Eight Days of Back to Basics: 2. Walking in Forgiveness

For eight days I’m posting excerpts from each of the eight chapters in Back to Basics: Eight Foundations for Kingdom Living, the book I co-authored with Doug Roberts and Ben Pasley.

Each day I’m also going to give one 50% refund on the price of the book to the first person to gift a copy of Back to Basics to a friend from our merchandise page at our store.. Early elf gets the deal! You won’t know if someone else has already nabbed it on a given day unless they post a comment to brag about it. 

Each chapter opens with a scene that really happened on the camping trip we took to make audio recordings of Doug’s teachings and our conversations. Amazingly, each scene foreshadows the conversation that follows it. 

Chapter 2: Walking in Forgiveness

The sun was bright and strong, warming the huge boulders and scrubby trees on the other side of the lake by the time Doug, Ben, and Tim found their way through the woods, down a steep slope, and finally to the shore. They set up their fishing gear and chatted about how beautiful the scenery was, what the depth of the reservoir must be, and how good it felt to be out despite the 9,000 feet of altitude presenting particular challenges to Doug’s Oklahoma lungs during the descent from camp. Nearby, a man wearing oddly inappropriate hip-hop garb was teaching his three-year-old daughter to fish.

Ben reeled in a nice-sized rainbow trout on his second cast and had no trouble bragging about it. Tim, accustomed exclusively to fly-fishing, avoided giving Ben any encouragement for catching a fish on a bait-casting rig. Fly-fishermen are a prejudiced bunch. Tim stood off a few paces trying not to call attention to his awkward wielding of the spin-casting setup and the fact that his fingers were bleeding from wrestling the mass of treble hooks protruding from his little plastic lure. The fish-like plastic lure was not submitting to his authority.

Finally getting things in order, Tim pressed his thumb on the reel and flung his lure toward the water.

Kerplunk. Splash.

Two splashes? Was a monster fish taking the lure already? Ben, already reeling in another fish, gave a look of surprise followed by a high-pitched laugh that echoed off the rocks on the other side of the reservoir when he saw Tim, puzzled, holding a two foot long section of rod from which a tangle of fishing line extended about ten feet into the lake and disappeared.

our store.Doug observed (without any effort to hide his delight) that Tim’s thumb was still holding the reel’s button down, but that the rest of the reel had joined the lure out in the lake—along with the entire tip-half of the rod! During Tim’s mighty cast he had pushed the reel’s guts completely out of the housing with his thumb and, as it shot out toward the lake, it had grabbed the end of the rod and took it all—hook, line, and sinker as it were—right out into the lake.

Tim sighed, mustered up a laugh at the absurdity of the situation, and sat down to draw the tangles and pieces of reel and lure from the place where they’d settled on the bottom of the lake.

Afternoon clouds were gathering when, after long minutes of untangling, cutting, and re-tying, the fishing rod was back to its original state.

“Welp, ready to go do the chapter on forgiveness?” asked Doug, slyly smiling at Tim’s near total absence of any angling whatsoever.

“Yeah.”

December 2, 2011