Tuesday, November 30, 2010

I Got a Deer!

I missed him with the first shot, but hit him with the second!

Monday morning was absolutely beautiful! I walked out my back door at about 6:20am and loaded my gun. We're only 2.5 miles from campus, but our back yard opens up into 67 acres of forest land. When we were first checking this place out last spring, I was hoping that hunting would be an option here. When we moved in in August, my boys and I explored the place and I was able to get permission to hunt on it. It's very convenient!

A few weeks ago I started scouting the place out by walking around with a borrowed bow. I'm not an amazing shot with the bow yet, but I carried it around as I stalked around just in case I got close to anything. I was consistently seeing about 3 doe whenever I walked around, and I was able to get a good feel for where they were hanging out.

Two weekends ago, regular season opened and a few days later, Adam and I set up a two man ladder stand in an area that I deemed to be pretty good both for seeing deer and shooting safely. We went out a few times over the weekend, but we never saw anything close.

But on Monday, I was out in the stand by myself just after sunrise. I heard something that sounded like a wierd crow off in the distance, and it turned out to be a doe bleating. I heard her walking up behind me, and I just sat up in the tree as still as I could. I didn't even bother turning around because I didn't want it to see me move, and I couldn't shoot behind me because of the houses in that direction. It was critical that the deer pass me and get in front of my stand.

I waited as the deer came up closer and closer, walking and stopping to nibble on buds and paw at the ground looking for food. I heard another deer skip up to it, so now I knew there were two deer behind me. Were they does? A buck? I had no idea. When they got over to my right side, i was able to get a good look at them and i could see they were both does. The were literally 20 feet from me, just below my stand.

The one doe continued to bleat, and then I heard some rustling about 50 yards in front of me in the trees. Coming thru some heavy brush I saw another deer. This one was scraping his head on some saplings, so I assumed it must be a buck! The brush was thick and it was a ways off, so I couldn't tell for sure. The doe next to me bleated loud and strong, and then the buck started coming my way. I couldn't make out any antlers, so I assumed it was a doe! It was bigger than the other does, so I figured I'd take that one.

At about 20 yards, I put my cross hairs on it and pulled the trigger. Kapaow!! All three deer started running around in circles totally confused! But unfortunately the one I shot at looked like he was running perfectly fine! He took off to about 50 yards away, and as he ducked behind a tree I chambered another round. I was pretty convinced I must have missed it, so I figured I better take another shot. As it moved into site, I shot again, and it jumped up, ran out in front of me, came towards me, ran onto the trail, laid down, put it's head down and died.

I had totally missed the first shot! Which was kind of crazy because I didn't miss the second one, and that was a much farther shot. I hadn't had any time to sight my gun in this season, so maybe I shot over the top of it......or maybe I just had a slight case of the fever!

I waited about 15 minutes and then climbed down the stand and went over to it. The shot was real good, except it hit the front shoulder a bit. As i looked at it, i noticed a small nub of an antler on the head. I looked closer and realized that it had a single spike on the side laying in the dirt. The other antler was broken off! I'd shot it thinking it was a doe, but it turned out to be a buck! Not a good looking buck, but it'll cook up just the same.

I field dressed it -which took me awhile since I hadn't done it in a few years! Then i drug it home and hung it in the yard.

I cut out the inside 'tenderloin' and had steak and eggs for breakfast.

Jack had been dreaming of a European mount, but once he saw the pathetic "rack" on this little fella, he realized we wouldn't be hanging that one on the wall!

Adam came over and helped me hoist it up in the garage. It was so warm at that point (45 degrees) that we started butchering it right away.

The boys thought every bit of it was totally fascinating! We were all excited and really grateful!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Ladies Paintball Trip

Commando crawling. Bullets flying. Voices screaming. Knuckles bleeding (just a couple). Nails breaking. That’s right, the women of Cru had a paintball shoot out on Saturday. We had about 10 women (including me; Stephanie) most of whom had never played paintball before, show up for an outdoor adventure. The weather was gorgeous and everybody had a lot of fun!

This fall some good friends from church let our ministry set up a paintball course on their property and we have had 3 different groups of students out to play paintball. Our friends Ned and Karen LaCelle graciously provided hot dogs and lemonade for the women as an after battle picnic lunch.

We played several rounds of paintball and then drew parallels from the “battlefield” to life on campus. We followed up the games with two really great discussions about the nature of communication and relationships. We talked about how men and women bond differently and discussed some of the barriers that keep us from having close friendships with other women. Through our discussion, a freshman named Kaitlyn shared about how our paintball experience helped her understand why she doesn’t feel close to her athletic teammates. Though she spends lots of time doing things with them (ie., practice) they don’t share the deeper level heart things that enable people, especially women, to bond.

We also talked about how life at Cornell can be isolating, and students can spend much of their time there just “hunkering down behind a barrier” rather than taking the risks involved to move towards other people. More than one woman shared that her “default mode” for life on campus is living life alone and often in isolation because that is easier. We talked about the Biblical truth from Ecclesiastes 4 that two are better than one, and how God’s design for us is that we live life together , in community, on a “team” with others; which can be more difficult but much more rewarding. A senior named Charlene pointed out the fact that celebrating alone, really isn’t much of a celebration – you need others to share it with. As I think about my own life, and all the facets of it, I would have to agree we are better together.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Distribution Problems

One of our students led a really good devotional tonight at our leadership meeting. Heidi is a senior and serves as a community group leader in our ministry here at Cornell.
In class the other day she got to watch a documentary and learn about some of the disparities in India. India is one of the world’s major food producers growing foods like rice, wheat, corn, and beans as well as raising poultry, beef and dairy. India is second to China in terms of agricultural production, but they account for less than 1.5 per cent of international food trade.This means that most of the food cultivated in India stays in India. And yet India is home to one quarter of the world’s starving population and one third of the children in India are malnourished.

It just doesn’t make sense! There is plenty of food, but there is a major distribution problem. Learning about this was very engaging and emotional, but upon further reflection, Heidi began to be convicted about the “distribution problems” in her own life relating to evangelism. All around us there are people “starving” for the “bread of life” and we have plenty of it! We are called to share this spiritual nourishment with the whole world, but we are reluctant to. We’ll gorge ourselves attending Bible studies, listening to sermons, going to church services, prayer groups, meetings, concerts, and having devotional times; we know what the Bible says but we fail to deliver the Good news to those we see every day.

Heidi walked us thru two passages together:

Romans 10:11-15

11 As Scripture says, “Anyone who believes in him will never be put to shame.” 12 For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, 13 for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

14 How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? 15 And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!”

Matthew 9:35-38

35 Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness. 36 When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. 37 Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. 38 Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.”

Next she asked a couple of questions to the group. I’ll write down her questions, and then some of the answers that students gave as we kicked it around a bit.

1. Why is it often so hard to talk to others about Jesus even when we know how important it is?

· We mostly think of our selves, we are self-centered and self conscious. We fear the reactions of others.

· We can feel inadequate.

· We can feel unworthy or like a hypocrite.

· More concerned about our own image, and our pride.

· We don’t see the urgency of it all.

· We don’t really believe the Gospel is good news.

2. What are some things you have done or experienced that have helped you to move beyond these things?

· Yield to the Holy Spirit’s leading in our lives

· Witness in community.

· Understand and experience God’s love so you can adequately reflect it.

· Evaluate whether you really love God

· Believe God that there are people around who want to hear the good news.

· Pray that God would open your eyes to the harvest.

Heidi ended our devo time by asking everyone to think of practical ways they they could be more missional in their daily lives. It was a blessing for us to reflect on God’s call, the need in the world, and to repent of our personal “distribution problems.”

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Lumberjack Family

We are fans of creativity, though it is an art that is being lost in our busy world. I know it would be easier to just buy costumes, but you don’t get that sense of satisfaction of making it yourself. This year we dressed up as a family of Lumber Jacks. A couple of flannel shirts, some fake beards, and a few homemade axes crafted by dad on the scroll saw. It all turned out pretty cute. Our oldest son had been looking forward to dressing up as Optimus Prime since we found the costume at a garage sale for a buck this summer. So most of us were Lumberjacks and we had a great time, making a family memory and putting our creativity to good use.

At Preschool, Joe donned a boxer outfit.

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Titus turns 3!

Titus turned 3 on Oct. 22nd. Our little boy is getting so big. We had a motorcycle theme for him and made a big motorcycle cake to share with our friends at church. Jack painted the flames on the gas tank with edible markers and he did a great job. We got to take in a special snack to his preschool class too and we make motorcycles out of pretzels, Oreo wheels and an apple slice for the gas tank.
Titus is a great kid. We have to go the store a lot in our family and Titus is still sweet enough to raise his hand, jump up and down and yell “I do! I do!” when asked who wants to go with mom or dad to the store. His brothers have out grown that fun. He loves to play with Jack and Joe and joins in the wrestling match or make believe game or “race” when all three boys run laps through our living room and kitchen in endless circles. He is blessing in so many ways, we love him very much and thank God for our little Rex.

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