Convicting article to say the least…
A group existed who called themselves fishermen. Week after week, month after month, and year after year, those who called themselves fishermen met in meetings where they talked about their call to fish, and how they might go about fishing. They carefully analyzed what fishing meant, urged fishing as an occupation, and declared that fishing is always to be a primary task of fishermen.
These same fisherman built large, beautiful buildings for local fishing headquarters. Their plea was that everyone should be a fisherman and that every fisherman should fish. The headquarters was even built in an area with waters all around. In truth, the whole area was surrounded by streams and lakes filled with fish. And the fish were hungry.
Over the years, courses were offered on the needs of fish, the nature of fish, how to recognize different fish and how to approach and catch the fish.
The fisherman built large printing houses to publish their fishing guides. Presses were kept busy day and night to produce materials solely devoted to fishing methods and equipment. Meetings were arranged to talk about fishing.
Notwithstanding all this activity, it was noted that fisherman themselves did not fish, they plead for fishing. The boards didn’t fish, they planned about fishing. The teachers didn’t fish, they explained fishing. The expert speakers didn’t fish. The preached about fishing.
Many of the fisherman made sacrifices and put up with all kinds of difficulties. Few were well paid for their service on the boards and training centers. Some lived nearby the waters and suffered the smell of dead fish. They were ridiculed by some who made fun of the fishermen clubs and the fact that they claimed to be fishermen, yet never fished.
They had doubts and spoke down to anyone who felt that it was of little use to attend their meetings and talk about fishing. After all…they were talking about the One who said; “Follow me and I will make you fishers of men.”
It came about one day that someone made an outlandish suggestion that those who did not fish were not actually fishermen, no matter how much they claimed to be. Someone actually asked, “Is someone a fisherman if year after year he never caught, or even attempted to catch a fish? If he is not fishing, he is not following.”
And those who called themselves fishermen, and their boards and committees and training centers and speakers were all very hurt by the question.