By Rev Alan Millar
In a previous article I mentioned that the manse Iris and I lived in, while in Canada, was supplied by well water. The well had been dug twenty feet down into bedrock known as the Pre-Cambrian Shield which covers over half of Canada stretching north from the Great Lakes to the Arctic Ocean.
Water drains through the cracks in the rock into the well at the bottom of which was a foot valve that sucks water into the house via an electric pump in the basement.
This story relates to the time when I had to melt snow on the stove to get my coffee fix!
Ken, the parishioner, after making the repair duly switched on the pump to draw in water, but nothing happened - no water was being drawn. It was one of those ‘oh, oh’ moments. Undaunted Ken asked me for a cup of water. I reluctantly let him have the precious little taste of water I had melted for my coffee. The story of Elijah and the crucible of oil and little meal came to mind. (1 Kings 17:8-15).
But rather than drinking the cup of water, Ken poured it into a container inside the pump. When he switched the pump on again the pump began to draw in all the water we needed.
The pump needed to primed, and a small cup of water was used to give us gushing water once again.
In the Bible, John 4, we read of the woman at the well from whom Jesus asked for a cup of water. The giving of that cup of water was, in fact, an invitation for the woman to receive the water of eternal life. 10: Jesus answered and said to her: “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, ‘Give Me a drink,’ you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.”
This living water was perfectly described by Fanny Cosby in her hymn ‘All the way my saviour leads me.’
“All the way my Saviour leads me, Cheers each winding path I tread; Gives me grace for every trial, Feeds me with the living Bread. Though my weary steps may falter, And my soul athirst may be, Gushing from the Rock before me, Lo! A spring of joy I see;
Gushing from the Rock before me, Lo! A spring of joy I see.”