Years ago when hand pumps were invented to draw water from pipes that accessed underground aquafers, there was a life given mandate among those who had such pumps. Next to each hand pump there was always left a pail of water, full to the brim. When one came and drew water for their livestock or for the home they always left a pail of water at the pump to use to prime the pump the next time. It took the bucket of water poured down the shaft to break the stranglehold of air in the pipe shaft and create the flow of water. Without that bucket of water one may or may not be able to break that vapor lock and create the flow. It was learned about the rural countryside that when you drew water from the pump you always left the full bucket for whomever came after you to prime the pump .
A while ago here in west Texas we had a sudden burst of unaccumstomed arctic air that resulted in broken water mains and broken pipes that resulted in a sudden drop in the supply of reservoir water to supply the community. The lack of water called for conservation. No extra usage for 24 hours so that the reservoirs could be filled. The conversation that developed pointed out and reminded me of the story of the bucket and the pump. Should the last person to draw from the well take their water and leave the priming bucket empty (or worse yet took the bucket as a container) the next person who came would not be able to get the water at all. The reality is that the next time that last individual came to the well they would discover that they, too, were subject to their own inability to leave something for the next person. I believe that we are, as a people, at that point today. We have been way too quick to take the last bucket and now we see that it is not such a good idea to take for ourselves what is necessary for others without sharing. We have reached the point of the descending spiral. If we don’t react positively on behalf of one another, share the wealth of our resources, share in the conservation of our resources, and be comfortable with that and knowledgeable in that, we, ourselves, no matter what level that we are living at, will reach the day where the pump is dry and there is nothing there to prime it because we refused to leave the priming bucket with water for those who would come after us, even those who were family, friends, relatives or neighbors. Then, finally, it will be ourselves.
*A copy of one of the writings from my primary site at unorthodoxchristianity.com