.

Expect Opposition. In fact, if you aren’t getting any pushback at all, then something isn’t right.

Ministry Is Never About You. It might sound harsh, but it’s true. It’s Gods ministry. Let Him work through you. Many who start outdoor ministry think it will open the door for more hunting opportunities. Honestly, I think I hunt less than I did before all of this started. John Maxwell said, “We impress people at a distance, we impact them up close.” We’re in this business to impact people with the life-changing message of Christ, not to impress people. That means getting in the pit with guys when they are struggling and doing life with them regularly.

Bible verse of the day

For just as we share abundantly in the sufferings of Christ, so also our comfort abounds through Christ.

Today’s Devotionals and Blogs

Kent Crockett’s blog – www.kentcrockett.blogspot.com

Mark Dillow’s blog – http://noclearline.blogspot.com/