No. 469 Jim Davidson Ü NEWSPAPER COLUMN


Several years ago, when I was younger and not involved in so many different activities, I used to love to go trout fishing. We have one of the premier trout fishing streams in the country right here in North Arkansas and known as the White River. My friends who read my column in the Baxter Bulletin in Mountain Home will certainly attest to this. The White River runs across the northern part of our state and a large dam was built at Bull Shoals creating Bull Shoals Lake, a great fishing place in its own right, with anglers coming from all over the nation to fish there. I don1t know how many feet, but this dam is high, really high, and when water is released at the bottom, it is cold and swift as the river snakes its way through the mountains. This is prime habitat for trout that must have cold water to survive. The swift water flowing through this dam is also used to generate electricity.

Trout fishermen primarily fish below the dam in the White River and there are several boat docks and rental places along the way where you can rent a boat, motor and everything you need to "wet a hook," as they say.

Because the water is so swift, especially when they are generating, you need an anchor to throw out, if you do not want to be swept along with the current. Most boats are equipped with a piece of railroad iron for this purpose. If you have ever seen a railroad track and can visualize about a foot of this, then you know what I am talking about. When you throw the anchor out, if the water is really swift, it may take a little while before it hangs up on a rock and your boat is brought to a secure position.

When I thought about what I wanted to share with you today, this is the analogy that came to mind. In reality, a fast-moving river is, in one sense, a picture of life as we move along at a fast pace and face the trials and tribulations that come along each day. Sometimes these trials and tribulations become so overwhelming that we often seem to be losing ground as we attempt to succeed and reach the goals we have set for ourselves. At this point, let me pause and ask you this question. Are you facing some things in your life that you just can1t seem to overcome? It could be health problems, financial distress, a failed marriage, problems with children or grandchildren, a conflict with your employer or with an employee, a battle with drugs or alcohol. Of course there are myriads of other problems that many people experience from time to time.

As I look back over the past several years of my life, I have come to the realization that I now have skills and knowledge that I did not have 10 or 20 years ago. I hope the same is true for you as well. It1s been said that people are like plants. When we quit growing, we start dying. The past few months have been so rewarding as I have read a number of good books that have been very enlightening. You know, we should read for profit but we should also read for pleasure. I have a couple of good friends who share books with me and in turn I share some of mine with them. If you are not already doing this, this is an idea you might want to try.

Recently I have made a discovery in the spiritual area of my life that has helped me face the storms that come along and I want to share it with you for what it1s worth. Several years ago I heard a fantastic song titled, 3The Anchor Holds2 that was written by Lawrence Chewning and sung by Ray Boltz, copyright 1994, Word Music Company. Back then I heard the song several times but lost the tape or CD and had not thought about it for the past several months. Then to my surprise, a few weeks ago a lady in my Sunday school class gave Viola and me a CD that contained this song, along with a number of others. However, the orchestra and choir of Emmanuel Faith Community Church in Escondido, Calif., recorded this rendition.

This song is just beautiful and the words are fantastic. Let me share the chorus and you will see what I mean: "The Anchor holds, though the ship is battered. The Anchor holds, though the sails are torn. Well I have fallen on my knees, as I faced the raging sea, but the Anchor holds in spite of the storm." Almost from the time we received the tape, I have listened to this song at least once or twice each morning as I am getting dressed. The words to this song serve to remind me of WHOM my Anchor is, and that I am secure in His love. There is no doubt about it, when I come to the office I am better prepared to face the opportunities and the challenges that await me.

Please understand that I have no financial interest and just wanted to share a resource that has been a blessing to me. The CDs are only $10 and can be ordered by calling the church at 1-760-745-2541 or from their Web site .

(Jim Davidson is a motivational speaker and syndicated columnist. You may contact him at 2 Bentley Drive, Conway, AR 72034.)