A Father’s Joy, A Boy’s Rite of Passage
These are the stories I love to tell. Last week, I was entertaining clients at a favorite hunting location in Halifax County, NC. We hunted hard, only taking breaks for about an hour to grab a quick bite, swap stands, and head back out to the field. The hunting was tough! It’s hard to sit all day, seeing nothing, especially if you are a young hunter!
Early in the week we had a nice 8 pointer shot, but the regular hot spots went cold in a hurry. We had a young man in camp who had never shot a deer, he was set out on stand all by himself for huge blocks of time, that’s tough for even the most seasoned hunters. A few deer here and few deer there, but nothing at all for our young hunter.
The weather was unseasonably warm, mid 70’s in December, too bad some of the scent spray’s we use don’t double as sun tan lotion. As it usually goes, the last hour of the last day, it happens. The boy was put out at a great location near a bedding area, a great stand with a pretty good sized open area immediately in front of the set. I’m in a bow stand about a quarter mile away, praying that the good Lord will smile on one of our guests, the sun had just gone down when I hear it. BOOM! … I looked to sky and said “please God let that be Aaron”, immediately the phone in my pocket goes MMMMM .. MMMMM and I knew was had just happened. The text read “I got a deer” and with my fist clenched I’m arm pumping like I just shot Bullwinkle. I fired back, “I’m headed to you” I don’t know if I could have got to my truck fast enough. When I arrived the doe wasn’t 15 steps from the stand. I’m telling you, she was out in the wide open, and with a load of double 00 buckshot in her, she stayed where she laid.
You know, when I see that, and know how many people were praying that this young man would have that opportunity, it was glaringly evident to me that God had hand delivered that deer to him. His smile lit the path and we loaded the deer in the truck and headed to pick up his Dad who was just as excited. I was told later, the young man had used the same gun that his Dad had shot his first deer with, how cool is that? Do you remember your first deer? Who were you with? Your Dad, your Grandpa, Your Buddies? It is an event in a young person’s life they will never forget, a rite of passage. The celebration back at camp went on for hours, tales of the hunt over dinner, dressing out the deer on the rack and of course, the “war paint” pictures to be plastered over every social network known to man!
I know I say it a lot, but please remember to take a kid hunting or fishing, they’ll love you for it and who knows they may want to pass it on to their kids one day! God Bless you and you family this Holiday Season.