This has been a dilemma, a concern, and a question raised many times by our followers, our staff, and show personnel. I aim to attempt to answer it from my point of veiw to help you understand. First of all, let me tell you how hard it is to skip a Sunday at a show. 1st: Money –> I am saying goodbye to literally tens of thousands of dollars in sales of people who would purchase our DVDs and gear at shows on Sunday. 2nd: Threats -> We have been verbally assaulted and threatened by show owners/directors on multiple occasions. We have left being told we are not welcome back on one occasion. 3rd: Missing People -> Each year our loyal fans come back for the latest Season and we miss 20-30% of them who were not aware we did not attend Sunday. I value those relationships and those people.
With all those reasons, why do I choose to pack up Saturday night and head home giving up money and relationships and harming future potential? Here is why:
My God has given me so much in this life. I write with emotion as I say this and I cannot think of a more blessed human being in this world than myself. A wonderful wife and family, a large home, great hunting land, multiple successful businesses, and a schedule that I decide. So if my God gives me all this, I read in his word, “Of whom much is given, much shall be required”. That begs the question of course -> What is required? God makes it clear throughout his Word that he gives us 6 days to labor and 1 day to rest. Why then would I make an exception on 12 of the 52 Sundays of the year to not rest, but work my butt off selling movies. I just can’t. If I “deny God before men, he will deny me.” He is not a harsh or hateful God. He is a loving God who has blessed me beyond my imagination who has given me guidelines to follow and glorify Him.
My Church needs me, or rather I need them. I need to be with my church family on Sunday. I need to hear God’s Word preached. Some people say they can better hear God from a treestand. I don’t deny his presence there. In fact, my closest moments to God are the moments of quiet in a deer stand and he has taught me more lessons in humility from a tree. BUT, on that one day in seven, he has reserved a place in the pew for me. My Sunday School class consists of 7 inner city children. I get one opportunity for one hour to teach them. Is thousands of dollars in DVD sales more important than their souls? And in that one hour I get a little window into a little life with no consistency, no morals, and little hope. They soak in the gospel and I learn with them the simple lessons the Bible teaches us.
My Family is my backbone. I work hard the entire week and I love my business. I hunt long hours and I work long hours. As I drop into bed Saturday night after spending a weekend on my feet while talking whitetails, Michigan, and hanging out with our fans at the show -> I look forward to Sunday and spending it with family. I get to be with my wife the entire day. I get to go to my Grandparents every Sunday lunch where our family of 20+ gathers to share, laugh, talk and guess how many meatballs are in the pot of soup (this week it was exactly 200 venison meatballs). I wouldn’t give up that day each week for anything, and frankly there is no other day that could replace it.
Do I occasionally think of the benefits of attending shows on Sunday? Yes. Do I think of having my employees be there instead of me? Yes. But they need to have a day of church, rest, and family each week too. I do not condemn any of you who choose differently. I do not condemn those who attend the show on Sunday nor do I condemn those who exhibit on Sunday. I just know after five years of questions from others, I need to answer why I choose for Venture Creations and Michigan Whitetail Pursuit to not exhibit on the Lord’s day. I hope this does not offend anyone and I pray you all find the value in Sunday, that one day that God gives us to be different from the rest.