The Bucket.

I heard someone one time say that in life we are all carrying around a bucket.  Some people have a bucket that’s full, and some people have one that’s empty.  The “bucket” is a metaphor for the things that people have said or done that have encouraged, challenged, inspired, and changed you.  Some people pour into your bucket.  Sometimes they do it through encouraging notes, through cards, or through letters.  Sometimes its through conversations and statements that quench your thirsty soul like long-needed water.  And then there are people that take away from your bucket,

After I heard this, I made it a point to keep every note of encouragement that anyone had ever written.  Here’s what it looks like today: 
I pulled it out this morning and began thumbing through the contents.  Some were small notes written to me while I was in college, some were encouragement cards from summer camps that I’ve attended.  Others were long, sincere letters of deep appreciation.  All of them were people that had poured into my bucket…
A friend telling me how much he respected my role in his life and appreciated my leadership style…
A guy on my floor reminding me that I had had the biggest role in leading him closer to God in college…
A girl I had just broken up with writing to me to tell me how much she appreciated and respected me even though we didn’t work out…
A former professor telling me that he saw something unique in me…
But by far, my favorite one was a old envelope, tattered from the years, that was sent to me by a seventh grade boy.  I had worked at a summer camp for a week in the panhandle of Oklahoma.  This kid was in my cabin that week… he was the type of kid who loved attention enough to do ridiculous things to get it…the type who was looking for something from everyone.  I immediately recognized it in him, because I used to be the same way.  Since the first day of camp, my heart pounded for this kid.  Everyone loved him, he was full of energy, but I could tell that behind it all he was searching for something. One night I pulled him aside and said ‘let’s take a walk.’  We walked around the campground and he told me his story.  He shared with me some painful details.  He told me how he never wanted to go to camp but someone had invited him.  I didn’t really think much of the talk, but a year later I got this letter in the mail.  He wrote about how much that talk had encouraged him during one of the darkest moments of his life so far… his parents had been going through a divorce and a bunch of other painful stuff.  He said that I may not have seen it, but our conversation had a radical impact on him. 
…he poured into my bucket…
Your words have the power to heal someone… to bandage broken hearts… to nudge someone towards healthy, beauty, and fullness.  Don’t ever underestimate that power.  Every moment, every intersection that you have with others, whether people close to you or even strangers, is a moment to either pour into their bucket, or take away from it.  Say what you need to say…

Who is pouring into yours? 
More importantly, who’s bucket are you pouring into? 

2 thoughts on “The Bucket.

  1. Assalam-o-AlaikumYou are very much right. I think you have a very deep thinking. Really we can feel very light after shaping our tensions and speake with others but there are some people who do not want to share their feelings what they can do? Have any answer? I am alhamdulillah a Muslim. I have a answer. Full believe in Almighty Allah will solve your all problems. I share all my problems with Allah and then I have a firm believe that Allah will resolve my problem insha'Allah. Allah always help me.One time just one time share with Allah. Believe me.With best wishes

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