Susie smiled her biggest, brightest smile and said, “You bet, let’s pray!” She took Johnny by the hand, closed her eyes, and said, “Lord Jesus, my friend Johnny is here with me and he wants you to save him. Well, here’s Johnny to tell you that for himself…go on Johnny” she urged.
Johnny took a deep breath and said, “Jesus, I really do want you to come into my heart. Please God, forgive me, I have been an awful sinner and I need to you save me so that I can go to heaven. I want you to live in my heart like you do in Susie’s. I want to feel that same love and happiness that the others at our church have in their hearts. Please make me one of your children. Please be my Saviour. Amen!!”
Susie repeated “Amen”, opened her eyes and gave Johnny a huge hug. Johnny didn’t look much different on the outside, and he was still all wet from the river, but his eyes were different and, and there was someone standing behind him. It was her father grinning his biggest, happiest grin.
“Dad!” she burst out. “How long have you been standing there?” “Just long enough to see that the Lord went fishing today. And it looks like He caught one, too.” He said.
Johnny turned and looked at the Pastor and smiled.
Just then, the rest of the men from the church showed up including Johnny’s father who was a bit slower than the pastor on account of he was a little on the round side like his son. However, that did not stop him from scooping his son up in his arms and hugging him.
“Oh Johnny, I was so worried. Are you all right?” Johnny replied, “I’m fine now, Dad. Better than I have ever been before, as a matter of fact.” He said with a big grin of his own, “I just asked Jesus to come into my heart and be my saviour, Dad.”
His father’s eyes got as big as saucers and he hugged his son again and said “that makes me just about the happiest man in the world son. Let’s go tell your mother.”
With that, they all headed back to the picnic. Susie and Johnny looked at each other and smiled several times on the way back to the others. She could see him say silently, “Thank you, Susie.”
She just looked at him, smiled and said back silently, “Thank God, not me” and pointed toward heaven.
When they all returned to the picnic area people crowded around to show how grateful they were that Susie and Johnny had come back safely. There was also great excitement when they heard what had happened and people were congratulating Johnny on his new life in Christ. Their mothers were also holding each one close glad to have their children once again safely within their loving arms.
Suddenly there was a small disturbance as Stanley made his way through the crowd toward the two older kids. “Hey Johnny! Hey Johnny, can we try fishing again. I’ll let you cast this time, I promise. I still want to catch a big fish. Can we huh? Can we pleeeeease?”
One of the other boys spoke up to say that they had gathered all of the fishing gear up and it was still useable.
Johnny looked at Susie and then at his mom & dad and then at Pastor Tom before responding. “Sure Stanley, why don’t we take our dads with us this time? Maybe your Dad could teach you how to cast.” Pastor Tom nodded his agreement with another big smile on his face.
Well, that’s just what they did and Stanley did catch the biggest fish of the day. That is, if you don’t count Susie’s catch of Johnny for the Lord.