So many times when we think of our outdoor activities we envision an event with a friend or family member. What I was reminded of recently was that for some, the outdoors involves the whole family. Many families love to spend time in a campground or at the lake. Lake houses, houseboats, and campers are a sign that families can play together. I’ve never seen a child who complains about playing in the water for hours on end. I really can’t think of anything that is not positive about putting a lifejacket on a child and letting him or her explore all of the things the lakes have to offer. It’s good for them physically, mentally, and socially, and it even keeps them from becoming morning couch potatoes and video game junkies. Many women also love being involved in the outdoors in these ways as well. While most outdoors women are not hunters, many do love to fish. They might not be the bass fishing tournament type, but they are passionate about a day or night on the pontoon boat catching whatever comes by looking for an easy meal. When you put the whole family together for a few days on the lake it can be a fun, wholesome, and memorable time for all. These times will become unforgettable memories for the children. They will look back on them fondly throughout the rest of their life.
It is so important what we hold dear to us as a family. It not only speaks volumes as to our priorities, but it will shape the families of the future. If our family is central to all that we do, it will most likely be the same for our children. But again, it is more than just family time; it is what our family is doing with that time that counts. It is what our family holds dear. It is what we value. And what we do will always drowned out what we say.
If there is one thing I want my family to know without a shadow of a doubt; it is what is first in my life. I want them to see what I hold dear above all else. After they have sprinkled my ashes from a tree stand or around the bend of a river, I want them to be able to say, “Ole Gary sure liked to hunt and fish, but what he loved most was being a follower of Jesus and helping others do the same.”