Interview with Old Fisherman from Keoni’s Big Question by Patti B. Ogden
What is your relationship to Keoni?
I have been the family’s neighbor for many years. They were so kind to me after my dear wife passed on. They took me under their wing and let me be a part of their lives. They are real Christians. I guess I am a grandfather figure to Keoni since he never got to know his grandparents because they stayed in Hawaii when his Momma and Papa moved to Ohio.
What is so special about your relationship with the little lad?
Keoni and I had a special bond right away. I guess I would describe that as an unseen force that just connected us. You know, sometimes you can meet a person and you just like them right away, everything about them. He is such a curious lad, but not just that, he has the perseverance of a coon after a crayfish. That boy will not give up until he gets what he needs. I admire that. The most special thing is – I kind of think he admires me too. He listens real well. That is unusual for a child his age.
What do you two like to do together?
Well, I love to fish. Guess that’s why they all call me Old Fisherman. Keoni wanted to learn how to fish when he was old enough to go along. So that’s what we do the most. I like to be surrounded by nature. I feel closer to God that way. I feel that has rubbed off on Keoni too, at least I hope so. I wanted to be able to show him how to appreciate what God has created.
On the day of the storm, what thoughts drifted through your mind when you saw that Keoni was troubled about something?
I knew something serious was troubling the boy that day. He was trying to keep up appearances with me, like commenting on the ducks we spotted on the river. The kind of small talk that people say like “It sure seems like it might rain today.” When they don’t feel like it’s polite to talk about what is really bothering them.
So I just started praying to the Lord to give me wisdom on how to help Keoni. The main thing that the Lord showed me is to wait. He’d show me when to say something. I sure wasn’t prepared for all that happened that day! Just shows you that when you let the Lord be in control, amazing things can happen.
Tell us what significant things happened that day?
In all my born days I hadn’t been caught out on the water in a storm. My days in the Navy taught me better than that. The storm came up so fast, caught me off guard. Trying to protect Keoni was my number one priority, he was so scared and I felt so bad about that. Just made me pray harder and now I know it taught him to pray too.
I really believe God allowed that storm to come so Keoni could have that experience with Him. He really got an answer from God Himself. That made it so personal to Keoni that after the storm, he thought to ask ME his big question. That’s when God moved me to speak and Keoni received his revelation. Praise God!
What made you cry about that rainbow after the storm?
I have seen many tragic things in my life. At one point during the storm I feared for our lives. When that rainbow appeared it was a sign to me that God had heard and answered our prayers and it touched me so much.
If you could tell the people something, what would it be?
Please take the time and with quiet sensitivity, teach children about the joys of the Lord. It will be the most rewarding experience of your life.
Thank you, Old Fisherman for visiting us today!