When I think about some of the best things I have ever had in my life, nearly every single one of them had to be gained with hard work. I won't go into all of these life stories about this and that, because we all have our own. However, in the type of kayak fishing that I do I always try to look for the best bodies of water I can find, the most beautiful scenery, and the hidden locations - catching big bass is just and added benefit to this. I have never really been satisfied with doing what everyone else does. Any time I can find a location that not many people can easily get to and or know of, you can guarantee I will most likely go find it in person. Many times the reason why I like finding such hard to get to locations is because they are often far better than the locations that everyone can get to. The enjoyment and reward from finding such locations often comes from looking upon an amazing scenery, finding clear water, catching big bass and simply knowing that you are at a location that not too many people have been before and all of the hard work it took to get there.
This is often the case for me as I try to go kayak fishing in remote areas that not too many people can access easily. It is not that all the good locations are not easily accessible, but more so that I have always believed that the best things in life are found where the majority of people aren't flocking to. I think this is very similar to the life each of us chooses to live and here is a short story to symbolize it.
About a year or two ago I found a waterfall on satellite imaging from researching new waters to fish. I told myself that one day I was going to go find this waterfall. I researched it for several months and just couldn't find much information on it and a feasible way to get to this waterfall. For the longest time I have been putting it off because I just haven't had adequate resources to make it happen. I still really don't, but this weekend I decided it was going to happen and went out to find a waterfall I have never been to before.
The entire drive to my put in location near Junction, Texas was encompassed with heavy rains and lightning. Something that doesn't happen too often in Junction, Texas at all. I kept considering turning back but I kept going until I got to my put in location. Once I got here it was still pouring and really made me consider if I should just call it quits. I decided that I wasn't going to let a little rain stop my journey to find this waterfall - even though this type of weather is terrible for bass fishing. Luckily the rain eventually seized to a beautiful day, but the fishing for the day was pretty much ruined due to such a change in the barometric pressure.
Although I really enjoy fishing, I quickly realized that the weather wasn't going to permit much fishing and this made me want to turn back even more. The only thing that kept me going was that I wanted to find this waterfall. Along the long paddle upstream I had to navigate through several rapids. These rapids really wear you out, as it is not easy walking upstream through rushing water and trying to find your footing on rocks in the water - especially while towing a 14 foot kayak behind you. I had to do this quite a few times, and as the day got later and later I kept wanting to turn back, but I had to decide if I really wanted this waterfall or not. I thought for a second as I was staring at the cliffs around me and about halfway up a long stretch of rapids. After some thought, I realized I wanted to get to this waterfall no matter what this river and day would throw at me.
As I made my way further and further upstream I started to hear a roar of water and my heart was pounding to find this waterfall. Eventually, I caught my first glimpse and realized all of the obstacles to get to this waterfall was well worth it. This waterfall was about 6 foot tall, but it spanned the entire width of the river and was one of the more beautiful sights I had seen from kayak fishing in quite some time - maybe even more so than Dolan Falls on the Devils River. The water was really clear and clean and the sound of the water crashing over the rocks really made me feel great for all of the struggles that came along the way for trying to find this one waterfall. Due to the journey being so difficult, it was that much more enjoyable to finally get to witness this great sight from nature.
You might be wondering how I think this is similar to life...I'll tell you quickly. Each and every one of us will be faced with decisions and roadblocks along the way. You will always have sections of rapids in our lives where you really don't want to keep fighting through them and it would be easy to turn around. You can't seem to find your footing and you might even stumble and fall a few times making you more frustrated. The easy thing to do is just turn around and give up and "go with the flow", but if you live your life going with the flow you probably won't ever get to find the greatest aspects of life. You might not have to work as hard but you will never experience what God has given each and every one of us - we simply have to put in the work. Just as these rapids in the rivers I kayak fish make it hard to continue forward so will the "rapids" that life throws at us. You are constantly battling rushing water and trying to find a good spot to step through all of the rocks in the river, but in the end the work is well worth it. Always remember that no matter what type of rapids you might be going through now, if you live your life for God you can make it though each and every one of them. It may not be easy and it may seem like you are constantly trying to go upstream. However, if you live your life for God and go against the flow and fight to make it upstream, all of your hard work to represent Him will unmeasurably surpass such a short time of the struggles, hard work, and decisions each of us has to make in return for an eternity in Heaven for a waterfall like no one has ever experienced before.
“For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.”
"Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you."