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OUTDOOR TRUTHS: Remembering A Very Special Father-Son Moment

By Gary Miller

A recent picture I had not seen in several years brought an uncontrollable smile to my face.

It was my son and me leaning against one another and him holding up a squirrel by the tail. It was his first. There he was, a seven year old with his camouflage on, his dad’s hat that had been taken up to its smallest possible size, and a smile that could only be understood by people like you and me.

I remember propping up that 410 on my shoulder because it was too heavy for him to hold still long enough to shoot. And I remember that squirrel hitting the ground. To me, it was if he had just hit the game-winning home run or sank a last-second three-pointer. I couldn’t have been prouder. A hunter’s legacy had been passed on. That feeling, I knew, would never leave him. It may be diluted by time or deadened by toil but that unforgettable rush would tattoo his heart for life. Since that time there have been many other times that he has felt compelled to go back and resurrect those emotions. That’s what brings all of us back to the woods or the lakes. It is the hopes of reviving a racing heart that can only come from a bent rod or bow.

There is also a longing in the heart of man to go back to the place where we first discovered God. You may have let that relationship be diluted by time or deadened by toil. But nevertheless it is still there. You’ll never forget how your heart pounded at your first encounter with Him and no other activity or event will ever take its place. The worst thing you can do is ignore it. The best thing you can do is embrace it and let God revive His life in you one more time.

Gary Miller can be reached via e-mail at

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