IKE(this is my favorite pro fisherman. because he break dances on the bow of his boat after a catch.)

I was asked once in a youth ministry class to draw a picture that symbolized my key figures in ministry. Instantly I knew what I would attempt to sketch. I love to fish. No, I seriously love to fish. Not the sitting on the bank beside a cooler of drinks kind of fishing either. I’m talking the standing on the bow of a boat, casting 30-40 times a minute, repeating “here fishy-fishy, for 8 hours a day kind of bass fishing. I had aspirations of actually being a pro and if I had the time and the money it took to start, I believe I could hack it.

I have learned a few things about fishing thanks to my dad.

1. Anybody can catch fish in the spring time.

2. You’re not a great fisherman until you can find fish in any type of weather, temperature, or lake.

I relate this to the church or as a disciple of Christ very easily. In my picture I basically portrayed a guy standing on the bow of a boat and noted the analogy of each piece of equipment. (I actually still have the drawing…maybe I’ll scan and attach it but probably not) I noted the water as the world, the boat as the church, the trolling motor as the Holy Spirit, the hook as the Gospel, and the lure as a creative attractant to Christ. Like I said, anybody can catch fish in the spring or pre spawn to spawning period. I have actually caught fish on a bare hook during this time frame!

Usually during this period an angler is pumped. He has new gear. The latest and greatest lures tempted him to purchase by stating they guarantee to catch fish. I liken this to a new church or a church who decided to take a leap of faith and transition to a cultural driven atmosphere. In the beginning everything is fresh and exciting. Like fish, people are attracted to the buzz. Then the dog days of summer roll around and the fish become lethargic and content. This is where the men are separated from the boys. If you can catch fish during late August then you’re a baller or should I say fisher.

In my sketch I also noted the live well on the boat. You can fill up a boat with fish but if the fish arrive to the weigh in dead, you’re out of luck. Dead fish don’t count. Similarly, the church has the same ordeal. Most churches are either real good at bringing people in or are decent at keeping people “alive”. A great church can do both. If you can’t keep the fish alive, there is no point in fishing in the first place.

Let’s take the emphasis off of the church as a whole and look within our personal ministries. OK so you have brought someone to Christ but have you helped keep them “alive”?