Probably one of the greatest blessings about growing up in the outdoors is that, from an early age, I saw the beauty of the world around me. My time spent catching brook trout and rainbows in the Rockies created a sense of wonder. That wonder developed over time into a sense of awe as I looked at the world around me. I would look at the intricacies of what I saw and think that there was way to much complexity and order for all of this to come from a random, haphazard accident happening billions of years ago.
Nature and even more specifically, fish, pointed me even as young person to wonder about the existence of an intelligent designer. I didn't have more than a sense that there was something or someone bigger than me who created beauty and intricacy and complexity for a purpose.
Even though I was intrigued about the existence of this Designer, church didn't do anything for me. I found it pointless and irrelevant to life.
But when I went to college, I ran into thoughtful and intelligent people whose lives were very attractive. As a college student at a major university, I had a chance to wrestle with truth and a variety of worldviews. Around that same time, a friend sat down with me and sketched out a picture of what the Bible talked about when it describes someone being reconnected with the God of the universe. He explained Jesus and the story of God - how Jesus came to earth to die on a cross. And through his death, burial, and resurrection, he made it possible for people who are sinful to be reconciled with a perfect God. For the first time in my life, I understood the point of the Christian faith. Jesus died in my place, and by putting my faith in Him, I could be forgiven and made into a new creation. I placed my faith (trust) in Christ that fall semester and feel indebted to Jesus for His sacrifice on my behalf.
The part of the Bible that stood out to me then was this sentence: God made him (Jesus) who had no sin to become sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God (2 Corinthians 5:21). I learned as a college student that it's through trusting in Jesus alone that someone is reconciled with God.
That reality has only made my experience as an outdoors person that much richer. Fishing isn't just something we do to pass time. It's a passion that we pursue that points us regularly not only toward the goodness of God, but also to the awesome beauty that our Creative God gave us to point us toward Him. This creation (and fishing) is a gift that God has given to us to enjoy.
My hope for you is that your experience with us and on your own in the outdoors will draw you closer to the truth and reality that Jesus wants to make himself known to you.