LEARNING TO FISH

 And Jesus, walking by the sea of Galilee, saw two brethren, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers. And he saith unto them, Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men. And they straightway left their nets, and followed him. Matthew 4:18-2

          In the early 60’s a family friend gave me a short stack of hunting and fishing magazines. It was great! Stories of people getting their elk or deer, running from bears, even one story of a little girl (I think she was around 6 or 7 years old) who ran out of bait so she put a blueberry on her hook and caught a big trout! 

          It was exciting reading and I thumbed through them until they were falling apart. One of my favorite articles was that of a man living somewhere in Scandinavia who fished every day of the year. And he almost always caught fish. Even when others, who were very good fishermen failed, he came home with something. 

          The writer of the article met with the man and asked why he was so dedicated to the fishing craft. His response was that in order to catch fish any time of the day or year, one must fish often. You had to learn when different kinds of fish would bite, what bait or lure they would bite on, the best time of day, best kind of weather to catch – in essence you had to know how to fish! 

          “My brother and I are fishermen. We don’t know a lot about politics or religion, just fishing. First time I ever heard His name, my brother came down and said, ‘You just have to meet this man.’ 

          So I went. So, I met Him. He looked at me and said, ‘Come on along. Come on with me.’ There was just something about Him. There was just something about Him. We gave it all up, we gave up the boats, the nets, the fishing. Just went with Him. And I’ve been with Him ever since.”  

(From the album “Alleluia A Praise Gathering for Believers” by Bill and Gloria Gaither and Ron Huff 1973. This was the narration leading into that timeless song, “Jesus, Jesus, Jesus. There’s just something about that Name!”) 

          These fishermen of Galilee did give it up. They left what they knew and followed Jesus for over 3 years. They were among the original 12 that went where He went, heard what He preached, saw the miracles and after He rose from the dead, they became witnesses of Him and indeed they became fishers of men! 

          We are all called to be fishers of men and like the man from the magazine article, we need to learn how to be fishermen and that starts with prayer. 


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