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Going Fishing

At the risk of taking a metaphor too far...



Look at this video. The fish will do anything to get that bread. They will bite, and climb, and jump out of the water. They crowd each other until there's literally no water left for them to breathe through, because they believe this food is the only food they will ever get. The problem is, those bread crumbs do not keep them full at all. And worse yet, they don't know that all this selfish striving is what's actually going to kill them.


 

Just like there are many varieties of fish in the sea, so are there various types of people we see and befriend.


  • There are a the nominally Christian friends who want to get reacquainted with their own religion. 


  • There are friends new to Christianity who are starting to see how God's love and his will apply to their own lives and who need a lot of discipling. 


  • There are friends who are just eager to learn English and make friends, who are essentially blank slates to religious ideas and very open-minded. 


  • We have a lot of international friends who pass through somewhat quickly. 


  • There are people from different cultures within our country; the North, the Middle and near here in the South. 


  • Finally there are the nominally or seriously Buddhist friends. I have a lot to learn about this religion, but it is very prevalent in the temples and pagodas you see everywhere. Vegan food, yoga, and meditation are very popular here, even amongst expats it seems. 


Our mission team has been busy. Besides getting acquainted with Asian food, culture, and places we have been teaching, learning the language, going to English clubs, inviting friends, visiting friends, and leading Bible studies. The relationships we have been working on for almost two years are starting to show results.


My team and I strive to be fishers of men. But it can be difficult. The fish are used to getting the wrong kind of food source. Works-righteousness is the big one. Buddhism, ritualistic Catholicism, and humanistic moralism seem to satisfy their appetites. Being a faithful family member, a good worker,  or a law-abiding citizen can boost one's morality self-esteem for a while. But, eventually, these empty faith traditions leave the fish craving for more, or fatalistically giving up on the hope of something better. As fishers of men, we try to give real food, generally one fish at a time. The process is slow, and the food doesn't always taste good at first. Maybe the fish come back for more, not because of the food, but because of the fisherman or the convenience. But true food fills and nourishes you, even if you don't know it. And right now, we are starting to fill and nourish people with God's Word every week. 


Carina R.

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