From the Editor

By Matt Evans
March/April 2015

The Nature of New

We picked up a boat last year and my family and I spent most of the summer exploring new places. I can’t tell you how exciting it was to come around the bend of an island for the first time and have the expanse of Prince William Sound open up in front of us. We threw down shrimp pots, we dropped anchor to fish for bottom fish, and we tried to figure out the nuances of trolling for salmon. All in all we spent most of our summer aboard that boat, and memories from it we count among our best.

After winterizing the Eagle VI and putting her away for the dark, cold months, I began to wonder what was it that made the summer so amazing? Although sheer novelty certainly plays into it, everybody likes their new Christmas toy for at least the first fifteen minutes, I think that our desire for new goes deeper.

Creativity: We spent nearly a year searching, and much of the fun was spent in tailoring this boat to our lives. How big did we want it, what kind of motors, how should we configure the cabin: all questions that we got to use our creativity with and work together to figure out. Especially because we did it together, it was a time of extreme excitement and joy.

Challenge: After taking the Coast Guard safety class, reading books and articles about operating safely in the ocean, and scouring the forums for the idiosyncrasies of operating a boat in Alaska, my heart was still pumping the first time I turned the key. The challenge of using this thing that our family had poured so many resources into in a responsible manner was intoxicating. I loved learning everything I could about all aspects of boating: navigation, safety, environmental issues, weather, electrical, and mechanical. Each area was a problem that needed solving, and not just once but sometimes continually.  

Perspective: After spending over fifteen years floating and fishing the rivers of Alaska, hiking in the mountains, and exploring the coastlines, a summer spent in the big waters of the ocean exploring miles of new territory was exciting. But I think it wasn’t only the expanded physical horizons, we saw Alaska from a new perspective. We were using resources, experiencing wildlife, and seeing God’s beautiful creation in an entirely new way.

Broadening: By pushing out into new activities and new situations, we have had the pleasure of meeting many people that we never would have if we kept doing the same thing year in and year out. It has been so much fun to join a new community and get to know people from other walks of life. We are finding that with every new activity we get involved with, we get to meet and appreciate and even love God’s ultimate creation: man.

I love what Archbishop William Temple said about worship:

“Worship is the submission of all of our nature to God. It is the quickening of conscience by His holiness, nourishment of mind by His truth, purifying of imagination by His beauty, opening of the heart to His love, and submission of will to His purpose. All this gathered up in adoration is the greatest expressions of which we are capable.”1

Nowhere in there does the Archbishop mention singing, praying, reading the Bible, or even going to church. He says that worship is the submission of all of our nature to God. So as you push out into new activities, new communities, and new endeavors, remember that it is all part of our worship.  If we can approach everything we do as if we are doing it unto the Lord2, loving Him and people along the way, then the only limits we have are the boundaries of our own imaginations.

Pursue, Explore, Celebrate,



1 - Archbishop WIlliam Temple, quoted by David Watson in I Believe in Evangelism (Grand Rapids, Mich: Eerdmans, 1976),157
2 - Collosians 3:23, New International Version.


About the Author

  • Matt_Evans's picture

    Matt Evans is a contributing editor for Shout! Outdoor Lifestyle Magazine. Matt loves to explore God's great outdoors and discover how God reveals himself in the majesty of His creation. He lives out his adventure in Alaska with his wife and three children. 

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