As the December weeks became cooler and busier, I found myself with less and less opportunity to get out in my local pond to try and hook-up with one final big bass of 2009. Sure, I kept myself entertained by recording Bill Dance fishing shows and reading through Bassmaster and Bassin’ magazines and even dove into a great book called Kayak Bass Fishing. But it just wasn’t the same as wetting a line. To kindle the cabin fever even more, I had acquired some new, much “needed” recent lures and equipment to ensure that my boys and I would enjoy hooking up with bass for many months to come. The only problem was Mother Nature wasn’t cooperating.
January had brought us some severe cold weather and many of the ponds were frozen over. In the middle of the month though, I was bound and determined to get out on an afternoon when the mercury was to rise above 40. I packed up all my gear, tossed the kayak in the back of 4Runner and off I went, with the attitude that even if I didn’t catch a fish, it would be great just to get out. You see, I’m a newbie to bass fishing, but I was motivated and passionate. With high hopes, I arrived at the honey hole only to find over 80% of it was still frozen.
Was a little frozen ice going to stop me? No way! I had a newly found passion for fishing and I was going fishing! I had to break 6 feet of ice off the shore, just to get the kayak in the water. I kid you not – I broke 6 feet of ice and walked in freezing water, just to get the kayak in movable water. As I finally got the kayak off the ice slab, I rolled out of the cove to find the whole middle of the lake was still iced over. Yes, I had a passion for fishing. I kept breaking ice with my paddle until I could finally toss a jerk bait to a spot that would allow it to sink rather than bouncing off the ice like a rubber ball.
What came to my mind while sitting out in the pond listening to the ice crackle, as almost to laugh at me, I wondered if I was this passionate about my faith. Would I break through ice and walk in freezing water to share the gospel and the love of Jesus Christ? The fish in the pond had never loved me, never clothed me, never gave me food, never gave me two wonderful boys or a loving wife, never gave me their mercy or loving grace, but here I was breaking ice to be with them….would I do the same for my Savior? Pastor Greg English has said before, “you have to love fishing more than catching.” Naturally, he isn’t talking about fishing as in the terms as gills and fins, but the same applies. Thanks to the men of the Cool Spring Outdoor Ministry, I am finding that passion for Christ. Their love and direction is helping ensure that I don’t become more passionate about fishing than I am about Christ. Thanks guys. - SV