Priming the Pump

>> Tuesday, January 22, 2013

I’ve never actually primed a pump. In books and magazines, I’ve seen their rustic beauty against the backdrop of windswept fields. To operate one, the handle needed to be pumped up and down to draw water up from underground. Some took only a few pumps … others wore you out before the water finally spilled forth from the depths.

A few days ago I ran out of my Aveeno lotion … a plastic bottle with a pump on top. As I primed the pump to draw lotion from the new container, my thoughts turned to human beings.

Many times we have to prime the pump to ascertain who they really are. Sometimes the information flows quickly and freely. For others, they may not even be aware of what drives them. Therefore, it takes a lot of priming to get to the real stuff.

As a parent, I learned one way to prime the pump was to get the child in the car and take a drive. Something about not having to look in my face gave them freedom to share … dreams, fears, and wrongdoings … as we drove the streets.
There is so much value inside a human being we have to be willing to put forth the effort needed … sometimes taking years … to get in touch with the real person.

To prime the pump effectively requires a lot of time and listening.

 Post this at all the intersections, dear friends: Lead with your ears, follow up with your tongue, and let anger straggle along in the rear.” James 1:19 (MSG) 


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