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Photo: Jason Myres
The year 1986 contained tremendous financial challenges for our family. It was our son’s first year of college with all its heavy financial demands. It was also the year that my husband’s place of employment for 18 years closed their doors in Arden and moved to Phoenix. We chose to stay in Arden, so there was the problem of finding new employment. We were also faced with several major home repairs needing attention. The number-one priority was drilling a new well. The existing well supplied insufficient water, allowing only short showers and one load of wash a day.

My husband had received back vacation pay plus severance pay, so we decided to set aside $1,500 for a new well and pump. We contracted a local drilling company recommended by friends. In a few days a large rig was set up near the house.

The drilling began shortly after lunch. The morning had been spent leveling, bracing, and filling on-rig water tanks to lubricate the drilling bits. The crew was an interesting bunch wearing bandanas but no shirts and chewing tobacco—rather rough looking, but they knew their business.

I selected a grassy spot in the yard at a discrete distance and settled down to watch. The first 60 feet was just through dirt and went fast. At $6 a foot that was $360. Twenty-foot drilling bits were added, one at a time, as the depth increased. I also kept adding, $480, $600, $720, $840, and so on. When quitting time came that evening, I was devastated! They had drilled down 300 feet, $1,800, and still we had no water! In our area, well depths are typically about half of that.

I phoned family and friends for sympathy and prayers. What should we do? I begged for mercy from the well drillers. Their answer was, “You need the water; you’ll find the money.”

Water Began to Gush Up

The next morning the crew returned, and again I took up my look-out station. Soon the machine was up and running with another 20-foot section added. Suddenly water began to gush up out of the hole around the bit. When the drill bore down on the next stroke, the water shot higher than the 60-foot rig. It even poured down the adjacent hill! I ran over and asked, “Is that your on-board water, or is it our water?” The answer was, “Lady, we don’t carry that kind of water.”

What joy and excitement! I jumped up and down, I shouted, I even hugged the only well driller who was wearing a shirt. I couldn’t wait to tell everyone, anyone who would listen!

When we got around to asking about the flow rate, we were told they could measure only up to 50 gallons per minute, and they still could not pump it dry. Fifty gallons per minute! That was enough to supply a hospital! I would have been satisfied with five gallons a minute.

Talk about praising God from whom all blessings flow! That song surely took on new meaning for us. We felt God had sent special reassurance of His love and care in our time of need. His ability to “do exceeding, abundantly above all we ask or think” was clearly demonstrated to us.

For 19 years now I have watered our hill during the dry spells, sometimes 24 hours a day, and we still have plenty of wonderful, life-giving water. Whenever I set the sprinklers to spinning, I sense again God’s bountiful blessings watering our land and our grateful hearts. “Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good. His love endures forever” (Psalms 136:1).

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By Ruth Bradley. Reprinted with persmission from Signs of the Times, September 2006. Copyright © 2006 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines. Scripture take from the NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION ®.


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