Daily Devotional for Sportsmen...
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Saturday, June 1, 2013
June 1, 2013
Today's Photograph . . . . God Has Called Each Of Us To Be Fishers Of Men (Janet B)
Bible Study Verse
Luke 5: 8-11
When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at Jesus' knees and said, "Go away from me, Lord; I am a sinful man!" For he and all his companions were astonished at the catch of fish they had taken, and so were James and John, the sons of Zebedee, Simon's partners. Then Jesus said to Simon, "Don't be afraid; from now on you will catch men." So they pulled their boats up on shore, left everything and followed Him. (NIV)
At that moment I quickly realized I had no idea what these critters looked like without being battered and deep fried.
The directive had gone down to me and a couple of the other boys from church to haul in the net and dump everything in the tray then start sorting them. "Get the shrimp first then worry about everything else. Don't let'em dry out." As I quickly surveyed what the other guys were pulling out I realized that the grey, spindly-legged critters were what we were after. Sure looked different with all the other parts attached.
After we had finished the first tray and lowered the net for another pass, I had occasion to survey everything else we'd caught. Blue crabs, puffer fish, squid, turtles, and all assortments of other fish were represented; creatures I'd only ever seen in books or heard spoken of by others who had fished the Gulf waters. Some we kept. Most got thrown back.
Perhaps, it was the "unexpected" factor that overwhelmed Peter the most. Certainly, it had been the awesomeness of the event. Seeing recently barren waters suddenly produce enough fish to nearly sink two commercial fishing boats would be enough to both simultaneously excite and overwhelm anyone. But, how reassuring it was for these guys to hear Jesus tell them in effect: "You did good and I need you for the fishing I've got planned. Follow Me."
Their response to this affirming encouragement more than sums up both their character and commitment. Today we might refer to this characteristic as coachable or trainable. In any event, did you notice how they reacted to their prescribed change in vocation? No questions. No "what abouts" or "have-you-considereds." They simply left their possessions, equipment, livelihoods, jobs, incomes, career-plans, pensions, and families right there on the beach. Then they followed Jesus.
It's an amazing thing to me how in such a short and immediate period of time, Peter and company went from responding to "fish over there" to "follow me wherever." No questions. No hesitation.
God has called each of us to be fishers of men. He has provided us with the "nets" of our friends, life experiences, jobs, neighborhoods, sportsmen's clubs, church outreaches, and school functions. However, He wants all the fish in our nets, not just the shrimp, the pretty ones, the record setters, or the rare and uncommon ones. He wants them all. He needs us to regularly gather in our nets, not worry about the sorting, and focus on the saving. We need to be concentrating on how to lead them to the Master Fisher.
"Do you know what you're looking for? Don't let'em dry out."
Sportsmen's Tip of the Day
Cast nets from 8 - 12' in diameter are particularly useful when preparing for a day offshore as they can be used to catch shad and shrimp which are favorite bait for many of the Gulf water game fish. While it takes some time beforehand to learn how to cast them cleanly, the effort invested pays for itself in free bait.