FISHERS OF MEN
“Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death…”
The young man looked around the graveside at all the people that had come to pay his grandfather their last respects. He was reminded of a time when he was no more than six or seven.
He watched as his grandfather hung a sign on the front of the door of his house that said ‘Gone Fishing’. “Grandpa, why do you put that sign on your door every time you leave the house?” he asked just like he always did because he liked to hear the story just one more time.
Grandpa chuckled. “When I was a boy, no older than you are right now I was sitting in church with my parents, grandparents, and my sister Emma Sue. I loved to fish. Sometimes I would go with my dad, but mostly I would go with my granddad.
“Well my ears perked right up when the pastor titled his message ‘Gone Fishing.’ But it wasn’t any ordinary kind of fishing. He used the text from Matthew. I’ll never forget that sermon as long as I live. He said that people are like fish. They like what they do, and don’t want to change. When a person goes fishing they take the fish out of the cozy place they’ve been and put them in a place that is not so cozy. For a fish to be out of water is deadly.
“Jesus said we are to be fishers of men. We are to take men out of their cozy place, just like catching fish. We are to introduce them to Jesus, the place where they die to the things of this world, and make them all brand new again so they can live in the world but not be part of it.”
Grandpa looked down at me a smile on his face and a fishing pole in his hand. “So, Peter, are you ready to go catch some fish?”
I held up my fishing pole a broad smile on my face. “You betcha, Grandpa.”
I was brought back to the here and now when the minister said “Amen.” I stood motionless for a moment before I went over to the coffin and laid granddad’s fishing pole across the top. “I won’t forget what you taught me, Grandpa. I’m going out to catch me some fish.”
Matthew 4:18 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.
19 And he saith unto them, Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.
20 And they straightway left their nets, and followed him.
21 And going on from thence, he saw other two brethren, James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, in a ship with Zebedee their father, mending their nets; and he called them.
22 And they immediately left the ship and their father, and followed him.
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