February 18, 2019
There are 6 inches of snow outside my home this morning. It’s fluffy light snow that blows around easily and moves gracefully when it floats down from the trees. It’s also sitting on large patches of ice that froze instead of soaking into the ground after the last warm day melted the snow we got a week ago. As this is our first winter in the new home, we are delighted with each new snow fall and the beauty of it.
For decades we lived in an area where rain was measured in hundredths of an inch, where people had to choose between gravel or dirt for their landscape options, where children would go outside to stand in the rain because it was such a rare sight in their short little lives. Yup. We lived in California.
This year they are struggling with record breaking rains after devastating fires. The land that was parched and dry has been torched and baked. Now it is being saturated beyond it’s ability to absorb. Mudslides, run off, flooding and destruction on top of destruction.
And I sit with the snow gently falling, neatly piled up and contemplate the power of water.
At the bottom of my WordPress boxes is one that measures “readability”. It says I have “too little content, please add some content to enable a good analysis.” This seems appropriate for my whole blog lately. Far too little content.
Don’t get me wrong. I love to write. I would do little else but write and read and re-read. (Notice I didn’t say re-write. I do not enjoy the re-write parts.) But lately I have felt like I had too little content.
I just wrapped up a part time temp job where my days were spent sitting in a cubicle on the second floor waiting for the doorbell to be rung on the first floor so I could go down and answer it. In the afternoon, I emptied and reset two very nice coffee machines. It was less than fulfilling on any level. It was dry. Draught dry.
I took the job with the promise that it would lead to a full time permanent job supporting a couple of upper level managers at a major international corporation. When I found out I was not even being considered for the full time position, I left. I felt like I had wasted enough of my life waiting for someone else to decide I could move forward.
I picked up my shovel and started to dig my own well.
Years ago, Harvey MacKay wrote a book called Dig Your Well Before You’re Thirsty. I have an autographed copy in one of the 100 boxes of books I have not unpacked yet. I plan to dig it, and several others, out (pun intended) when I go to the basement to start laundry later today. I met Harvey at a luncheon years ago and as impressed as I was by what he said, I was also young and clueless. I am not as young and think I might finally have a clue.
Just about a dozen years ago, I stumbled into an amazing gathering of women. Some younger, some older and many my own age. Putting aside all the fears junior high and high school had instilled in me about women my own age, I risked getting to know them and the very dangerous part of letting them get to know me. Little did I know I was digging my well. I did recognize I was already thirsty.
Most of these women I have never met in person. A few I have been honored to spend time with and those are joyous memories. These women have been a source of inspiration, comfort, advice, laughter and a constant blessing to my heart. They have been brave enough to be open and honest with me even when they knew me well enough to know the truth was both going to hurt and help me.
These women came together in a forum called The Well. We all knew the story of the woman at the well. Social outcast, fallen women, shunned and shamed, unwanted, unloved, and yet offered Living Water by the One who knew it all and offered her life. We found Living Water beside that well together. We offered hope and love and encouragement. We listened to each others’ stories and hearts. We walked together through some very hard places.
And today, we still do. The Well as we knew it has been closed for years but we picked up our shovels and dug a new one. And, yes, it flows with Living Water. We found each other there day after day. And the One who offers life mets us there, in the prayers and encouragement that flow through the words of each woman.
Some of us are surrounded with snow today, some are bracing for more rain, some are scanning the horizon for a small cloud of hope….
But each of us have a well that never runs dry. I have plenty of content….