Jason came to with a groan. The first thing he noticed was that his head was hurting. The second was that he was in what looked like a hospital bed. The third was that there was someone sitting in a chair beside him.
“Who are you?” he croaked. He tried to lick his lips and clear his throat, but to no avail.
“Easy, now,” the man cautioned Jason as he tried to sit up in the bed. The increasing pain in his head was caution enough; Jason laid back down on the bed.
“Let’s start with who you are. Do you remember that?”
Of course he remembered. Wasn’t that what he’d been trying to forget for the last year?
“I’m Jason Shaw. I came here a year ago, last night I fell off the bridge south of town, and right now I could really use some water.”
“Hmm. Good enough,” gruffed the man as he picked up a glass of water on the table beside the bed and held it out for Jason to drink. “The name matches the one on your ID, so that’s good.”
“Your turn,” said Jason between gulps of water. The let him finish the glass and then set it back on the table.
“My name is Winston O’Dare,” he said. “I was out in my boat especially early this morning. I saw you hit your head when you went over the side of the bridge. Fell smack into the water. It took some work to haul you into my boat, but luckily I have some experience with the nets.”
Jason closed his eyes against the memory. Last night he’d been perfectly content to end it all, and by some fluke misstep he’d been fished right out of the water.
“I didn’t mean to –” he started to explain, but Winston O’Dare cut him off.
“Now, you and I both know you didn’t exactly ‘fall’ off that bridge. But I don’t think it’s any coincidence that I was there to get you out. I don’t normally set the boat out that early in the morning; I had just decided to spend a little extra time with just me, God, and the clear night sky. Clearly he had other plans for me this morning. I’m thinkin’ he has other plans for you too.” O’Dare leaned forward in the chair until Jason opened his eyes, instantly caught in the fisherman’s intense gaze. “The question is, is that bridge really what you want out of life? Or are you willing to let God show you the plans he has in mind?”