Dane Skelton

    Dane Skelton is the Pastor of Faith Community Church and the author of Jungle Flight: Spiritual Adventures at the Ends of the Earth, a book of true stories from the ministry of JAARS (formerly Jungle Aviation and Radio Service). His second book, Papua Pilot: Flying the Bible to the Last Lost Peoples, co-authored with the late Paul Westlund, is now available on Amazon.com and Christianbook.com.
    View RSS Feed

    Archives

    • Jun16Wed

      WAITING ON GOD AND GROUNDHOGS

      June 16, 2021

      I got my first groundhog last night. The ten-pound thief was tearing up my farmer friend’s soybean field, and I wanted to help. Plus, I like shooting. But I didn’t realize till later how much groundhog hunting has in common with spirituality.

      Several verses come to mind, but these two will do:

      34       Wait for the Lord and keep his way,

      and he will exalt you to inherit the land[1]

      10       Be still, and know that I am God. [2]

      Groundhog hunting takes a whole lot of waiting and being still. We waited an hour before we saw one but couldn’t get off a shot. At an hour and fifteen minutes, I was ready to get down and walk. But I’m getting ahead of myself.

      Brian, the farmer, and Glenn prepared ahead of time. Brian provided intel on their location. Glenn, a lifelong hunter who grew up farming and knows how to stalk them, knew just where to park the truck. He also knows what weapons work best and how to maintain them. When I arrived, I found my gun would not work. Glenn gave me his best groundhog gun, a beautiful Marlin .22 magnum with a scope. I did not have a seat and would not have lasted long sitting on the truck bed. Glenn gave me his best camp/hunting chair. I did not have a rifle prop for the surprisingly heavy .22. Glenn had a high-tech one that took the load off my arms for over an hour. I just showed up. Glenn was prepared.

      Waiting on God is not a passive activity. Doing it well requires preparation. We need accurate intel available only in God’s Word. We need to “watch and pray and stay awake,” as Jesus taught. We need to “pray at all times in the Spirit and keep alert,” as the Apostle Paul wrote. And we need to be quiet and keep still for a long time, much longer than the hour and a half I spent waiting for the groundhog.

      After watching the old tobacco barn and field across from it for one-and-a-half hours, I laid the rifle across my lap and started talking. That’s how long I can last without flapping my lips. Then, I looked left, and there he was, a little over fifty yards away! I was surprised but not too surprised to level the crosshairs on the critter and pull the trigger.  

      When we wait patiently on the Lord, informed of his ways, and prepared to obey, we may be surprised when he reveals himself. That’s ok. Just be ready to act.



      [1] The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). (Ps 37:34). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.

      [2] The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). (Ps 46:10). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.

      Leave a Comment