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Bah Humbug Week Continues: Day 4

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December 29

 Sharp Hooks

Reas Weeks was a Dry Creek legend who lived and died before my time. He was a bachelor who lived in a remote area along Bundick Creek. He never owned a vehicle or held a regular job. He supported himself by fishing, hunting, and farming.

He was known as the best creek fisherman in our area. My dad told the story from his childhood of the school bus picking Reas Weeks up. Mr. Reas flopped a forty-pound catfish on the bench by my dad. He was going to the general store to sell it.

Mr. Jay Miller, a neighbor to Reas Weeks, shared another story:

“I was always amazed at how Reas caught the largest catfish in Bundick Creek. No one else came close in size or quantity. One day I asked him how he did this.

“He led me to his barn and pulled out a large bucket with his hooks and lines carefully wrapped around it. He took a whet rock out of his overalls and began sharpening a hook. ‘Jay, if you’re gonna catch the big ones, you’ve gotta keep your hooks sharp. Those big catfish have tough mouths. A dull hook won’t set, but a sharp one will.’”

It’s a good story with a spiritual message:

Jesus has called us to be “fishers of men.” If we are going to effectively reach others, our hook had better be sharp.

In my life I’ve found that this is only done by spending time with Jesus. As we study His word, the Bible, and fellowship with God in prayer, our lives will be sharpened for His use.

Yes, I never knew Reas Weeks . . . but one of his legacies is this story that I’ve shared dozens of times.

Wise words on sharp hooks from an old country fisherman.

Thanks, Mr. Reas.

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About Curt Iles

I write to have influence and impact through well-told stories of my Louisiana and African sojourn.

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