Life Away From The Treestand

john_hafner_06777I love to hunt! When I was in my twenties I spent countless hours hunting. If I wasn’t hunting I was doing something related to hunting. I worked construction, so I would pray for rain days so work would be canceled and I could either spend time walking in the woods scouting new spots or drive to Cabela’s to buy new gear. Whether it was deer, turkey, elk, ducks, or whatever, I loved hunting it. I loved the challenge, the planning, the time alone in the stand, and that rush the moment the arrow left the quiver. Needless to say I was obsessed with hunting.

But there was one thing that got in my way of hunting. I was newly married, soon followed by having my first daughter. The two girls in my life didn’t care that much about my love for hunting. They only cared that I was around to be with them, and I wasn’t. So wouldn’t you know, it was while sitting on a mountain top in Colorado, in God’s great outdoors that I so deeply loved, when He got my attention. 1 John 2:17 says, “The world and it’s desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever.” The world’s desires had a grip on me, but God showed me that there’s more to life than sitting in a tree stand and that the only things that matter are eternal things. People matter most and they matter to God! People are the only things that will last into eternity and we need to live our lives to impact people for God’s Kingdom.

So what’s your treestand? What’s that thing in your life keeping you from following God with everything you have and impacting others?  Your job, sports, alcohol, friends, extracurricular activities; if you don’t know, ask God to reveal it.  Our world is filled with things that consume our time and prevent us from following God and investing in people.  But most likely, that thing you’re chasing after isn’t going to last. I still love to hunt, but it’s no longer a priority like it once was. Eternal things have replaced it.  Following Jesus is my priority, and I have a 10-point reminder hanging on my office wall that points me to what’s most important.  For me, life became so much better when I got away from the treestand.  So if you have a treestand, whatever it is, I hope you can get away from it too.

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