Becoming Fishers of Men
In Matthew 4:19 we read, “Then He said to them, “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.” A few weeks back our Men’s Residence had its 2nd Fishing Trip experience. We had over 30 men on a private deep sea fishing charter. Over 30 men in recovery spending a day fishing and fellowship alcohol and drug free.
Being in recovery is more than just being sober; it’s learning how to do life completely different than before. Most recovering addicts have never done too many activities free from drugs and alcohol, so this was a new experience. For many, fishing and drinking went hand in hand, but this time, drinking or drugging were not even on their minds.
Everywhere you looked you saw men living a new abundant life. Typically, a fishing trip would include crude humor, swearing and pride but this time everything was different. You would turn a corner to find men praying together, men praising God and testifying about God’s work in their life. On top of all that goodness we kept over 700 fish! But this was just the first part of our trip!
A resident came to us about two months back broken and lost. He joked with us about being a beach bum, but he was always moving around living on sailboats, bartending where he could. God began doing a mighty work in this man’s life. He accepted the Lord into his life and the transformation began. Being an extrovert, he was always a people person. But now the joy of the Lord is all he wants to share with others! As we were fishing, we came across a sailboat.
This was his former life. He said here he was on this charter boat with Jesus, and he watched as this beautiful sailboat drifted in the opposite direction. He spoke of how powerful this moment was in seeing himself die to his old life as he sailed on with Jesus in this new life.
He asked if I could baptize him in the ocean when we got back. He told us how important, personal, and symbolic it would be for him to be baptized in the salt water as he put to death his old life and welcomed this new one. He wanted to show others the love and grace of the Lord’s work in his personal life.
The group of men walked to the beach when we docked. We walked past bars straight to the beach where this man was baptized before all the beach goers to witness. He exclaimed his love for the Lord and told everyone who he walked by about the work Jesus was doing and about the saving blood of our Lord. Another resident was moved by this proclamation of faith and asked to be baptized as well.
As the group of men walked back to our van we were stopped and asked to come along on the booze cruise being offered. All at once the men exclaimed “No! We don’t live that way anymore!” They proceeded to tell everyone about Jesus and the Christian Care Center and how they could have the same power in their lives. This evening we did not leave just regular fisherman; we left fishers of men proclaiming the truth of Jesus!
At the Men’s Residence we don’t just get men off drugs. Instead, we have a front row seat as God gives these men a new life and a new hope. We watch families being restored and we watch fishermen become fishers of men. If you would like to get involved with this ministry by either donations, prayer or volunteering, please email Jamie@christiancarecenter.org.