This Sunday, our youth went fishing! Special thanks to the Kleckley's for hosting us at their pond! We had a great time of fishing for bream and bass and also had some great fellowship! Addison Corley caught 8 or 9 fish with several others like Chancellor Cotten and Jamie Hunt catching nearly as many! Brandon Keisler and Kameron Keisler caught several, too. Jordan Sommer was the first to catch a fish! I even managed to catch a bass!
We kicked off our fishing with a quick devotion on Matthew 4:19 and the fact that Jesus calls us "fish" for people or "lure" others to the blessings of a Christian life!
Personally, I don't know that much about modern day fishing ... but I do know that certain types of bait attract certain types of fish. I mean, it seems to me that one wouldn't go fishing in the ocean with a cricket or in a pond with shrimp. And, I do know a little about fish because as a biology major in college, we studied these animals! I remember being fascinated by learning that fish, like humans, have all the senses except for the sense of touch. In fact, on a bright sunny day, if a large mouthed bass swims to the top of the water, can see just as well as you and I.
I also do know that when one goes fishing, there are some steps to take to have a successful expereince! First, a fisher-person must be properly equipped. To start one must think about what type of water is being fished? Ocean, freshwater, river? Then, there are bobbers, weights, hooks, different size fishing line, live bait like dough balls, grubs, or cut bait, artificial bait like spinners, plugs, spoons, or jigs to consider.
So when we are fishing for people, it is helpful if we are properly
equipped. To be properly equipped, we need to know something about the Bible
and be active in our relationship with God.
Secondly, I know that when fishing, one must be quiet. This is pretty much common sense, right? Think about when you tap on a fishbowl ... what happens? You see, fish have this part of their body called a lateral line. Lateral lines help a fish sense vibration and movement around them so that they can sense danger or movement around them. So it helps fish know what is going on around them!
So when fishing for people, sometimes we have to be silent too! In other
words, it's not always what we say that might attract someone to Jesus or the
church. It might also be our actions and the things that people see us doing
around them! How we act is so important because people are always watching
us! I challenged the youth to think about how their actions match up with
thier Christian values (i.e. when driving, when on the sports field, when with
their parents or friends).
The third and final thing that I know about fishing is that one has to be patient when fishing! I'm really, really bad at this, by the way! A fisher-person has to be patient because sometimes the fish don't bite right away! Howver, it helps to know some tricks and tips, too. For example, when bream fishing, the sun being out is almost a requirement! And an avid angler knows that the north bank of a pond would get sun the fastest so that would be the place to start fishing. Further, bream beds have a distinctive smell (slighly fishy/slightly sweet - sort of like watermellon). Despite knowing all of these tips and tricks, sometimes the fish just don't bite.
So when fishing for people, patience is a requirement for us! We should be
prepared for disappointment. Sometimes there are lots of people who want to
hear about Jesus and sometimes there are none.