I went up to the Portland Sportsman’s Show today with 4 other guys from JBC, and we had a great time. A brochure said that there would be 150,000 people come to the show this year over a 5 day period, an average of 30,000 people each day! We left this morning at 8:00 am, stopped at the Cracker Barrel for an awesome breakfast, and got to the Expo Center about 15 minutes before it opened and stood in a long line with a bunch of other excited people waiting for it to open. We took about 4 hours to walk through the whole thing and see all the exhibits with fishing stuff, boats, campers, hunting stuff and the hunting and fishing guides. I carry a bag with me and pick up a brochure for just about every guide that is at the show after talking to them and hearing their stories of dozens if not hundreds of deer and elk killed and looking at their pictures and videos. On the way home we stopped at the Oswego Grill for dinner and I had Baby back ribs and drank 3 cups of very good coffee. It was a very enjoyable day and all I bought were some Kokanee lures for Patty😀 the Portland Sportsman’s Show is one of my most favorite events and experiences each year. I think one of the reasons is because I went several times with my Dad and he enjoyed it so much. In one week JBC is going to open our own Sportsman’s Show at the Lynn County Fair Grounds and we are hoping and praying for 8000 people. Ours will be much smaller event but it will be good with lots of vendors showing off their stuff. I expect to have just as good of a time at ours as I did at the big one in Portland today.
I used to struggle with guilt for going to the Show and wasting a day that I could have used to do something much more profitable in ministry. Several years ago I was struggling big time with depression because of the number of failures that I recently had experienced in my life in ministry as a pastor at JBC. I went ahead and attended the show, but the entire trip up I was beating myself up for being so lazy and uncommitted to my church and the Lords’s work which he had given to me to do for his glory. A group of us spent the day drooling over fishing rods, guns, and boats, and we were about half way home before I realized that the black cloud that had been over my head for awhile was gone. I thought, Wow, I am feeling pretty good right now, and to my surprise the depression didn’t return the next day, or the next or the next. That Sunday I preached with more energy and passion than I had for a long time. Several people including Patty made comments about how much more fire I had than normal. I thought a lot about the reason for my sudden resurrected life, and the only conclusion that I could arrive at was the day spent with friends walking around in a crowd looking at hunting and fishing stuff had somehow, for some reason renewed my fervency.
I have since learned that I have several gas tanks, one of them is a physical energy tank from which I get energy to walk, run, work, and fish. When it gets empty I simply take a nap or a good nights sleep and I am ready to go again. Another one of my tanks is an emotional gas tank which when full makes me feel energized, passionate, and motivated. My emotional gas tank is used up by ministry to people and it needs refilled regularly and I need to discover how to do that. Well that day after walking around in a big buildings full of people, looking at cool stuff I discovered one way that worked well to fill me back up to full. I never miss now.