The afternoon had arrived in its thick, muggy, overcast style. We took a little walk over to the neighborhood lake for some family fishing. The boys dug for worms, baited their hooks, and casted out in hopes for fish to bite. The moment the line was in the water, a fish was on and reeled in. As fun as it was to see them excited about their catch and release game, I felt a tiny bit sorry for the fish repeatedly coming back for more worms and yet another hook in the mouth.
As the sun was setting I was reminded about the conversations of the week.
A meeting with one who had fallen into sin and like the fish going for the bait, she was hooked and hurt.
Another friend serving in international student ministry shared frustrations with students who want to be discipled but are not committed to follow through. The worldly bait has them hooked.
A mother awaited the courts ruling this week about the fate of their foster children whom they have loved, sacrificed, and unconditionally invested in, only to find out that the hard work and tears of building a relationship based on Christ has been handed back over to an unhealthy lifestyle. Like the fish, the children are baited to believe that there is “more” in empty promises.
I watch my own children finding joy in the baiting, casting, reeling, and catching…and I ask God to safeguard their hearts from the false happiness that this world screams. In their marriages, relationships with our family, and in temptation. May the hooks that snag them be authentic, Christ bearing relationships, whose motives are pure and not looking out for their own good.