Ronnie Jones, Thursday, Sept 17, 2009.

            I decide that I’m going to Big Pee Dee River and see if I can catch a few bass. I haven’t been feeling well lately, have been recovering from some minor surgery, and just need to “get out amongst ‘em.” When I go fishing, I always take too much tackle, equipment, etc., but, that’s all part of it. Today I load my jon boat, because I don’t think I can handle the bass rig. I get everything loaded and head out to Stone Landing on Big Pee Dee River. Haven’t been there in some time, but, it should be ok. I get there, and sure enough, everything looks fine, so I proceed to take equipment from back of truck and load it in the boat. I think to myself, “I’ve really got to cut down on the number of rods and reels I bring, but, hey, I Enjoy using different outfits, lures, etc….
            I start off with a buzz bait and a topwater plug around some gravel and lay-downs, but, nada. Decide to move further down the river, so, I crank the outboard, and start down the river. I get just a short distance down river and see a semi point with some willows on it and decide to throw a frog around and under them and see if I could get a bass to hit. I wanted to get way back under the willows, so, I’d really fire it under the branches. That worked great, until the line wrapped around one of the larger willow limbs. They don’t break very easily and, even though I had 50 lb braid, I couldn’t snap the limb. I didn’t want to lose a $15 frog, so, I hit the trolling motor on high to spin the boat around and get up to the willow to get the lure loose.
            A jon boat spins much quicker when you hit the trolling motor than a full-fledged bass boat does. So fast, in fact, until I lost balance as the boat spun around. My first instinct was to change footing in order to keep my balance and not be thrown into the river. That part worked well, but, when I felt my foot kick something, that didn’t feel well. It especially didn’t feel well when I looked down and saw my favorite, custom made, shakey head rod, sinking into the Big Pee Dee River. The fact that a $500 Stella reel was on it didn’t make me feel any better, either. 
            I had bought that reel a few years ago when money was much more plentiful in our lives than it is now, and I knew there was no way I could replace it now. So, it was my favorite outfit, as well as being, for me, an irreplaceable outfit. I could have cried. 
            Later, I thought that I should have thrown the rod in my hand over board and grabbed for the sinking one, because the one I was holding was hung on a limb and I could have gotten it, …but, at the time, I didn’t think of it. All I could think of was that my rod and reel had fallen into the river and I needed to try to retrieve it Fast! I didn’t have any big treble hooks, so, I cut the frog from the rod with the heavy braid, put a big piece of lead on it and tied some hooks on the line to try to snag the sunken rod. ..and, all the time, the current was pushing the rod further downstream and further from me and the boat.
            My hands were shaking so badly until I could hardly tie the hooks and lead on and thinking about it getting further away did nothing to settle my nerves. I figure I was about 40 to 50 foot out in the river when the rod went overboard. The current was pretty strong, but, I had an idea where it went over & I marked it in my mind by some bushes on the shore and began casting. Pretty soon, I gave up on the lead and hook idea and decided I’d try a heavy lipless crankbait. I tried……. And, tried, and tried. But, nothing but an occasional limb.
            This is one of those places where you pray and find the rod, but, I had been praying the entire time. I considered taking my clothes off and trying to find it that way, but, all I could think of was me pulling my clothes off, getting into the water, having another heart attack, and leaving Bonnie wondering, “what in the world was he doing in the river with his clothes off and his tackle, etc., in the boat?” I couldn’t leave her like that. I know a lot of people would have gotten a kick out of it, but, I love Bonnie too much.
            After about 10 minutes of desperation casting, I just stopped and said, “Lord, this is Your outfit anyway, You’ve just let me use it. If You want me to find it, I will, if You don’t, no matter what I do, I’ll not find it.” So, I decided I’d try one more thing. I tied on a deep diving crankbait, (Storm Wiggle Wart) threw it a couple of times and nothing. Then, lo & behold, when I was retrieving it, I felt something bump the lure. When it bumped, the instant it hit, I Knew, it was the rod. In fact, I said out loud, “That’s It, I’ve got it.” As I continued to reel it in, at one point, it seemed to come off, but, again, I said out loud, “there’s no way it will come off.” 
            I can’t describe how I felt at that moment, but I just Knew I’d get it back. I wish you could have been there when the tip came out of the water. It was just an absolute Answer/Power of God time. Now, listen, folks, it was just a rod and reel. It was nothing in the Grand Scheme of things, but, it was special to me. 
            Bonnie & I have devotion time each morning and night, and a few days earlier, we were talking about some of the things we and our family are going through. Right now, it’s tough. I don’t know what’s going to happen if God doesn’t intercede. She & I were talking about that when I mentioned, “if God would just show Himself strong in our lives, it sure would be a blessing.” …well, what do you think I thought about when I saw that rod and reel? In Luke 15, there’s a story about a woman who had ten pieces of silver. She lost one, and did not rest until it was found. When she found it, she told her friends, “Rejoice with me for I have found the piece which I had lost.” Well, folks, Rejoice with me, for I have found the rod and reel which was lost!


hey everyone .... first ... let me tell you .. i KNOW that you know what i'm about to say... it's just that bonnie just told me, "when i wake up at night, they are always on my mind." .. to which i replied, "yes, on mine as well, that's why i play them."

what am i talking about???

in the mornings when we finish devotions, we then, "begin our day" ..getting ready for work, etc.  ... but, before i go into another room, i turn my tv on to youtube.  there, i press the "continuous play" button, then, choose the theme for the day. some days, it's gaither hymns, some days, it's certain songs, eg, "O love of God"  ...and quite a few people sing "O love of God."

i love the hymn, "Satisfies" ...Hallelujah, I have found Him, who my soul so long has craved, Jesus satisfies my longings, through His blood I now am saved.  and, i play it over and over ....and over and over... and....  at work, we usually keep Christian radio playing in the background, but, some days, i'll just play hymns like Satisfies, or O love of God, or hymn by Guy Penrod, or david phelps, or the gaither group.... but, the main point .. when you hear these hymns over and over, when you wake up at night, immediately, the words begin flowing through your mind, "Hallelujah, I have found Him........."  and, it's Wonderful.

now, go back and read the first sentence .. it will make more sense..:) 

if i had a good sinus medicine, or, a good remedy for aching bones, etc.,.. i would share them with you guys.  i share this because it makes mine and bonnie's life better, our relationship with one another and God, dearer, and, i just wanted to share it with you guys.

hope you all have a wonderful day.