Apr
06

Sharing His Harvest by Randy Rowley 4/6/12

By

Comedian Jeff Foxworthy, best known for his “You might be a Redneck” skits, created a skit a few years ago where he pretended to berate his off stage wife for not being appreciative when he brought her the world’s most expensive meat. He stated that he incurred the following expenses:

$500 – lease
$800 – new rifle and scope
$150 – camo clothes
$50 – magazines
$200 – bullets
$6,000 – 4 wheeler
$500 – food for the lease
$8,200 – total

He also stated that he on average killed one deer each season and after processing he came home with 50 pounds of meat. Divide $8,200 spent by 50 pounds and you get $164/pound! As he points out in the skit – lobster doesn’t cost that much!

Although most of us don’t spend nearly that much every year on hunting and fishing, we’ll all agree that they’re expensive hobbies. About the only way that they are cost effective is successful self-guided fishing trips on near-by bodies of water or successful self-guided hunts on near-by public land or land that the landowner doesn’t charge you to use. The reason that I said “near-by” is the cost of gas will make even a no-cost-to-hunt or no-cost-to-fish trip cost ineffective if the land or body of water is far away.

Also, compared to procuring meat at a grocery store, hunting and fishing is much more difficult.

For starters hunting and fishing gear takes a lot of effort to maintain. Hunting is hard on boots, clothes, guns, scopes, binoculars, bows, arrows/bolts, broadheads, decoys, calls, and battery operated devices such as range finders and 2 way radios. Fishing is hard on rods, reels, lures, hooks, bobbers, weights, and line (especially knots). Both are hard on vehicles, knives, and flashlights. Add camping gear, a boat, a 4 wheeler, and a dog to the mix and you’re got a new list of things that have to be maintained.

Secondly, the act of hunting or fishing takes a lot of effort. Take a self-guided duck hunt for example. You’ve got to get up no later than 2:30 AM (for lakes that are an hour or less away), get dressed (including waders), meet up with your friends, drive to the lake, get everything in the boat and launch it or hike it in a mile or more, put out the decoys, hunt, pack everything up, take the boat back to the ramp and trailer it, drive back home, clean the ducks, wash your dirty clothes, clean your gun, and put everything back up. Even if you limit out you’ll only bring home a few pounds of meat for around a nine hour trip. I can go get a few pounds of better tasting meat at a nearby grocery store in about 30 minutes and not have to leave home at 3:00 AM!

Lastly, there is no guarantee of success. Despite extensive research and planning, perfect stand or decoy placement, and putting the bait three inches from the bass’ nose sometimes (or often) we are skunked. Even worse is being skunked due to our own ineptitude or to be blunter – we missed the deer or hog.

Considering these things, is it no wonder that some of us are stingy when we’re asked to share our harvest? It’s easy to develop an attitude that screams, “I worked hard for this meat, enduring countless hours in cold uncomfortable deer stands and hot dusty fields, and I’m gonna keep it!”

This attitude forgets the principle that God owns everything. Psalms 19:21 states, “You can make many plans, but the Lord’s purpose will prevail.” We can get on the best deer lease in the world, buy the best equipment, and feed six times a day year round, but if it is not in the Lord’s plan for you to get that Boone and Crockett deer it won’t happen. Or to put it another way, we harvested what we did because God allowed it; therefore, our harvest all belongs to him, not us.

Paul wrote in Philippians 2:3-4, “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.” Note that not all ambition is selfish. It is good ambition to serve God with everything that we have and to want to become more like him.

Even Christians can be driven by self-preoccupation and vain self-interest, such as moving up the ladder at work, church, or other places. Our desire for advancement sometimes manifests itself as self-promotion or manipulation. This is what Paul meant by “selfish ambition.” As a Christian’s self-absorption, selfish ambition, and conceit die they are replaced with a concern for the needs of others. We develop a new heart of love for others and no longer have a selfish heart of stone. Ezekiel 36:26 says, “I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.”

Once a year FCS members have a great opportunity to consider others as more important than ourselves. We cook game that we harvested and share it with people in need in Austin. Most of the people who live where we have our Wild Game Dinners are elderly, have low incomes and some have disabilities. Meat is a luxury they do not often see, much less wild game.

When I ask you to volunteer to help out, please do so. When I ask you to share your harvest, I encourage you to give generously. Don’t ask the Lord how much of your game you should share. Rather ask him how much of his harvest he wants you to keep.

Categories : Devotionals

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Bible verse of the day

Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

Today’s Devotionals and Blogs

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

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