(Fish Tales is a narration or essay written by club members or guests that relate to their experiences fishing in Still Waters bass tournaments.)

The Miller's Creek Reservoir 2002 September Tournament
by Richard Rhodes

Before Saturday, Miller's Creek was definitely an unknown body of water to many of us in the club. Knowing where to fish on the lake at this time of the year is of paramount importance in being successful. It is said of a certain professional tournament bass fisherman that he's not that much better a fisherman than other people, he just knows where to park his boat over fish each time. Well, knowing where to fish is certainly most important here.

Club member Jamie Pena visited with his neighbor about fishing Miller's Creek before the tournament, and his neighbor mentioned that Miller's Creek was one of his favorite fishing lakes. He told Jamie what area to fish and where he could locate them this time of year. When most of us struggled to catch a legal sized bass to weigh in at the end of the day, Jamie weighed two nice fish that together weighed over 7 pounds. Knowing which brushline or which point to throughly fish certainly helped him maximize his chances of being successful. Just like the professional bass fisherman, Jamie just parked his boat where the bass where.

Unlike Jamie, club member Jack Wills didn't have any pretournament advice before he began fishing the lake, but his fishing experience paid off when he recognized a strong potential holding place for bass. He approached a large dead tree in about five feet of water. He knew that this tree was an ideal type of structure that often attracts and holds bass. He flipped the soft plastic worm right next to the trunk of the tree so it would slide down one side until it hit the bottom of the lake, but nothing happened. He again presented the worm down the other side of the tree with the same results. It wasn't until the 5th time that the worm dropped in and around the tree and made its way to the base that finally a large bass took the worm. A crisis now developed because Jack had cast his line over a fork in the tree against his better judgement. The 6-pound bass on the other end of his line wasn't in a cooperative mood at all. Somehow Jack finally brought the bass up and through the fork of the tree into deeper water and to the boat. His persistence in his presentation when he knew that a bass had to be holding on the tree paid off. The bass' weight certified as a new lake record for Miller's Creek.

The Lord's patience for us individually far surpassses any patience that we as humans ever could have. He knows who we are and where we are. He is not searching for us blindly as many of us do when we fish a new lake. He is with us at all times. The bass' stubborness in refusing to take Jack's worm the first four times the worm was presented pales in our stubborness to do what we know the Lord wants us to do. The Lord is ever persistent in his patience in showing us His will and urging us to follow him. On one hand the fish is caught, captured, and brought to shore to be weighed, photographed, and eventually released again to resume its normal routine; however, when we submit to the Lord's will in our lives, we are not merely interrupted as was the bass: our lives become complete, secure, satisfying, and purposeful. We are not released back into the world again to go out on our own, but when we accept the gift that God has for us and follow Him, His presence and assurance are with us wherever we go and through whatever troubles the world may throw at us.



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