Monthly Archives: July 2018

Alaska, here we come!

I worked all day, daylight to dark on my boat. I sanded some of the spots that had epoxy runs on them, did some bondo work on low spots, sanded some more, and painted the whole boat again. Just wanted it to look pretty. We are leaving for Alaska tomorrow evening at 6 pm. We are leaving then to be able to get through Seattle without the traffic. We are going to drive straight through without stopping to sleep, just trading off and sleeping in the car. It is going to take approximately 50 hours to reach Soldotna. I am planning on bringing back 500 lbs of sockeye salmon and halibut fillets. That will be nice!

In the gospel of John in chapter 21 Jesus asks John, ” do you love Me more than these?” “These” that Jesus is referring to is the fishing boats and nets that the disciples had just been in when Jesus came to fix them breakfast. I need to replay that conversation regularly, “Do I love Jesus more than fishing?” The answer will be demonstrated by my life.

Wisdom

Proverbs 3:13-17 How blessed is the man who finds wisdom, and the man who gains understanding. For her profit is better than the profit of silver and her gain better than fine gold. She is more precious than jewels.

Wisdom is the main thing, the most important thing, nothing else is as important as wisdom is. Wisdom is foundational to good marriages, wise parents raise good kids, wise people manage their finances well, wise people get along with others, wise people keep God first in their lives.

There are not very many truly wise people around, because the price is to high for most. To receive wisdom there must be a very strong desire for wisdom, a strong hungering and thirsting for more and more wisdom. A casual interest for wisdom won’t work. If you aren’t consumed with getting wisdom you won’t.

To receive wisdom there must be a strong and consistent seeking of wisdom. Proverbs says to seek it like gold, silver, and treasure. Seeking is pro-active, that is we actively do something that is a proven way to acquire more wisdom. I like to say that seeking wisdom is like fishing. You want to catch fish so you, but it isn’t automatic that you will. A few people catch a lot of fish, and a lot of people catch a few fish. We are leaving for Alaska Friday morning to fish for Halibut and sockeye salmon.

The greatest source of wisdom is experience that is gained while in pursuit of wisdom.

Alaska Fishing

Before I can leave for Alaska to go fishing this Friday I have a long list of things I need to get done. There are some things on the list that are under the category of “it would be nice to get that done before I leave”, and then there are those things that are super important and really ought to be done before I go, and then there are those things that have to get done or I can’t go. Obviously the sub-group on my Alaska to do list “things that must get done or I can’t go” have the highest priority, and I will focus on getting those checked off before moving to the others. Today it was interesting to me to note how much I was drawn to do the things that weren’t on the “have to or I am stuck home” list. Why would I spend time on things that don’t have to get done and ignore things that absolutely must get done. I do it all the time, why? It really is stupid, and nonsensical, but I do it anyway. I don’t know the answer for sure, but my guess is that the things that must get done, as I look at the list of them, aren’t very fun, or exciting, they all would easily be described by my Dad as chores. An aspect of the character trait of self-control is choosing to do what is most important, and must get done. I really want to go fishing in Alaska so I have a strong motivation that greatly helps my self control. In all of life a key principle of self control is reward. I am working at attaching a big reward to the most important activities in my life even if I have to manufacture the rewards so that I maintain focus on the things that really matter.

Alaska Next

Some of you asked me,what is next in my life as far as adventures go, and my answer is, ” I am going fishing in Alaska.” For most of the winter I was working on building a 24 foot Dory Boat that was designed to launch off of the beach. I am leaving Friday morning with Patty, myself, and a couple friends who are going along to help drive the boat to Alaska. It is 2,500 miles to Soldotna and we are going to drive straight through without stopping to sleep. We will rotate drivers and sleep in the car while we are driving, and stop for gas and food. It will take us approximately 50 hours to get there. The Alaskan Highway is the most beautiful in the world, and we will also see lots of wildlife. When Patty and I drove it a couple of years ago we saw 92 bears, besides buffalo, mountain lion, moose, elk, caribou, deer, and mountain goats.

When we get there we will be fishing for Sockeye Salmon in Soldotna, and we will be going out into Cook Inlet to fish for Halibut. We will launch the boat at Ninilchik, where there is a company that hooks on the boat trailer with a big 4 wheel drive skidder and backs the boat into the ocean far enough to float the boat off of the trailer. When we are done fishing we radio when close and they back the trailer in again, and we drive the boat up on the trailer and they pull it out. I have have never done this before, so it should be an adventure for sure. I have never operated a boat in the ocean so this is a new area of learning and experience for me, but I will have a number of friends fishing with me that have and will teach me. I am looking forward to catching lots of Sockeye, Halibut, and Ling Cod, and bringing home several hundred pounds of fish.

I am bringing my 12 year old grandson, Jesse we us and he is going to have an experience of a lifetime catching fish bigger than he is. I am looking forward to spending a lot of time with him fishing, talking about life, guy stuff, and Jesus.

Between right now and Friday morning at 5 am I have 52 things on my “to do” list to get done before we leave, some as easy as round up all my life jackets, and others a bit more complicated like installing my “Fish Finder – GPS” mounted on the boat.

As my schedule and focus changes, the challenge is to keep my “spiritual disciplines” faithful and regular. It is so easy to forget to give God time and to seek Him first, but absolutely super important if I want to grow.

Dee’s Bicycle Trip – last day

We camped last night at Idanha, and left this morning at 5:30 am and road 64 miles to home. I road into our driveway at 1:30 pm with a bunch of grandkids waiting and cheering for me as I pedaled the last 100 feet of the trip. I was surprised at the rush of emotion I felt as they yelled, “welcome home, grandpa”. It was nice to be home. Most of the 64 miles was downhill or level and there was no headwind, and because we left so early and then cut off at Mehama to a country side road that went through Scio we had very little traffic, a great last day ride. After I visited with kids, grandkids, and Patty I laid down in my nice, comfortable bed and took a nap. I then went down to my office and got caught up on all that took place while I was gone from my secretary, Jean, read and answered emails, and worked on my sermon. I preached tonight and I will in both services tomorrow. I had a real struggle with my voice tonight, and I am hoping that a good nights sleep will fix it for tomorrow.

One of the things I preached about tonight was how to have strength and energy when you get old. God gives strength to the weary, but there are a lot of weary Christians out in the world who don’t seem to be getting much of that strength and energy from God. I shared 5 keys to receiving that gift from God tonight. (1) Have a strong desire to do something with your life that matters, really matters, what Jesus calls fruit in John 15. God gives us His strength for a purpose, to bear fruit for Him, not just to be able to function and do what everybody else does. If you don’t aspire to bear fruit, more fruit, and much fruit don’t expect God to give you His power. (2) Ask God for His strength, ask a lot, ask often, ask every time you feel tired, ask a hundred times a day. (3) Control your thinking. Don’t think, “I am tired”, because you will become more tired. There are dozens of verses in the Bible about God promising to give strength to the weary, memorize several of them, and as soon as a “I’m tired” thought pops into your head choose to set your mind on one of those verses and meditate on it. (4) Control your mouth. Don’t ever say, never, ever, absolutely never say, ” I am so tired”. If you weren’t, you will be now, and if you were it will now be 10 times worse. (5) Control your flesh. Get up and do something that matters. But, I am so tired, you say, get up and do something anyway, do not let how you feel dictate how you act or what you do. If you feel tired, exhausted even, and you get up and do something that will bear fruit, you won’t die, but you probably will start feeling better. I am not saying you shouldn’t rest, but rest systematically, and then do something great.