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Monday, July 21, 2008

Fishing Those Minnesota Lakes

Hey all-

Tomorrow in class, we are all doing a 1-3 minute object lesson, so I thought I'd give you a sneak preview. You'll need to imagine me holding a fishing reel. Just the reel. Got it? Okay, read on...

After class ends up this week, I begin two weeks of vacation here in Minnesota, the land of 10,000 lakes. And one of the things I love to do on a Minnesota vacation more than anything else is to get out on one of those lakes for some fishing.

So I have brought with me this reel. And if you had never seen or heard of fishing before, I could probably convinced you that this is a complete and whole creation. It has moving pieces and different levers here and there. I could attach a lure to the line here and throw it out with my arm, and even reel it back in. And you would think that this, by itself, is enough.

But you've seen fishing, or you've been fishing, and you know that I am missing something. My dad is coming out, and since he has more room, and has extras, he's bringing the fishing rod. If you know anything about fishing, you know that a rod isn't a nice bonus, or something cool to add to my reel. You know that the rod and the reel were designed for each other. By itself, this reel has limited value, because it was designed with the rod in mind. The two were created to go together.

And so also, we are often convinced, especially in our western mindset, that our faith, our personal faith, is enough. That is stands alone. But we were designed with something else in mind, because the God who created and designed us is a God of community. He exists in community himself, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, and we were made with a community in mind. Call it church, call it a small group, call it a gathering, or even call it a fella-ship; God has created us for one another. It's not optional, not a nice bonus of the Christian life. We were designed and created with community, God's community, in mind.

And the awesome part is that when the reel of our faith and the rod of community are put together in the hands of a loving God, then we are extremely effective at fishing.

"All of you together are Christ's body, and each of you is a part of it." I Cor. 12:27
"Come, follow me, and I will show you how to fish for people!" Mark 1:17

Journey on, friends,

Nick

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