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Daily Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

"Fishing Limits"

June 1, 2007

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And he answered them, "Whoever has two tunics is to share with him who has none, and whoever has food is to do likewise." Luke 3: 11

Some people fish for fun. John Burke Yearwood, of Greensboro, Georgia, isn’t one of them.

At the age of 86, John had become passionate about his fishing, elevating his hobby into an art. Having cast his lines into the Oconee River for years, John knew the places where the fishing was best, and he kept those places a secret.

That’s why, when a couple of tournament fishermen got to close to his lines, John did what any self-respecting angler would do. He picked up his rifle and shot at them. John fired a few warning shots across the bow of their boat to warn them off. Then, he placed a shot through the arm of one of his competitors.

Last week’s Associated Press article didn’t say just why John carried a gun when he went fishing. I suppose he believes in having a well-equipped tackle box. The article did offer an explanation as to why John plugged the other angler. Greene County Sheriff, Chris Houston said, “John has been putting his fishing lines out in the area for decades. He was jut trying to warn (them) away from the fishing lines.”

John’s tactic worked. The anglers retreated, called for help, and had John arrested.

When Jesus said the owner of two coats and a surplus of food should share them with others less fortunate, He didn’t mention fishing spots. While John and others of a similar mindset might surmise from this that the Lord didn’t wish to include anything as precious as a guarded fishing spot, I think just the opposite. I think Jesus meant to include everything. True, I might laugh at John for refusing to share his fishing spot. In all probability, he would laugh at me for being overly protective of something that I consider to be special.

Think for a moment. What do you have that is so precious that you could not begin to think of sharing it with someone in need? You don’t have to give your answer out loud. It might be embarrassing. Even so, without a great deal of time invested, you can quickly put your finger on the item(s).

Now, with that item in mind, ask yourself, “What did Jesus hold back from me?” His time was at the command of those who were sick in body and soul. Each one of His days was committed to resisting Satan’s temptations and obeying the Law. His coat was even taken from Him and used as a prize in a game of chance. Jesus held nothing back, not even His life, so we might be washed of our sin and freed from damnation. He practiced what He preached, and then encouraged us to do likewise.

THE PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, be merciful to me a poor, miserable, SELFISH sinner. Forgive my failure to love as You loved me. Create in me a new heart. Give me a new spirit that allows me, in Your name, to do as much as I can to help as many as I can. Amen.

Today's Bible Readings: Psalms 39-41    John 12:27-50

Change Their World. Change Yours. This changes everything.

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