Things I Have Learned From my Fish Tank

Okay, so this will be weird but owning a fish tank has really made me grow as a person. No I’m not some crazy fish advocate or something, there is a story here though, I promise. This past year has been pretty hard at times. One of my closest friend’s died in a tragic accident, my Grandma passed away, and my childhood pet cat died as well. I was beginning to feel a little lonely and sad at all the deaths that occurred and tried to get a new pet cat to hug and have around. I am not a crazy cat lady, but I do find it comforting to have a pet. Anyway, I was unable to house a new cat in my current living situation so it got me thinking of fish. I could comfortably own fish where I live, they would keep me company in an odd sort of fishy way, and it would give me something to do while I was going through so much bad. It was a good plan! (Despite the fact that fish can’t hug.) It turns out it was a good plan, but a really hard plan to execute. I found myself very quickly sympathizing with God and what He might go through while taking care of us. I’m definitely not trying to demean God or be heretical, but I definitely thought of what He must go through trying to take care of humans.

First, my fish kept dying. It turns out fish need really specific living conditions that I had NO idea about. Lesson 1: research about the fish you intend to keep! The tank was too small and then the water was too acidic. Then there was not enough heat and not enough places to hide. God is a genius. It is so hard to create safe living conditions in a small, little, itsy bitsy 10- gallon tank and God has the entire universe to take care of. How he got all the conditions right for life, I don’t know if I could ever fathom.

Second, feeding the fish can be nightmarish. I may be exaggerating a bit, but I’ve come to learn that certain fish are very picky eaters. Moreover, some fish eat other fish and others only eat plant matter. Then you have to figure out which fish can go with which other fish! The fact that God provides us with food is beyond me. It is hard to feed 5 little fish.

Third, they bring such joy. I never really cared for the idea of fish much before this. I thought some fish were really creepy. However, after owning these little guys for some time, I have come to love them in a strange way. They have no names other than “little fishy guy” and they do weird things that I don’t understand, but their is something special about them. When I sit in front of their tank and they swim over and stare right at me, I know that it is something like a little fishy hello. I imagine God must feel like that sometimes with us. We do something sort of weird and not exactly how He may communicate, but He knows that we are saying a little humany hello to Him and that must bring Him great joy.

All in all, I’m glad I got some fish although I would still like a cat one day. In such a simple way, God has somehow used His creation to speak to me and reflect on His sovereignty over the Universe. Academics are great teaching and learning tools, but sometimes living life brings the most meaningful and memorable lessons.

-Katie