At 5:37 my feet were on the floor, my head out of bed. Fishing was first on my morning agenda. My 80 years young fishing accomplice would arrive before 7. There were things to do, a Bible to read, a breakfast to eat and then a boat to hook up for a tow to the lake. My optimism for a good catch was high. A dense fog had developed overnight, there would be low light conditions. This usually means better fishing.
We arrived at the lake minutes later. We were soon on the water headed for our first fishing spot. The reality of how thick the fog was, came moments later when my never fail navigation by sight system failed. In the fog, that was me-physically and mentally. We were already past the channel to the second lake, location of our first fishing spot!
We got our bearings and had a time of quiet but serious fishing on the water. We caught some fish. Something else happened: our souls were refreshed. Hold it! Don’t people go fishing to catch fish? It’s about catching fish, isn’t it?
For me it is. The catch is always a thrill and made better because it’s unexpected. The meal after is mouth-watering, even healthy! But can fishing be soul refreshing?
Yes. Today it was especially refreshing to my soul. I’ll admit this-without fear of harming my masculinity.
First, the deep quiet caused by the fog impressed me with my smallness. As the fog “burned” away and sunlight began to overcome the gloom of fog, my eyes could see the details of our surroundings. The blue patches of sky, a herd of cows silhouetted on a hill, the dancing ripples on the water. The effect of the multiple morning bird calls accumulated in my heart. As we fished a sense of wellness came upon me. My friend and I spoke little. There was no need. Occasional glimpses into the clear water reminded me we floated on another world, a watery one. A single loon flew overhead on a mission, a fish meal mission. As we floated near shore, the forest at the edge of the lake contained dark shadows and thousands of shades of mid-summer green. We knew we were experiencing a blessing. And we thought we were on a fish meal mission like the loon.
Briefly this morning my mind went to the phrase in Psalm 23, He leads me beside quiet waters. That happened, this morning. The quiet waters caught the attention of my soul. It was God quieting the waters, He made the fog. He provided a friend to experience this morning with. Then my mind began to reflect on the rest of the first verses of Psalm 23. “I shall not want.” There are many days when wanting things burdens my heart. The quiet waters, the fog, the birds, the companionship of a friend took wanting away. God patiently restored my soul, this morning. I thought it was about fishing. God’s plans are always best and better. The Lord is my Shepherd. This sheep is grateful.
The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul. He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.