Teach a Man to Fish

Many “moons” ago, I was taught accelerated Math by a very wise and very intelligent teacher. Along with our daily math lessons, she would incorporate life lessons as well.

As we wrapped up the day’s lesson, she relayed to us a story that some of us were half listening to because we were packing up our books. But, my ears perked up immediately when she said, “Folks, give a man a fish…he will eat for a day. Teach a man to fish, and he will eat for a lifetime.”

What a brilliant statement! I thought to myself. It only fully and literally resonated with me 20 years later on one humid May evening.

My family LOVES to fish. In late May, my father and I joined my two nephews at a private pond. The sun was shining and the weather was perfect. Little did I know what great joy I was about to experience.

Nephew No. 1 had a friend, “Paul”, who I quickly determined A. Was not having much fun because B. He had no idea how to fish! (I could almost hear my Math teacher, “Teach a man…)

Had I ever met this young man? Did I know his name? No to both. But, my heart was full of compassion as I watched him catch nothing and I knew I could DO something about it. So, I taught him how to bait a hook, cast, and finally set the hook. The rest was up to him. As I walked over to the other bank I heard, “I GOT ONE!”

Paul had successfully hooked and reeled in his very own fish. To say he was beaming, is an understatement.

Believe it or not, folks, Paul caught more fish than me that day. Why? “Give a man a fish…he’ll eat for a day. Teach a man to fish, and he will eat for a lifetime.”

Until we meet again.

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