On the last and greatest day of the Feast, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him.” By this he meant the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were later to receive. Up to that time the Spirit had not been given, since Jesus had not yet been glorified. John 7:37-39 (NIV)
We are blessed with an artesian well, a free flowing well, in our backyard. We do not need a pump to draw water from it as it emerges freely at the surface on its own accord. It comes directly from the aquifer and flows in a constant stream. In fact, we have to cut off the flow or it will constantly soak our land. This old well once watered a vegetable farm. Many years ago, clay pipes manufactured on our island were laid below the earth under the crops. Large drains connected to the pipes. The water was diverted into the drains and out into the pipes. From there, it filtered out into the earth in a very efficient irrigation system that kept the water below ground preventing its evaporation and waste. Even though there is an electric pump attached to our well, we rarely turn it on. The artesian well on its own will provide enough water to fill the horse’s buckets or to cool down a hot and sweaty horse. It is very different from a well that requires a pump. Today, many pumps work on electricity, but in parts of the world, hand pumps are still in use. In fact, at Alafaia State Park, hand pumps are stationed along the trails to pull water out for our thirsty horses. Sometimes, when a pump has been allowed to sit without use, we have to prime it by pouring water down into the mechanism. Then, we move the lever up and down rapidly creating a suction that in turn draws more water out. Although, I love the feel of the pump and the motion as the water gushes out of it, it is a lot of work to fill a water trough and give the horses enough to drink. I would not want to have to do it on a daily basis. Today, our pastor used the analogy to talk about the difference between a person who is spirit filled and who is not. He noted that some of us are like the artesian well. These people continually live in the Spirit and God’s love flows through them all the time. They are willing to do what it takes to tell others about God and to glorify Him in our lives. They do not have to be turned on or motivated, but seek ways and opportunities to serve. Other people are like the well that needs to be primed. Thy have to be begged to help out, cajoled into service, flattered into taking a part. If they don’t like how things are going, they will complain, quit or argue. It takes a lot or work to get these folks involved. Think about it. Which one are you? An artesian well that flows freely and generously or the well that needs to be pumped and primed before you take a part? Let the Holy Spirit flow through you, give generously and be that artesian well in your church and community.