The Goldfish from the Fair! - A Dose of Encouragement

Everyone in our family loves babies.

Everyone also loves cute little animals like small cuddly puppies, tortoises, ducklings 

Everyone loves other larger animals even if we each do have our distinct favourites. 


        we had never had a family pet!

Well before Fred & I got married I had always wanted a dog but Fred grew up on a farm and so his attitude was
        "a dog is a working animal!".

Then when the kids were young I was working as a Mathematics teacher and Fred's job meant he did a lot of travelling so it did not seem like a good idea to have a pet.

Yes you probably guessed it - I did not want to have to take all the responsibility for it and who would look after it during the day when we were all out at work and school!

Then we moved to live in America for 3 years and as we were moving we did talk about how it was a good thing that we had not had any pets.

So you will understand too that knowing we were only in the US for a few years we were not going to even consider having a pet there.
Not until we decided to take a day out to the State Fair - and we ended up coming home with not just one pet but 4.

Yes four Goldfish that the kids won at some event - I don't even remember what event now all these years later.

They were in a small plastic bag so on the way home we stopped off and got some fish food and then at home I let them use my large clear glass mixing bowl.

We set them on the table and just watched them swim around and around and said how cute they were and then gradually one by one we got bored watching and went on to making dinner etc.
We thought they should have a little something to eat too so sprinkled a little of their food into the bowl.

Of course when you have a pet you need a name but we needed 4 names - if there had been 5 goldfish we could have used our five names but because there were only 4 we decided to name them after the kids so the largest became Jonathan, the next largest became Daniel and the next became Linda leaving us with the smallest one whom we called Tiny - oh how imaginative we can be!!

So off to bed we went that night.

Down for breakfast in the morning and someone glanced at the bowl and we heard the cry

"one of the fish is just floating in the water"

We all looked into the bowl and true enough 3 were swimming around and 1 was just lying there - it was Tiny.

Now they definitely had all been ok the night before as that picture above shows, but overnight poor Tiny had died.

We felt very sad, we could not even look after a fish for one day!

Fred talked to the kids about how hot it had been at the fair and how the goldfish had been in that small plastic bag exposed to the sunlight for a long period of time and Tiny had been the smallest of the four so probably he had suffered the most from the heat on the water.

So we mourned the death of Tiny but at least it hadn't been Jonathan, Daniel or Linda.

Later that day we sprinkled a little food into the bowl again and every now and again we would look at the 3 goldfish swimming thinking how it must be boring to do that all the time.

Next morning at breakfast we realised that we had another death on our hands yes Goldfish Linda was now floating on top of the water.
The next day it was Daniel's turn to float and the following day it was Jonathan.

One after another our four pets had died - what kind of people were we!

All we could think of was the fact that we had not had them very long so the children had not got very "attached to them", thank goodness!

Well I want to encourage you that God is not like us.

Have you become a child of God?

Do you know that even from before you were born He has been "attached to you".

He is the one who Created you in the first place and He is the one who Loves you at all times.

God knows you better than anyone else does.

We found out some time later that we had fed the goldfish too often.

Although we had got the right food for them we had not fed them properly.

So if you feel smothered by others,

        or if you feel neglected by others,

                or if you feel like you are not sure where to turn at times

                        or if you feel that there is just too much to read in God's Word

                                or if you feel there are too many different people telling you what to do


Remember God is not like us

God knows the best way to look after you as part of His family.

God will feed you in the right way.
God will love you in the perfect way.
God will lead you in the way of righteousness.

God will do for us what we cannot do for ourselves. We just have to give Him our lives and let Him lead us.

Yes!  God will do for us what we cannot do for ourselves.

Yes!  We just have to give Him our lives and let Him lead us.

I am thankful that God will not neglect us or kill us by accident as we did with the goldfish.

We are safe with God.


  1. You reminded me of the 2 fish we had last summer. It was a project for our little guys. It started off well. The fish are no longer with us a year later. Your post is so true! I've been doing a "grace" word study and this fits right in!

  2. Ah, yes, fish. We've got goldfish that have lived over 7 years now- thanks to a tank filter and moving water. It makes a big difference.

    Thanks for the reminder that God is always "attached" to us!

  3. This makes me laugh and think about the time my father extended our driveway and placed new concrete over where I had previously buried my pet goldfish. At age six, I was worried that my fish would NOT be able to be raised again during the rapture. Ah, thanks for this post. So thankful our God is such a good Father!

  4. We have always been 'dog people' currently we have 4! and it is always a terrible loss when one of them passes, but what a good reminder you gave of how deeply attached God is to his children and how much sorrow He must have over those who choose to reject Him! thanks!!

  5. I am reminded of a verse from Numbers, which highlights one of the differences between men and God: "God is not human, that he should lie, not a human being, that he should change his mind. Does he speak and then not act? Does he promise and not fulfill?" (Numbers 23: 19). People may let us down, hurt us, break promises or feed the goldfish too often! Haha. But we can always rely on God. :-)

  6. "I am thankful that He will not neglect us or kill us by accident as we did with the goldfish." ME TOO! What a wonderful story to remind us that God loves and cares for us.

  7. Sandra, so great to visit with you today!

    God will feed you in the right way.
    God will love you in the perfect way.
    God will lead you in the way of righteousness. <--- Thank so much for sharing these beautiful truths!

    Peace and blessings to you, Love! :-)

  8. So grateful our God knows exactly what we need to be fed each day.And He doles it out each day. Visiting from True Story & I am glad that I did!

  9. Your post brought up memories of times we had gold fish that did not last too long. Yes over feeding can hurt them. Your children did learn about having a pet, and even though they were not too attached, it still hurts to have a pet die. Pets do need care and during this hot weather, we are allowing our two old dogs to come in the house. I noticed in the news some hikers took their dogs on a hot hike, and the dogs needing water and cooling down, did not survive the outing. It is good to do research before taking on a pet because they become like a part of the family. Thank you for sharing your lovely story with us here at Tell me a Story.

  10. Anonymous04:45

    Since God created us, he know much more than we ourselves know what we are made of, and what we need and don't need:)

  11. Nice anecdote to make your point...I've always had pets until my cat recently died....I hope to get another-but for now life is full♪

  12. Amen! I too am thankful He won't "kill us by accident like we did the goldfish." AMEN!

  13. This was a beautiful analogy! I once had a single Molly, a jet black fish and did not know they had live births until the next morning when I woke up to find my little fish bowl teaming with dozens of baby molly's! I am smiling at that memory. Those state fair goldfish seem to have short life spans. Poor fishy's! Enjoy a wonderful week.

  14. Love your blog emphasis on DOES matter! And LOVE the reminder that "God is not like us." Thank goodness! Blessings on your day...stopping by from the Ra-Ra Link-up!

  15. Fish are the hardest pets to take care of! I have had hamsters, and we now have a cat and a dog, but we have killed every single fish we have ever had. I like how you related this back to God though. Thanks for sharing this great post on #SocialButterflySunday this week :) Hope you will link up again on Sunday :)

  16. What a great analogy.

    I always feel graced when I visit your posts.

    Thank you for linking to the letter G.


  17. Such a simple story, but a big truth. Thanks for sharing : ) #ThoughtProvokingThursday

  18. I remember the winning of goldfish at a festival very well. My sons each won a fish and names them Fred and Barney. Well fate stepped in and neither one made it very long. Lots of life lessons were learned from those two fish. I am thankful for your reminder that God will always take care of His family and fill in the gaps when we are not able. Blessed you shared this at The Weekend Brew.

  19. Oh, Fair Fish! I always dreaded my son bringing them home because I knew what will happen to them. I would either be the one to care for it or it would die. I'm so thankful God doesn't dread caring for me and His care is perfect! Thank you for linking up with Thankful Thursdays.

  20. Aw, poor fish. We had two dogs and as hard as it was to lose them when theyou passed, it is better for our unpredictable lifestyle. Thanks for sharing with Small Victories Sunday linkup. Pinned to our linkup board.

  21. I totally identify with this post. We have had pets for awhile, but it was on my bucket list to have a fish... So for my daughter's second birthday this year, I got her a beta.

    Which subsequently died a week later. (I didn't order a water bowl heater.)

    So, I tried again with Splash the Second, and he is still kicking 6 months later (that's like 80 years in fish-world, right?)

    Very glad the Lord know just what we need. Thanks for sharing Sandra!