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Thankful for the Harvest


A few years back Mikey Miller and I were hunting in Missouri. On the last morning of the hunt we went to a stand with conditions that weren’t optimal, bad wind etc. We settled into the stand and said a little prayer thanking the Lord for letting us be there and asking him to provide for us if it be His will (say you haven’t prayed that prayer in a deer stand, we all have). Just after daylight a nice young 10pt was headed up the hill directly toward us. At that moment I felt a little validated that we’d been able to sneak into that spot without spooking all the deer. This nice 2-3yr old 10pt came in stopped broad side at 20 yards directly down wind. We obviously acknowledged that this would be a great deer in 2-3 more years and let him peacefully pass. A few moments later I reminded Mikey that we had said our prayer and that if it was His will the Lord would provide. Mikey succinctly replied, “Oh, he’s already provided, we’re just too greedy to take it.” I realized in that moment, he was right. How often do we ask God for something, he provides and then we reject/ignore it because it isn’t the trophy or doesn’t look exactly like we wanted.

The Hunt

Fast forward to this week in Utah, tough hunting conditions, mainly relative to timing & hot weather. Bulls not yet responding to cow calls and bugling at a minimum. We had 1 bull within 100 yards all week and that encounter didn’t pay off. Friday morning we hiked up early, got on a couple of bugling bulls to no avail. We hiked over to another draw with really no good options remaining. We glassed up a few cows a couple hundred yards away but that was it. It dawned on me that it had been a couple days since we’d paused long enough to give thanks for the opportunities we have. So, we said a little prayer and continued glassing.

No kidding, inside of 3 minutes later we had not taken another single step and out walked this bull at 25yds. He never bugled, we didn’t hear him coming, he just stepped out into the open. We were standing there with no cover, frozen. He immediately realized this as a situation he needed to vacate and I realized it as a situation I could not pass.

Slowly he made his way down the hill away from us. Slowly I put down my binos and nocked an arrow. He went around behind a bush and I came to full draw. He stepped out from behind the bush at 38.5 yards slightly quartered away (I mean, cmon). Having my pin dialed to 40 yards the arrow went right where I sent it.

I have a friend, Eric Stripling, who taught me a lot about God’s provision. I’ve never met anyone who conveyed an understanding of God’s provision quite like Eric. Eric has gone on to receive his reward but I think of him often and the example he set as a man of God who understood life was about more than the trivial things this earth has to offer. Now, you may say, “Grant, this is a long form rationalization for why you shot a small, young bull.” No doubt, I can understand that. However, I can’t say that I’ve ever been more thankful for a harvest. This one will always be a special memory and reminder of the Lord’s perfect timing and provision in spite of my selfish, earthly desires. Good hunting ✌

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