God Likes to Talk to Men When They’re Fishing
As a kid in the summertime, I would go to one of those old school Wesleyan/Methodist churches with my grandparents and learn kids songs from long ago, and a few Gaither penned songs for kids while children’s church was going down. It was always a delightful thing to do in between talking about the most recent PG-13 videos I had seen at my grandparents the night before (my parents never let me watch PG-13, but my grandparents would) and the most recent Altanta Braves games, and how cool Ryan Klesko and Ron Gant were. With the recent release of GVB’s “I Am a Promise”, I was reminded about a few of the songs I had not heard in ages. A couple of years ago, I finally understood what one of those songs meant for me.
As particular as I am about theology, I’m always willing to hear someone out if they have at least thought about it in depth and articulate it in a reasonable fashion. Since I’m employed by a traditional Baptist church, I don’t have to worry about it as much, and they usually ask me questions about stuff. I don’t know everything, that’s for sure. But that doesn’t mean I’m not diligent. And sometimes I feel like half of the songs geared towards kids didn’t meet my theological criteria. But that’s just because I’m an idiot.
In remembering “God Likes to Talk to Little Boys While They’re Fishing”, I realized just how important it was to my own spiritual growth and personal witnessing.
An friend of mine had been dabbling with various drugs in high school. Cocaine, steroids, LSD, prescription pills, (and obviously the recreation drug of choice…reefer). But after high school, it had taken on a life of its own. Without being narrow minded, I succumbed to the possibility that there may be many reasons why. Insecurity. Loneliness. Approval. Selfishness. You name it, we could bundle it up and apply it to this guy. I was back in my hometown for a couple of weeks, and when I got there I got separate news that huge figure in my life had died. The funeral was in 3 days and I had to drive a couple of hours. For whatever reason, I decided to contact this friend of mine that was hooked on drugs. If you know anything about Cocaine, it’s deadly addicting, and I wanted to reach out. I wanted to show him through my personal joy and satisfaction in Christ that there is a lot more to live for. I asked him to go fishing with me.
We sat on the bank of a neighbors pond, on the edge of the woods, moving from spot to spot and semi-disgruntled about the fish that weren’t biting. But fishing is peaceful. Conversation moved from fishing to an addiction to drugs. That’s not your everyday transition of topics. But I knew it would come up. I had been one of those friends, experimenting alongside him with some of the foolish things rebellious teenagers do, but never too much, never all the way…and never this. But I had changed. I had my feet set on the Rock. And he knew it. He wanted what I had. I had joy that he didn’t have. When you begin to sell your cars to feed your need for Cocaine, that’s not exactly joy. That’s building your house on the sand. He was getting swept away by sin’s furious wind. And right then, the Holy Spirit prompted me to do something that seemed awkward at first. With a fishing pole in my hand, I invited him to this funeral a couple of hours away to a man he had never met. It was the funeral of a mega church pastor, so I knew the gospel would be preached.
He went with me and the gospel was preached. He was astounded by the man’s life and legacy. He soon “re-dedicated” his life to Christ, dropped the drugs, and began living clean. It lasted for a while. Not to sound like it was anything I did, but God did it on the banks of a quiet, secluded pond when the fish weren’t biting.
I think the “Jesus” thing wore off soon, and he got back into old habits. But every couple of years when I talk to him, he still brings up that funeral, and that local fishing trip, where God worked in a weird way and began talking to me. I bring this up, not only because I now own a copy of “I Am a Promise”, but also because today is his birthday.
There is a pond in front of my house. I think I might throw a cast or two and listen if He speaks. God even likes to talk to grown men when they’re fishing. Tonight, they might be biting.
God likes to talk to little boys when they’re fishing. That seems to be the time boys listen best……….