Knock and the door shall be opened

February 19, 2008

Faith Outdoors

Here’s another application of Jesus’ encouragement in the Gospel to ask, seek and knock. On Saturday, my two oldest boys, Joe and Andy, and I went down to the Red Wing area to talk to landowners about spring turkey hunting. We were headed to the farm of someone I had talked to on the phone, but never visited in person.

With help from a good map, we almost made it there, but couldn’t find the exact house. So, I knocked on the door of one of his neighbors and explained my situation. He not only pointed the way to the right house, but invited the boys and I to hunt on his farm, too. I’m continually amazed at how nice many of the rural landowners are. They seem very willing to grant permission to hunt turkeys on their land.

I wrote a follow-up letter thanking him for his generosity and letting him know how much it means to me to be able to have this kind of father/son experience with my boys. People out in the country seem to understand that very well and I think this helps explain their willingness to let a father and his boys hunt on their land.

Sadly, a lot of boys in our culture miss out on this wonderful opportunity. In fact, studies are showing that the number of kids who enjoy the outdoors is dropping nationwide. Fortunately, the numbers appear to be holding steady in Minnesota.

On the same trip down to Red Wing, we were able to drop off some venison to one landowner who had expressed an interest in it last fall. I had shot a deer on his land and so did my friend’s son, Dan. In fact, it was Dan’s first deer ever. So, it was nice to give back to the landowner venison from deer we had shot on his land. We had a great visit with him and it was a good lesson for my boys on the importance of gratitude. I hope they always remember it.

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About Dave Hrbacek

Staff photographer and writer for The Catholic Spirit. Also, avid outdoors enthusiast with a passion for hunting, fishing and photography. Married to Julie and have four children, three boys and a girl.

View all posts by Dave Hrbacek