INTERVENTION 1

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It was such a somber morning that even the sun could not enliven it with its cheery rays.  Billowing dark, grey clouds finally smothered the golden orb of sunshine into a smudge of watery pale light. Oblivious to the temperament of the heavens, seagulls cawed and squawked against one another, fighting for scraps of breakfast.

However, dawn’s gloomy mood could not match the despondent air that hung around Jonah and sons fishing company. Derelict trawlers with paint flaking off their hull hunkered along their dock like prehistoric mechanical monsters.  Rust and neglect were etched all along the sprawling expanse of the buildings.

Simon Reed and his brother Andy Jonah, eyes red and gritty after an all night fishing expedition washed their nets free of water hyacinth and other detritus. Instead of fish, the nets were heavy with all sorts of flotsam and jetsam. Their all night exercise had yielded nothing. In frustration, Simon walked back to his office, heart heavily anchored with worries.

The family business was failing! As the eldest son of the family, he automatically became the Chief Operating Officer of the business after getting his Masters in Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences while their Father remained at the helm as the CEO/Chairman. The price of fuel to power trawlers and cold rooms had gone up tremendously. The shekel had fallen relative to the dollar thereby affecting the company’s purchasing power to order parts from Japan and the US. Pollution and water hyacinth plants had dealt a wicked blow to trawling. The price of his company’s shares had plummeted heavily in the TAS. Simon felt that he might eventually give in to the hostile takeover being engineered by Pisces LTD, a bigger and greedy rival. He could not believe all the efforts over the years were going to amount to nothing. His father had grown old so the responsibility fell on his shoulders to captain the firm through choppy waters. Without giving voice to his inner thoughts, washing the empty tents this morning was the final straw. The motions of that exercise had made hopelessness embrace him. He saw it as the greatest sign of futility and defeat. He made up his mind to sell to Pisces before he ran the company aground.

He walked into a glass office where the sea could be seen restlessly tossing and turning mirroring the angst in his soul. The room was full of bookshelves spilling over with nautical maps and books. One could see their spines bearing titles like fishing through the ages and so on. A glass box showcased a smorgasbord of harpoons, baits and all kinds of hooks.  Framed pictures of marlin, swordfish, tilapias and other kinds of exotic fish lined the walls. The desk had model galleons, compasses and telescopes. It was quite evident that that Simon Reed was a salty seadog.

As he sat heavily in his swivel leather chair, termites of worry burrowed deeper into his fragile frame of mind.  Tuition fees for his children, mortgage bills and other issues ravaged his thoughts.

Suddenly, a text rang his phone into wakefulness. He read the message and sighed. It was a cry for help from a reputable Christian missionary organization soliciting for donations. They were asking for pledges that would be used as financial ships to reach some less privileged children, “catch them young,” the SMS said.  He nearly threw his phone against the wall but somehow held himself back. He could not believe that such text was coming at a time like this. Something would not let him ignore the text though and before he could change his mind; he hurriedly made an online transaction and emptied one of his accounts. He kept wondering whether he had lost his senses.

After he paid in the money, a combination of famishment and fatigue made him dose off. While slumbering, he heard a voice that said, “Try again!”

He woke up with a start wondering what was going on. The voice persisted in his head and told him, Launch out into deep waters and cast your nets again.

Simon finally accepted that it was the Lord was speaking to him but the senselessness of the whole thing nearly made him laugh. He was an expert! A fisherman so good he was known as the Kingfisher! He knew the right time, season and best climes to fish and he had done that all through last night. Beyond his natural ability (he had been angling for pikes since he was a tyke), he had used sonar and radar to no avail. The sea had beaten him into total submission. Natural skills, education and technology had failed him and now God was saying go back to the place where you failed.

Simon could not believe he was being asked to try again, brave the elements once more. He was exhausted and voracious, his bones were cooking in a broth of weariness yet The Lord was saying “try again! Go back to the deep waters! Give it another shot!”

Simon whispered a prayer; we have toiled all the night, and have taken nothing: nevertheless at your word, we will try again.

He made phone calls to his crew; some were already on their way home while some were about to make for the road. Of course they thought he had gone mad.

“We just came back empty handed,” some shouted in incredulity. However, they recognised the edge of finality in his voice, the tone that brooked no argument.

As they weighed anchor and cast off, Simon reflected on The Lord’s words. As a fishing guru, he knew fish could only be accessed in deep waters but he felt God was telling him more than that. He shrugged in a let’s see how it goes way and set his face to the wind until he got to the fishing position where he had just miserably floundered and failed.

Deep within the oceanic depths, myriad forms of fishes suddenly perked their ears as a divine voice spoke “Fishnese” (the language of fish) to them. They were told to move towards the longitudinal and latitudinal position of Simon’s trawler. A supernatural aquatic SATNAV system was activated within them. An extraordinary unseen hand raked the depths and swept them forward with mind-boggling speed. Every fish suddenly had a mission and that was to find Simon’s net.

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Within minutes of the net being lowered, they were filled to bursting level with all kinds of fish. The type of catch he made in months was made in minutes. The net was so heavy the speed of the trawler started to drag. Simon opened his mouth for several minutes at the stupendous ship sinking, net breaking harvest of fish. Faith had made a fool of what made sense! He realized he had short-changed himself. The word had been for him to let down nets but a smidgen of unbelief had made him go with only one trawler to conserve fuel and man power (He paid some of his staff by the hour).  He had only let down one net and the result had been prodigious. What if he had let down nets? Other trawlers and their crews came to help out with the bountiful miracle. Some of the trawlers would go on to become his partners in the coming months since Jonah and sons could not handle the reversal in their fortunes alone. The prosperity was so massive for the family business to remain the way it used to be. He now understood The Lord’s words.

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By launching into the deep he had left the shallow waters of the familiar. He sailed away from the comfort zone of his senses to take a plunge into fathomless depths of faith where possibilities are endless. He got the Revelation that God had made him confront his failure. He now knew that The Adonai was majestic and powerful enough to have made fish come to meet him even in shallow waters but the message was that to look defeat in the eyes and trounce it comprehensively needs depths. That would stay with him for the rest of his life. Letting down his nets hours after being let down abysmally was God telling him that he should not allow yesterday’s disappointments to kill today’s dream. It was a sign of expectation and hope.

On the deck that morning, Simon saw a future where he was going to leave all the operational work behind though his shares would remain intact and join the Christian missionary organisation. After what he had seen, he knew that Jonah and sons was the smallest thing in Heaven’s agenda for him. He would devote his whole life to fishing for bigger catch, men!

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On their way back to the shore, he wondered why a God of perfection would bother with an imperfect gnat like him. Right there on the deck swarming with fish with the noise of exultation and wonder echoing in crazy decibels following the wondrous event the crew had experienced, Simon knelt…bowed……in worship……

This is a contemporary version of the story in Luke 5.

1 And it came to pass, that, as the people pressed upon him to hear the word of God, he stood by the lake of Gennesaret,

2 And saw two ships standing by the lake: but the fishermen were gone out of them, and were washing their nets.

3 And he entered into one of the ships, which was Simon’s, and prayed him that he would thrust out a little from the land. And he sat down, and taught the people out of the ship.

4 Now when he had left speaking, he said unto Simon, Launch out into the deep, and let down your nets for a draught.

5 And Simon answering said unto him, Master, we have toiled all the night, and have taken nothing: nevertheless at thy word I will let down the net.

6 And when they had this done, they inclosed a great multitude of fishes: and their net brake.

7 And they beckoned unto their partners, which were in the other ship, that they should come and help them. And they came, and filled both the ships, so that they began to sink.

8 When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, Depart from me; for I am a sinful man, O Lord.

9 For he was astonished, and all that were with him, at the draught of the fishes which they had taken:

10 And so was also James, and John, the sons of Zebedee, which were partners with Simon. And Jesus said unto Simon, Fear not; from henceforth thou shalt catch men.

11 And when they had brought their ships to land, they forsook all, and followed him.

Images from Google
©2015 Ekpo Ezechinyere

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31 thoughts on “INTERVENTION 1

      1. Amity my sister…how I wish we could all just do that easily….unfortunately, trusting and obeying is like climbing the Everest with bare hands sometimes….I guess we don’t still know the Master well enough..Grace is really needed…

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Sir…
    I have no words for you right now.
    Let me go and come back and see if I would have gotten the right words…

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      1. Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!!!
        You really are a patient man. Hehehehehe!!!
        Truth be told DrSwag, I find it hard to describe your ingenuity and brilliance.
        The way you bring Biblical Tales to life with modern techniques keep me spellbound. And I so marvel at the way you string words together.
        This calling of yours is exceptional and outstanding.
        Keep at it Bro.
        May the Joy of the Lord continue to be your strength.
        And may your source of inspiration be renewed nanosecondly…

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      2. Amen ooooooooooooo……Thank you my sister…we are not sufficient to think anything of ourselves..our sufficiency is of God…God bless you…

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  2. We need more bloggers like this. Bloggers who go to the Scriptures and bring out a passage and localise it, and synchronize it to our time and parlance. I laughed when I saw Jonah and sons fishing company, and for a rugged second suspected these are my Igbo brothers in Alaba International River (and perhaps their fishing tools are made in Aba).

    I am awed whenever I read Bible tales retelling, breaking away from the exact sequence and form without abandoning the original theme and plot. This is something I have no ability to come of with, more the reason why I marvel at the ease with which you do this.

    Dr, you have words and you weave words. You have seen the Word and you are willing to show us, in your own words…

    Thanks for sharing, happy to blog with you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. This is one comment I had to read over again…made me pleased to my roots but beyond that drives home the fact that you are an accomplished Writer! Rarely does a comment take one on a journey but this is profound in its immensity. From the comical to the sublime, you painted such a masterpiece that made me start wondering if I am actually the subject here. Wonderfully spoken Sir…your kindness knows no bounds….THANK YOU!!!

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  3. The fishing registers and terminologies you employed in this masterpiece is highly commendable Swag! The Lord spoke ‘Fishnese’, didn’t he?! 😄😂
    Now that’s just one of many of your raw innovativeness on display right there! You just raised your own bar several notches higher and you do know what it is, that you’re doing! Excellence is what you embody and I can’t help but be awed by your creativity, each and every time you reel out a new post! Sir, this is a confirmed mindblower and an etheral recounting of a fable so well known! You’ve more than proven your mettle and I say this without bias Swag…..You. Can. Write! Your imaginative prowess, which I continually hammer upon is out of this world! Double thumbs up, a Masterstoryteller’s who you are, don’t even doubt that for a second! Wow!!! 👌😃

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