The sun was just beginning to slip down into the horizon as we pulled away from the dock. It seemed as the shadows grew longer it did little to diminish the sweltering Alabama humidity. The wind felt good as we shot out across the water towards one of our favorite spots. It was good to be back in the boat.
It had been a couple years since I’d been able to get out in the boat with my dad and granddad. As we cut through the waves I paused for a moment to think about how many of these rides we’d been on. Trips like this had shaped me. These men had taught me how to fish, how to drive a boat, how to weather a storm. These waters held more memories than I could recount.
We pulled up to the spot and set up. I threw out towards the rock shelf and began to work the bait back through the cover. Suddenly, just like it was supposed to happen, I felt a bump, then another bump. I gripped my rod, ready to set the hook. My heart thumped. There aren’t many other feelings as exhilarating as a good hook set and feeling the fight in the fish transfer up the line into your hands. I eased a couple turns on the reel to tighten up the slack, tensed my forearms muscles and went for it. I snatched back on the rod and reel to set the hook and begin the fight, but my heart sank as I felt the line go limp.
“Dang it!” I snapped.
“Awww man… you gotta let him take it.” My dad laughed as he remarked, “You’ve got to be patient.”
I’ve been fishing with my dad for over thirty years. This kind of “reminding” is very common on our boat. For some reason we make the same comments trip after trip, as if its always everyones first day. We can’t help it, it’s just what you’re supposed to say after someone misses a good bite.
I think it’s the measure of truth in the “reminders” that causes the sting. I knew I should have waited another couple seconds for the fish to completely take the bait. I’ve set the hook thousands of times, yet I’ve probably missed two for every one I catch.
Why do we get in such a rush? Why do we set the hook too soon, or pull the trigger too quickly? In fishing it may simply be the adrenaline or excitement, but in life we can often find ourselves missing opportunities, or even settling for less than the best because we are rushing through our choices.
Patience is a struggle for almost everyone I know, myself included, Sometimes there is no place in life that this is more evident than when we are searching for purpose. There’s a fire burning inside us, a passion for something, but most of the time the process for passion isn’t immediately visible. In these seasons we can become impatient and start jumping the gun.
Can I give you some hope today? God has placed the passion inside you and He has designed you for a purpose, but He will never rush you. In times where I’ve felt pressured to step into something too quickly, I’ve often made a hasty decision and ended up regretting it. Is this true for you?
God will never pressure you into your next step. God doesn’t drive us… He leads us. There is a real difference between being pushed by pressure and being pulled by passion.
We all live with pressure, whether from family situations, job circumstances, or financial decisions. We have to live amidst the pressure every day. The key to living a significant, fulfilled life is learn how to live in the midst of pressure, but to allow God to pull you towards your destiny.
God put the fire of passion inside you and He is leading you towards your destiny. Don’t let pressure push you into making a decision you will regret. Don’t let pressure push you into jumping the gun and settling for something good while God has something great for you.