When I went through my divorce, I wondered if I'd ever find that special someone again. The old phrase "plenty of fish in the sea" was tossed at me from all angles. I often felt like a guppy thrown into a sea of sharks. At other times I felt like a canned sardine, stuck in my stifled existence until the right person came along and opened the can to free me. Then there were the times that someone looked "catchy" on the outside but inside he was a can of worms. Boy, did that make for a slimy situation.
In church one Sunday, two other single women and I were sitting together, and we opened our bulletin to find out the sermon for that day. We read, "Follow Me, and I will make you catchers of men!" We giggled because, for us single women, that had a double meaning.
We definitely didn't want to miss this sermon! If there was something the pastor knew that we didn't, we sure wanted to know. Previously I had tried every imaginable "bait" suggested to catch the right fish, and I was only capable of reeling in problems, fixer-uppers and maybe a boot as they high-tailed it out of sight! So I prepared to hear some "professional" angler advice.
What I learned was deep and profound: There was a very wise Fisherman who knew exactly how to net the best fish in the sea. He didn't use newfangled equipment or radar sensors; He didn't resort to extreme measures; He didn't brag about the big one that got away or even how many of them jumped into His boat. What He did was tell people stories of unconditional love, faith, hope, healing and joy. He taught others how to cast their nets of care out into the dark sea, and when they pulled those nets back in they would be full of eager fish wanting to jump in the boat and go where the Fisherman led them. These fish were smart for going with the Fisherman, because they knew that He would take care of them and lead them upstream to a better place-not up a creek without a paddle!
I finally realized that as long as I looked to Jesus, the Master Fisherman, He would help me muddle through the murky waters of life. And when I feel I've been washed up on the lonely shore, I know His love will come take me into the sea of His presence.
Now, about catching fish, Lord. There's something fishy at the end of my pole, and I need You to help me with my casting. Better yet, I'd like to give You my pole and let You make the catch. After all, You are the Master Fisherman.
Kim Ousley is a freelance writer and single mom from Anderson, Ind., who is studying journalism at Anderson University. Her article previously appeared in Single Parent Family/Focus on the Family Magazine.
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