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7-Day Practical Faith Blog: Be Like a Christ Fish

Matthew 13: 33

Settling into my room at Blue Lake Methodist Encampment in Alabama for a Christian writers' conference, I noticed some graffiti on the side of the closet. A young camper, probably a boy, had left guidance for those that followed. You can see his words in the accompanying photo.

His advice to the reader was: "Take a shower. Don't do anything dumb. Brush your hair. Don't cut in line. Be like a Christfish."

Words of wisdom for getting through a weekend retreat or a week of camp! Except...what on earth is a Christfish?

Since we don't have our graffiti artist's definition, I'm going to share my interpretation.

Christfish reminds me of the early, perilous days of Christianity, where Christians were persecuted socially, economically, and physically. They had a secret way of communicating their Christianity in public. While conversing, one would take his staff and draw a simple fish shape in the dirt. If the other man added the eye by placing a dot with his staff in the fish shape, he was indicating that he, too, was a Christian. If the other person did not react to the fish, he was not a Christian.

Christfish, then, is an analogy of our secret walking through the world as Christians. In my award-winning book, "Live Like You're Loved," I write about how we are all commonly sent to be yeast in the world, revealing God's kingdom on earth, as described in Matthew 13: 33.

The kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed into a large amount of flour until it worked all through the dough.

I believe Jesus' parable sets up our thought process as we are commonly sent. Yeast is a small microscopic compound added to the bread it influences, causing it to rise. When the yeast is properly kneaded in, the rising of the dough is assured. Yeast works from within. It has a ripple effect, silently impacting wherever it touches.

We are commonly sent to be yeast for God's kingdom in the world. We do this by working from within, being embedded in the world. To extend the metaphor, we are like Christfish, silently and secretly swimming in the lake, influencing others wherever we swim.

So today, I urge you to follow the advice of our young camper. Take a shower. Don't do anything dumb. Brush your hair. Don't cut in line. And most importantly, be like a Christfish, quietly doing the work of the Lord on earth, as His hands, feet, and fins, sent to swim through the tainted waters of the world, ready to positively influence everyone you meet.

"Live Like You're Loved" is starting to make an impact. A fellow writer and speaker told me this week that she is creating an entire speech for women's groups based on one influential paragraph in the book. Learn more about my book and video study, and the impact it can make on your life, by swimming to .

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