Priming Faith

A Faith Fable (my telling of a classic story)

The man had been hiking in the wilderness for hours, thinking about his troubles and asking God many questions but feeling he was getting no answers. He was tired of trusting, of trusting in God. There seemed to be so little evidence that having a faith in God was of any value.

But as he walked his thoughts focused more and more on his thirst. He had inadvertently spilled the remainder of his canteen’s water. It was hot, he was dehydrated, exhausted, and worried he might die. He was taking what he thought was a short-cut back to where he had begun his hike but was still worried he might not make it back to civilization.

Just when he thought he could go no further he came upon an old hand pump. A jug was next to the old pump. Uncorking the jug he found, to his great relief, it was filled with water. Under the jug was a note. “Use this water to prime the pump, pouring it down the shaft. The pump will then provide all the water you need. Please refill the jug for the next traveler.”

The man debated. Should he attempt to prime the pump or drink the water instead?

He decided to prime the pump. He poured the contents of the jug down the shaft of the pump, set down the empty jug, grasped the handle of the pump and began to pump vigorously. First, nothing happened. He began to doubt his decision but continued to pump. A trickle of water came from the pump! He kept pumping and the water finally gushed forth! He drank deeply, rested, drank deeply again, and refilled his canteen and the jug before continuing his journey.

Making it back to civilization he was much relieved and began reflecting on his adventure. He was glad he had taken the step of faith and poured the water down the pump to prime it. It occurred to him that on his journey of life he was also being asked to take steps of faith, especially with God. He decided to believe that God had, indeed, been with Him when he was lost and had used the old pump to teach him about faith thereby saving him in more than one way.

“Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” Hebrews 11:1

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