Second Congregational Church of Derby, CT
The moose of many blessings
As many of you know I am a hunter. I am honored to share (with many others in this congregation) the hunting tradition and most important, the respect for the animals that we hunt.
Although I venture into the woods yearly in search of Whitetail deer and occasional turkeys and various small game, it has been a dream for many years to be chosen to participate in a moose hunt.
To put it in perspective, I have been mailing in my request for about 15 years now to both Maine and (more recently) New Hampshire for a chance to be chosen. In New Hampshire in 2014 there were more than 10,000 applicants sent in for a chance at one of the 124 permits given. Out of the 124 awarded, 85% went to residents of New Hampshire . That left 19 permits for ALL non residents. Chances seemed bleak.
That brings me to blessing #1. I had been pretty down with loosing my job earlier in the year and my recent deer hunting had not been very successful. To my surprise a letter from NH Fish & Game informed me I had been chosen to participate. GOD understood my needs and blessed me with this opportunity. There is no doubt in my mind!
I was torn. As much as I wanted this to happen, I struggled to justify the cost as I was not working at that time. Both Marsha and Brother Dave W convinced me that I should do this and Dave even volunteered to accompany me. The hunt was on!
It was time for blessing #2. Not living in NH was going to make it a challenge to scout much and just keep an eye on changing conditions from day to day. I contacted “Brother Bill” a Brother in Christ from our NH church (who was also an avid hunter) and told him of being awarded the permit and asked if he could offer any help. He than informed me that prior to me contacting him, he had to change his normal vacation time and had chosen the exact same week that the hunt was scheduled. He said it was “meant to be” and was excited to participate.
The three of us met and started to plan out the hunt. Having three brothers all with the same faith and desire to make this successful was a memorable experience and a great example of brotherhood and strength of common beliefs. The hunt was already a success.
After numerous hours of planning and scouting, opening day arrived. We sat in my truck in the darkness waiting for the pre-light of a special sunrise to guide us safely. Before we started our hike, we all stopped and gave thanks to GOD for this opportunity and asked that he bless us with a safe (and successful) hunt.
And than blessing #3. After 80 hours of scouting and 30 hours of hunting we were given the chance to honor the Lord and all those that had supported us through this. As the time to pull the trigger came, I closed my eyes and asked the lord to provide me the ability to be accurate. He answered my prayer!
We immediately hugged each other in joyous excitement. After a few minutes of celebration, we remembered it was GOD that provided this and we joyously raised our arms and praised the Lord for being so great and giving (King David would have been proud). However, our joy turned to concern as after hours of attempting to get this huge animal out of the woods, we realized we needed additional help.
Yes, blessing #4. Although we had enough manpower it became clear we needed bigger equipment. A late night call to another Brother in Christ from our NH church resulted with “Brother Bob” bringing his excavator out to the rescue. 10 hours later we were back at my place in NH with Mr. Moose in the truck.
Four Christen men, faithfully working together made this an experience none of us will ever forget. When GOD is involved, nothing is impossible!
PS: A little trivia
The hunt was during the month of October.
My birthday is in October.
Dave’s birthday is in October.
Brother Bill from NH was born in October.
And, yes, Brother Bob (with the excavator) was also born in October.