I was swiftly being sucked down the river without a paddle. As my head bobbed in and out of the quick current I wondered how in the world I had gotten here. I remember my dad asking me if I wanted to go fishing. But I’m not talking about the here and now; I’m talking about how I’d gone fishing only to end up like I always do; once again I was in over my head, without so much as a clue to help me get out of this one.
From somewhere in the distance I could hear my dad screaming, “Let go of the pole.”
The pole, that’s it. All I have to do is let go of the pole and I’ll be fine. Whatever it is pulling me down river is only doing so because I won’t let go of my brand new fishing pole. The thing cost me ninety dollars. I wasn’t about to lose my latest investment. I had to work two shifts in order to afford it and all dad can do is to tell me to ‘let it go.’
I’ve heard those words before, only I believe the phrase was, ‘Let go and let God.’ But I knew I could do this on my own; if only I could figure out a way. I needed time and so instead of letting my beloved shiny new pole go, I struggled to come up with the strength to some how fight against this freaky force of nature I was caught up in. I was bound and determined to fight the good fight on my own.
That’s when it happened.
I went under sucking up a great big gulp of frigid spring water and nearly drowned. ‘Nearly,’ being the operative word. While I was struggling to break the surface, flapping around like a fish caught in a net my mind flashed to a childhood Sunday school, bible story; Jonah and the Whale.
With no time to ponder the meaning behind the story I switched gears and set my mind to the cause at hand.
That’s when I heard it.
Clear as bells ringing on Sunday morning, in a husky, gruff voice I was commended to stand up. I was so taken back I did as I was told, found the river bed, planted my feet firmly and stood up.
Wouldn’t you know I broke the surface of the water, gasped for breath, spit up the water still threatening to choke the life out of me and realized in the midst of my struggle I had let go of my beloved fishing pole.
Sometimes it’s easier to look up and ask for help when you’ve reached the bottom. Sometimes God commends our attention instead of whispering suggestions. And sometimes we need to ‘let go and let God.’
I wasn’t willing to let go of my precious fishing pole and so God did the only thing He could. I choose my life in the instant I had gone under and by doing so I choose His will.
So when people ask if I’ve gone fishing I tell them, “Sure have. In fact I lost my pole doing so but gained God in the process.”
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