Anna Walerczak (8)
My Picky Little Girl!!
By Paul Walerczak
“Is it time to get up yet.” “I don’t know, I think it is.” “Is daddy up yet?” “I don’t think so.” “Let’s see if he is up.” “OK.”
These were the soft whispers I heard outside my bedroom door April 2nd, 2011 at 3:45am!! My alarm was set for 4:15am, but my two little built in alarm clocks named Anna (8) and Will (10), had already beat it to the bunch or in this case the buzz. You see today was a special day and they couldn’t stand it any longer. Today was the opening day of the Kentucky Youth Turkey season and we had a date with some gobblers south of the Indiana border! This would be Anna’s first adventure into the dark woods in the early morning hours in hopes of bagging a wily old spring gobbler.
Will and his first turkey Spring of 2010
The car was filled with excitement as we made the 1:15 minute trip in the dark from our home in Southern Indiana to a beautiful 300 acre farm located in Hancock Co. Kentucky. Will couldn’t help but recount to Anna the events surrounding the opening morning of the Indiana youth season in 2010. It was April 17th, 2010 when Will bagged his first spring gobbler around 7:30am. I can already tell my son is going to be a great hunter! Not because he has harvested a truck load of game already, but because he sure can tell a great story. Story telling is a requirement if you are going to be a really good hunter, right?
We arrived on the property at 6:15 am, roughly forty five minutes before first light. We quietly tip toed down a log road which leads to a three acre field that is secluded amongst the hard woods. What a spot! We had enough gear on our backs to supply a small army I am for sure. A ground blind, calls, three chairs, video and camera equipment, a tripod, turkey vest, two decoys, shooting sticks, and did I mention two 20 gauge shot guns hoping to bring the sound of thunder to this farm shortly after first light!
As darkness gave way to first light the woods began to magically come alive. It is one of my favorite times to be in God’s creation. Then, without warning, a thunderous gobble broke the morning stillness and literally shook the three of us out of our chairs. Man this bird is close I exclaimed! Will was the first to spot him. He was roughly 60 yards away in full strut way up in a pine tree. We had literally walked right under that bird on the way to our setup!
Before we go any further simply watch this short video and you will get a vision of what we experienced that morning! Keep in mind this is Anna’s first turkey hunt!
Well, needless to say it was an exciting morning. I couldn’t believe it when I heard Anna say “I don’t want a jake.” In my mind I was thinking “you whaaaattttt.” I thought for sure she would shoot pretty much anything that walked in front of our ground blind that morning. Will was ready to pull the trigger and I would have let him. I was hoping for a double on film, but it was her call and Miss Anna knew what she wanted and it wasn’t a jake. She wanted a wily old longbeard!
Later that morning I gave my wife Lisa a call to practice my story telling abilities. Remember, every great hunter is a story teller, right? As I recounted the events of the morning to her, Lisa made this brilliant statement “I hope she is that picky with her men one day.” Wow, my wife sure has a way with words and the ability to cut straight to the point doesn’t she? Those words have stuck with me during the days since our hunt and I couldn’t agree with my wife more. Lisa’s words have not only caused me to pray harder for Anna’s future, but the future of all four of my daughters.
Anna in a wedding in 2008
My prayer is they will first know Jesus and desire his fellowship more than anything! Then when God is ready, I pray they will seek companionship in a man who also has made his fellowship with Jesus the top priority in his life. A man who understands what it means to treat his wife in accordance with Ephesians 5:25 which says “Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it.”
Another prayer I have is that I will do my part to model Ephesians 5:25 for them as I love their mother and my wife of 13 years. I am not perfect by a long shot, only their heavenly Father is, but I hope they see the deep love that I have for each of them even in the midst of my failures.
Finally, one day in the not so distant future, I hope to hear those sweet whispers outside my bedroom door again. “Is it time yet” “Is he the one” “Oh I am not sure” “Daddy are you awake…I just want to talk.”
Just think, all of this learned while on a turkey hunt with my oldest son and my “Picky little girl.”
Since a young age Pastor Paul has had a love for the outdoors. After he became a Christian in October of 1994 God began to use the great outdoors to demonstrate to Pastor Paul the eternal truths of scripture. In this section he will share some of these thoughts via written or audio devotionals.