Trophy Bag


A cloudy sky hung low over the slate grey waters of the Pacific Ocean. The verdure of the shoreline glowed in the subdued atmosphere and fled by as our chartered Panga sped toward shore. It had been an enjoyable day, but long. Our lines were in the water, but it had been some time since our lures had any takers.
My sleepy absorption in the gorgeous Azuero coastline was suddenly interrupted by the distinctive “braazzing” of a spinning reel. The boat sprang to life as Arthur and Rick called for me to take the pole. Once I had the stout rod in hand the fight began. The struggle was fierce. Either it was fighter or it was three times larger than anything I’d caught that day. The captain looked at the flex of the pole and hollered, “You’ve got a real fish now!” I struggled to find the rhythm, “pull up … reel down.” Something large crested momentarily above the boat’s wake and voices called out the suspected species of the finned warrior. With every instant of battle, my anticipation mounted. What dastardly denizen of the deep was I fighting? The spinner was visible close behind the boat as I finally started to feel that I had gained the upper hand. The deck hand bent over the back of the boat obscuring my view. Finally, he turned revealing the glittering specimen. The result of my valiant struggle? A fifty-three-pound plastic bag of sea water.
Thankfully that wasn’t the only catch of the day. We took home four very tasty Yellow-fin Tuna. I also caught something else … my first sight of dolphins and whales! I’m so thankful for those experiences and the friendship of men like Rick and Arthur. Joking about my “trophy bag,” Rick quipped, “Things aren’t always what they seem.” So true … sometime we fight for things that we believe will satisfy, only to come up empty.
Isaiah 55:1-3
asks, “Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy?” The passage teaches that the one true need of man can be obtained without money. Men and women can have a relationship with their Creator simply by asking.