A Fish Out of Water

During a fishing trip with my son Andrew, I observed something very interesting. He hooked a large bass, and attempted to land it after just a short while. I cautioned him to wait, because it looked like the fish had more “fight” in him. Sure enough, the fish gave one more surge, flipped himself free of the hook, and swam away.

As I reflected about this, I thought, how amazing it is that the fish had such strength. He was able to overcome a grown man, many times his size. I thought of the phrase “a fish out of water.” A fish, in his element, has phenomenal strength. Yet, once you get him out of the water, he is quite powerless.

In the Bible, the Holy Spirit is symbolized by water.[1] Just as water is the element for the fish, so the Holy Spirit is your element. As a believer, you are “in the Spirit” and therefore you are strong “in the Lord.”[2] Since Christ is the source of your strength, you can now do all things through Him.[3] But only as you walk in the Spirit, will you experience His mighty power.[4]

Do you feel powerless, weak, or defeated? If so, then you are outside of your element. You are relying on your fleshly strength instead of His strength. And that makes you just like a fish out of water!

Remember your true element. You are no longer in the flesh, but in the Spirit. Therefore, cease from your fleshly efforts. Stop living after the flesh and start walking in the Spirit.[5] Now, that’s your true element!



[1] “On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, ‘If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’ But this He spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those believing in Him would receive …” John 7:37-39

[2] “But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not His.” Romans 8:9

[3] “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:13

[4] “I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh … If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.” Galatians 5:16, 25

[5] “For we through the Spirit eagerly wait for the hope of righteousness by faith. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but faith working through love.” Galatians 5:5,6

Scripture quotations in footnotes added (NKJV).

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