Thursday, March 20, 2008

Fishing differently in different waters and cultures

This Saturday from 4-5 pm we are having an Easter Outreach Party at our house for Amy's school kids, neighborhood kids, church kids, and whoever else will come. If you remember, go ahead and send a quick prayer that God provides everything and everyone. Thanks.

Anyhow, due to bad scheduling on my part, and some other factors, I will be missing the last kayak fishing tournament of the year. Last tourney I participated in, I missed a 25 dollar gift certificate by 1/2 an inch-so there is big money at stake I'm potentially forfeiting! Sure.

Regardless, yesterday someone sent me a link of a fishing tournament in Nigeria. You really ought to check it out by clicking here, and then go to the "Fishing Mayhem" caption for the slides. They really are interesting. If for some reason the link has changed, please post a response and I'll find it for you. It's that cool.

I've found a few similarities between the two fishing tournaments. Money is involved as well as fish and fisherman. Other than that, they look totally different because they are in different cultures-not to mention targeting different kinds of fish.

Their tournament weigh-in involves actual fish. Our kayak tournament 'weigh-in' involves digital images when we submit our camera's memory cards (its an all-release tournament). They use nets while we can only use lures (no bait or even scented artificial lures), and usually specified lures at that. They can get knocked out while wrestling giant catfish. To my knowledge no one has ever been injured while battling a large fish in our tourneys.

If I were a missionary in Africa, and wanted to do a fishing tournament/outreach, I would never try to do a kayak/rod-n-reel/artificial lures only tournament there. That would be ridiculous.
Though I don't have any desire to wrestle catfish (I would probably go for a different species because catfish have barbs that stab), I would have to fish like they do-even as detestable as that is to my 'sporting' convictions.

If I were a missionary in Africa, I would have to cater my ministry to the people would hope to reach. And so must we do that even in our culture today. We do that by finding places and activities which are culturally-or even sub-culturally relevant (but not sinful of course)-and participating in them: kids activities, coffee shops, school functions/responsibilities, homeowners associations, gyms, community concerns, etc...

If we can affirm what is culturally good with them, we are one step closer to redeeming what is culturally sinful.

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