Monday, April 1, 2013

April 1, 2013 - Gone Fishing!

Lately my oldest son has taken up the hobby of fishing during his knee rehab… He has spent quite a bit of time sitting along the banks of lakes, and we even went out on the ocean to try and land the big catch. To this point he has not had a lot of success beyond a few nibbles on the bait; and as a result a bit of frustration – to which I keep reminding him that fishing involves patience and often disappointment.

Today he was able to go out in the everglades and wet his line (along with taking the boat through the canals and seeing a bunch of gators.) it was a cool day but also one in which the fishing turned to sport instead of just hobby. All of the sudden, my son found himself hoping to “out-fish” his siblings that were along for the journey. When they arrived home and I started hearing the “fish stories” it became almost humorous. My 11 yr. old daughter caught the biggest fish; my second son down caught the most fish; and even my 7 yr. old daughter caught more than my oldest son…

He expressed his frustration in that he was attempting to throw his line to the right places and really think like a fisherman but his little sister still caught more by just throwing out her line wherever she could.

There are a few lessons that came to mind when thinking about fishing… especially following this Easter weekend and the focus on the Gospel; after all didn’t Jesus tell us he would “make us fishers of men.” (Mt 4 / Mk 1)

Lesson one is that the fish are not always biting.

Lesson two is that even though I do see great benefit in being informed on best locations, best bait, best weather conditions, etc.; it is still most important to just faithfully throw out the line.

Lesson three is that bait is important; but bait without a hook won’t catch you any fish…

Following Christ’s death and resurrection and before He ascended to heaven He left us orders to preach the Gospel (to fish for men.) I know it can be frustrating when they don’t seem to be “biting” but we need to remain faithful in “throwing out the line.”

And yes I do see great benefit in going to the right places, putting appealing bait on the line, understanding the climate, etc.; yet most important is making sure the “hook” of the Gospel is in the water…

The apostle Paul was great at “baiting” the hook… to the Jew he presented things in a way Jews would understand; to the Greek he presented things in the way that would appeal to the Greeks; I even believe he would have gone in to recreation  centers and played hoops to help reach ballers… (See 1 Cor 9:19-23)

Yet make no mistake about it! His first priority was the “hook” of the Gospel! (See 1 Cor 1:3-4) He understood that persuasive, appealing words were not the answer but that the Gospel (the message of the death and resurrection of our Savior in our stead) is God’s power unto salvation! (See Rom 1:16)

Lesson number 4 I will admit is a bit sarcastic. I have considered telling my son to try “Church-Fishing.” That is where you bait the hook as appealing as possible and just lay it up on the bank and call for the fish to come get it…

If you are gonna fish you gotta go where the fish are!!!!!!!!

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