Taking Lessons From the GOAT of Camping
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Taking Lessons From the GOAT of Camping

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Taking Lessons From the GOAT of Camping

So as fate would have it, our GOAT learned everything he knew from his Father. His Father seemed to invent camping. He was an expert. He knew every tree, plant, berry, and stone. He could predict the weather. He could tell you about every living creature. His voice would keep you mesmerized and in awe. He single-handedly created a camp that was beautiful and entirely self-sufficient.

That camp ended up closing. I will spare you the sad details. His Dad did continue to be an expert camper and guide. He had some pretty famous clients through the years. All the while, His Son was watching and learning. He was so excited about the chance to be just like His Father. He would have to wait a long time, but finally, it was His turn.

Camping with Abram

One of His Fathers first camping students was a guy named Abram. He did pretty well, but it took His Dad a while to teach him. Then his son Isaac wanted to learn too. So, of course, His dad got started teaching him right away. There were other relatives that did learn some lessons, but then Abram had a nephew that nobody had any luck teaching. He just would not follow directions. His Dad had quite a few students like that. They would say they wanted to learn all the right skills, but they never wanted to do the hard parts.

Camping with Isaac and His Twins

Isaac had twin boys. They were named Jacob and Esau. Esau took to camping and the wilderness right off the bat. He was one of His Dads gifted students, but some family drama happened, and He had to start working with Jacob. Jacob ended up having 12 boys. That definitely kept Him busy. Sometimes those teenage boys could be pretty hard-headed and cruel to the younger siblings. 

Camping with Moses Near the Red Sea

There once was this other man that came to His Dad for help. His name was Moses. He was a fifth-generation grandson of Abram. This guy had a hard time growing up. He was adopted, but he really didn't belong. His brother was always picking on him. He also had an awful temper which didn't help him stay out of trouble. That must have been the longest camping trip ever. His dad taught and worked with this guy and his large family for forty years. Forty years out in the wilderness. I am not sure how He did it. He had divine patience and true love for this group. 

That family has a long history. As generation after generation lived, they were taught the joys, trials, and lessons of camping and the wilderness. They gathered food from the earth. They made their clothing from woven wool. They not only survived but thrived when they listened to His Dad's instructions. Many loved and worshipped His Dad. Some were thick-headed and chose to go their own path.

Greatest Camper of All Time ( Our GOAT)

So what about the GOAT? Yeah, it became his turn to teach His skills and lead by example. He was about 33 years old when His Dad looked at Him and said it was time. He was humbled and excited but also nervous. He wasn't sure He was up to the job. His Dad encouraged Him. He started His mission by picking 12 men to follow Him. He needed to teach His camping skills to others because He knew soon enough there would be more students to learn. He chose some pretty rough characters. Many people thought his chosen group would never be up to the task. He believed in every one of them, and He had a special relationship with each one. They all had talents that He knew would make them perfect for His Father's plan.

The ultimate GOAT camper's name is Jesus! God, His father, is the inventor and creator of every living thing. There are not many lessons in the Bible that do not include some sort of nature or wilderness aspect. God has shown us how to use each gift He has given us. He has taught us lessons using trees, animals, weather, and stones. 

Jesus came to teach us how to love and never underestimate the use of even the broken. Jesus’s rag-tag 12 was just the beginning. The people started calling them disciples. He called them fishers of men.

 He taught them lessons like:

 How to Love His Dad

Matthew 22:36-38 says, “’ Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?’ He said to him, ‘“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment.’”

Then He taught them about:

Loving one Another 

This lesson was harder to learn.

Matthew 22:37-40 “‘Love the Lord your God with all your passion and prayer and intelligence.’ This is the most important, the first on any list. But there is a second to set alongside it: ‘Love others as well as you love yourself.’ These two commands are pegs; everything in God’s Law and the Prophets hangs from them.”

He also taught them that:

Nothing, Nothing, NOTHING is More Important Than the Kingdom of God

Matthew 6: 30-33 “If God gives such attention to the appearance of wildflowers—most of which are never even seen—don’t you think he’ll attend to you, take pride in you, do his best for you? What I’m trying to do here is to get you to relax, to not be so preoccupied with getting, so you can respond to God’s giving. People who don’t know God and the way he works fuss over these things, but you know both God and how he works. Steep your life in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. Don’t worry about missing out. You’ll find all your everyday human concerns will be met. 34 “Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.

Don’t worry; God has a plan. He will not fail.

Matthew 6:25-26 “If you decide for God, living a life of God-worship, it follows that you don’t fuss about what’s on the table at mealtimes or whether the clothes in your closet are in fashion. There is far more to your life than the food you put in your stomach, more to your outer appearance than the clothes you hang on your body. Look at the birds, free and unfettered, not tied down to a job description, careless in the care of God. And you count far more to him than birds. 27-29 “Has anyone, by fussing in front of the mirror, ever gotten taller by so much as an inch? All this time and money wasted on fashion—do you think it makes that much difference? Instead of looking at the fashions, walk out into the fields and look at the wildflowers. They never primp or shop, but have you ever seen color and design quite like it? The ten best-dressed men and women in the country look shabby alongside them.

Jesus Taught the Importance of Clean Water

John 4:7-8 A woman, a Samaritan, came to draw water. Jesus said, “Would you give me a drink of water?” (His disciples had gone to the village to buy food for lunch.) 9 The Samaritan woman, taken aback, asked, “How come you, a Jew, are asking me, a Samaritan woman, for a drink?” (Jews in those days wouldn’t be caught dead talking to Samaritans.) 

10 Jesus answered, “If you knew the generosity of God and who I am, you would be asking me for a drink, and I would give you fresh, living water.”11-12 The woman said, “Sir, you don’t even have a bucket to draw with, and this well is deep. So how are you going to get this ‘living water’? Are you a better man than our ancestor Jacob, who dug this well and drank from it, he and his sons and livestock, and passed it down to us?”

13-14 Jesus said, “Everyone who drinks this water will get thirsty again and again. Anyone who drinks the water I give will never thirst—not ever. The water I give will be an artesian spring within, gushing fountains of endless life.”15 The woman said, “Sir, give me this water so I won’t ever get thirsty, won’t ever have to come back to this well again! 

He showed His disciples how to:

 Observe Nature and Discern the Seasons

Matthew 24: 32-35 “Take a lesson from the fig tree. From the moment you notice its buds form, the merest hint of green, you know summer’s just around the corner. So it is with you: When you see all these things, you’ll know he’s at the door. Don’t take this lightly. I’m not just saying this for some future generation, but for all of you. This age continues until all these things take place. Sky and earth will wear out; my words won’t wear out. 36 “But the exact day and hour? No one knows that, not even heaven’s angels, not even the Son. Only the Father knows.

Matthew 16:1-3 Some Pharisees and Sadducees were on him again, pressing him to prove himself to them. He told them, "You have a saying that goes, 'Red sky at night, sailor's delight; red sky at morning, sailors take warning.' You find it easy enough to forecast the weather - why can't you read the signs of the times?

Who better to teach us than the Creator? There are some things that the Bible doesn't come right out and explain. But in my opinion…. God created the Garden of Eden for us to live in. Just like it was never his will for Isreal to have a king, did he intend for us to live inside? Inside stone walls, running in a wheel, more isolated than ever before? He created everything we needed. He educated Adam and Eve on how to take care of His creation, and it would take care of them. Sometimes I think we are living backward. We work to be free 3-4 times a year to admire His creation and draw closer to our roots. Our roots are the dust of the earth. We need to spend more time connecting to them than the facade of happiness the world flaunts in our faces. Go home!

 Going camping really means going home.

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