Several years ago, we had almost finished rebuilding our house after the devastation of Hurricane Ivan. When it came time to choose appliances, I let Polly take the lead. To me, a dishwasher is a dishwasher. The only exception was the coffeemaker. I was like a six year old in Toys-R-Us when I saw the coffee maker of my dreams. I am a sucker for unusual gadgets and this particular coffee maker was very unusual.
It was a wall-mounted unit that actually allowed one to choose strength and quantity, then at the push of a button, would grind and compress the beans, finally forcing hot water through the grinds to produce as little as one cup at a time. Incredible! I enjoyed a cup at the urging of an extremely talented salesperson and was sold. I loved it.
Polly, on the other hand, thought I was crazy. She reminded me about how much coffee we drink (not much) and listened skeptically as I used that very fact as my argument for a coffee maker that would brew one cup at a time! “After all,” I pointed out, “we would never drink a whole pot and ‘wastefulness’ is a sin!”
“It’s expensive,” she stated.
“A business necessity,” I countered. “I am, after all, an author. And as slowly as I write, how am I supposed to stay awake without good, strong coffee?”
I’ll spare you the details that include a bit of pouting on my part, but today (in fact, right this very minute) I drink coffee from “my” special coffeemaker!
The only thing I neglected to consider during my quest for this particular appliance was the lack of a waterline existing at its planned location. “No problem,” I was told. “The unit has a water tank that can be filled manually.”
True enough, I still don’t drink much coffee, but it seems like every time I do, I get to see the digital command: FILL WATER TANK.
It turns out that as much as I still like my overpriced coffee maker, the unit itself has become an obvious metaphor for my life. Usually friendly and highly functional, if the water tank is not filled on a daily basis, it becomes a useless item taking up valuable space.
Personally, I find that my own “water tank” is in constant need of attention. My regular devotions, purposeful reading, and quiet time are not luxuries in my life—they are necessary on an every day basis for me to continue becoming the husband, daddy, friend, mentor, and communicator I desire to be.
So my question for you is simple:
1. What actions have you determined are necessities in your life to keep you on track?
2. How do you fill your water tank?