Thursday, May 05, 2005

Fishing ...

A couple weeks ago the boys and I got up early and went fishing in a nearby stream on our way to Mass. Thomas Becket, our youngest boy (5), caught his first fish - a 6 inch bream (sunfish for y'all from the Northeast). The rest of us came up empty. Thomas' fish is getting bigger and bigger as time goes on. First he wanted to have it for dinner for himself and his oldest sister when she returns from college next week. Then he wanted to feed the whole family with it. Now he is talking about feeding all our friends and family who are coming to a celebration we are planning for late June. His hopes are mighty high for that little fish.

Last evening I was home alone with Thomas Becket and our youngest, Bernadette (3) . We decided to give that stream another go. We fished for about an hour. I had gotten some serious nibbles repeatedly in one particular spot - but couldn't reel him in. Once I almost had him. Well, I am not much of fisherman in general. Usually when I do go, I spend so much time untangling the kids' lines or baiting hooks, etc. that I never get much fishing done anyway. But last night was different. For some reason, catching that fish became somewhat important to me. (Subconsciously I think it was symbolic to me of being a good provider - maybe becase we had a fish/rice/egg concoction for lunch?).

Anyhow, after about an hour it was about time to leave - the kids needed bed. That fish had eaten my worm - the rest of the bait was in the car, somewhere downstream. It was too far to leave the kids and too much of project to get all the way there and then return. So reluctantly, I decided wrap things up. I was helping Thomas reel in his line when Bernadette said, "Daddy, there's a worm!"

Sure enough, coming out of the ground was a nightcrawler. I scooped it up and instantly baited my hook. As I cast into that spot where that fish had tormented me all evening, I said to Bernadette, "See, God has provided us a worm and now He will provide for us a fish." (I wish my actual faith was a great as my words. My real attitude was more like, "But Lord we have fished all night and caught nothing ....") But sure enough, the fish bit and was hooked within a few seconds. We reeled him in and thanked God.

While this may seem a small thing - for the last few days this is how things have been going - God encouraging my weak faith.

From the small holding in Bethune ...

Oremus pro invicem!

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