When I was in middle school and the early part of high school I often said there were two things I wanted to have. 1)A boat 2)Someone to place my affection upon.
Well I’m 20 years old now and high school seems forever away even if it was just three years ago. I now have two boats, one of which I have not used since 2005, and the other has been in need of repair for three years now due to holes. Boats aren’t all they are cracked up to be. Fishing is still great, but I’ve started to learn there is more to live for than getting out of school to hit the Intercoastal.
The second thing I asked for was someone to place my affections upon, even as a 15 year old I was an old man I guess. I wanted a girlfriend. I’ve also learned that true satisfaction in life isn’t found there. Looking back I realize I was no where near where I needed to be to date, and probably am still at a point where I shouldn’t. What I have learned is there is a place to set my affections and the name I jokingly called my smallest boat is taking a different place in my mind, one I could not have ever imagined.
So I jokingly gave names to both of my jon boats in high school. ‘Flattitude’ for the larger boat because of its being a flat bottom jon boat primarily used for flounder fishing. The second is a very old 11′ 8” Arkansas Traveler or so thats what I was told it is by the man who gave it to me. I jokingly called it ‘Pond Hopper’ because of its use for bream fishing in ponds and smaller bodies of water.
In the 2 years I have spent at Southeastern I have developed a bit of a broader view of the world. I now realize that there is way more to the world than southeastern North Carolina with the occasional visit to states that touch her boarders. There is an entire world out there that is very different than the one I have grown up in. Majority of the world does not have the same view of the physical and metaphysical as I do. That is a view of the world that is absent of the gospel of Jesus Christ. I have a new set of glasses now that give me vision more than ever to the need of the proclamation of the gospel. So now I find myself wanting in some way shape form or fashion to “jump the pond”. I don’t know if this means going to an urban center in the US where the nations gather or to go over the pond.
Someone to place my affections upon. The idolatry of dating constantly before me then and before me now. The entire world both secular and the church have a constant pressure above individuals to find their worth in someone of the opposite sex. I have learned the ultimate end of placed affections, Christ. Placing all my affections with the end of the glory of Christ also places a new set of glasses in front of my eyes that give me a different vision. I have learned that if I spend the rest of my life as a single man and serve the kingdom of God than I am much better off than if I lived in rebellion married. What I look for now is not what I looked for even at the end of high school. What I seek in dating now is someone to potentially marry. Someone who I can serve the kingdom of God with and that God would be glorified in a relationship; not any of my pride or desires. The end of those affections: the glory of Christ.
So pond hopping now goes beyond bream fishing and affections are placed.