Don’t Judge a Fish-or Mammal-By Its Fins

By Sandy Kirby Quandt

Have you ever made judgements based on what you think is true, only to find what you thought was so, isn’t?

When you think of hot surf spots does Surfside, or Galveston Beach, Texas come to mind? Probably not…unless you live on the Gulf Coast of Texas.

Pilot surfs. I don’t. Although Pilot has tried to teach me to surf, and teaches others the skill, I blame back issues and a lack of ability to stand up on the board for my not conquering the sport.

Several years back, Pilot and I had a lovely picnic dinner at Surfside beach the day before school began. I had a broken bone in my foot, which refused to heal, and was content to dangle from my boogie board while Pilot surfed.

While I dangled and twirled in the water, a school of silver bait fish jumped over my head. My first thought was Beautiful. In an instant, my second was Oh, no!

Pilot had just ridden a wave to shore. He turned, saw the fish, and had the same thought I did.


Being an intelligent person, I realized  none of the ripples which passed for waves that day would take me safely to shore. With my broken foot, I knew I’d never out swim a shark.

I resigned myself to having Pilot call in a substitute teacher for me while I  spent at least the first day of school in a hospital, recovering from a shark bite. It’d make a great story to tell my fifth graders, don’t you think?

As Pilot rushed to reach me, the shark got closer…

and turned into a dolphin.

Thank you, Jesus!

Like me mistaking a dolphin fin for a shark, have you ever looked at a situation, circumstance, or person, and made a judgement which upon closer inspection, turned out to be incorrect?

Maybe said something we shouldn’t have, based on what we thought were facts? Acted on errant truth and done more harm than good? Stayed away from a safe situation because we were suspicious?

We lacked discernment. The ability to see and understand people, things, or situations clearly and intelligently.

Are there situations or people we need to deal with differently? Probably. Words we need to leave unspoken? Most assuredly. Words of life we need to speak? Undoubtedly.

Are we mistaking dolphins for sharks?

What to do? I think one thing would be to ask God to give us discernment and wisdom to know the difference. He will, you know. Another thing is to keep pressing on…even when we still don’t get it.

Leave your comments below to share your thoughts on the subject. If you think others would appreciate reading this, please share it through the social media buttons.

But if any of you lack wisdom, you should pray to God, who will give it to you; because God gives generously and graciously to all. James 1:5 (GNT)

I wish you well.


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2 thoughts on “Don’t Judge a Fish-or Mammal-By Its Fins

  1. Excellent! Enjoyed the article and the music……Sandy has a fan on me. I look forward to every message.


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