God wants me to model for Others – Stump the Fishing Guy
“1 In the twenty-fifth year of our exile, at the beginning of the year, on the tenth of the month, in the fourteenth year after the fall of the city—on that very day the hand of the LORD was upon me and he took me there. 2 In visions of God he took me to the land of Israel and set me on a very high mountain, on whose south side were some buildings that looked like a city. 3 He took me there, and I saw a man whose appearance was like bronze; he was standing in the gateway with a linen cord and a measuring rod in his hand. 4 The man said to me, “Son of man, look with your eyes and hear with your ears and pay attention to everything I am going to show you, for that is why you have been brought here. Tell the house of Israel everything you see.” Ezekiel 40:1-4 NIV
“Stump The Fishing Guy.” That was the challenge we read while we were walking in the mall. A long line of kids were waiting to try to “stump the Fishing Guy.”
An elderly gentleman (the Fishing Guy) sat at a small table with a blue permanent pen, a black permanent pen, lots of paper, and a smile on his face. What is the challenge? Each child who wanted to stump the “Fishing Guy”, would take the blue pen and doodle on a large piece of paper. They would draw circles, squares, triangles, or just scribble lines on the paper and the “Fishing Guy”, would finish the drawing. What is the catch? With the additions from the “Fishing Guy”, every drawing the child started would end up having something to do with fishing. Squares would be turned to Blowfish, triangles turned into the front beaks of a fish (or nose or whatever you call the front of a fish’s face), and scribbled lines into fishing hooks, nets, or fishing lines. Whatever anyone drew in front of “Fishing Guy” became the start of a brilliant sketch about fishing!
As I watched as my kids standing in line to draw and stump the “Fishing Guy”, it was like the Lord spoke to me saying that I should be the “God Guy.” “What Lord? I don’t get it.” I felt Him put on my heart, “Ty, you see that man, how no matter what is in front of him, how messy the drawing is, how weird it looks, or how awkward it may appear, his eyes are trained to see something about fishing and to draw it out. I want you to be the kind of guy that no matter what is in front of you, how messy the situations are, how weird things get, or how awkward life may appear, that your eyes are so well trained to see Me at work, and that you can always draw my blessings out.”
That is what the prophet Ezekiel, and many of the other Old Testament prophets were like. They wrote, preached, and argued because though they were exposed to the same thing as everyone of their day, yet they still saw more. While Ezekiel’s eyes witnessed the same devastation that the others in Israel saw at the time, the eyes of Ezekiel always observed more. When others just saw problems Ezekiel saw messages from God. When others saw a church building or temple, Ezekiel saw God actively working. When other saw political unrest, Ezekiel saw God’s message of redemption coming soon.
In the end, I didn’t see anyone really stump the “Fishing Guy”. Sure there were some drawings that took him longer. Sure there were some that he paused to think about. But in the end, everything that came before him was somehow transformed into a fishing image.
I believe that God is saying that in the end, nothing should stump the “God Guy.” Everything that comes before me must somehow be transformed into a lesson and a blessing from God Most High. God never wastes my experiences – good or bad. He wants to use my experiences to make me a more effective minister for Him. He wants me to be the “God Guy” who sees His hand at work and His blessings in every experience I have – good or bad. God wants me to model a life that reflects how to be a “God Guy” through whatever circumstances come my way. The question is whether or not I allow Him to use my experiences to minister to others.
Lord Jesus use my experiences to model for others what a life with You looks like. No I am not perfect (or even near to perfect), but I do want to allow You to use anything and everything I have been through to draw people closer to You. Amen.