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What's Your Artesian Well?

Linda and I loved living in Olympia, Washington for twelve years, from 2006 to 2018.  

Well, we mostly loved it. The gray and the rain – forty percent more than Seattle – can drag your spirit downward. But the natural beauty, the clean air, and the abundance of evergreen trees make it a special place at the south end of the Puget Sound.

The now defunct Olympia Brewing Company had a fitting slogan – It’s the water!  That partially stemmed from an unusual characteristic of the region – there are approximately one hundred crystal clear artesian wells beneath and around the cities of Olympia, Tumwater, and Lacey.

What’s an artesian well? Due to the underground pressure of an aquifer, groundwater rises to the surface without pumping. There’s one in downtown Olympia, a revered treasure with its steady flow of water. Like thousands, I have been refreshed by the water of that well.

The Blue Spigot is one of my spiritual artesian wells.

Since the 1970’s I have been writing down the accounts of God’s hand in my life in what I call my Book of Stones. An inward pressure to bring those stories to the surface gave birth to The Blue Spigot in August 2021.

After a year of opening weekly, a more manageable monthly pace was adopted. Most of the narratives have spotlighted the Good Shepherd’s guidance and grace, but periodic posts on my work as a chaplain and a few on the Psalms have given it a reflective tone.

Don’t worry. The Blue Spigot is not closing. But it is transitioning once again into a new season, just as I am.

I’m retiring from vocational ministry at the end of this year, 2024. Linda and I long for a season where our time is not dictated by my work schedule.  I’m already laying the foundation for that next chapter, which will include playing golf regularly, volunteering for the Epilepsy Foundation, and improving my photography skills. 

And yes, I will continue to write.

I’ve got another internal Artesian well that has been percolating for twenty years, and want to develop a publishing proposal before my retirement begins.  I wish I was disciplined enough to also produce fresh material every month.

For a season, the monthly pace for the Blue Spigot will continue, but with either short posts or reprisals/ slight rewrites of one of the sixty-plus posts written so far.  The web page will still be there for you to explore at your leisure, and if you’re a subscriber, you will get a notice in your email inbox when there’s a post.

Let’s switch gears. Here’s a good question for you, in this chapter of your life: What’s your internal artesian well?  What has God placed on your heart that has been waiting for you to release, full of life and love?


Or maybe I should ask – what compels you?

For Christ’s love compels us … that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again. 2 Corinthians 5:14-15

Think of that. Being compelled to live – not for yourself, but for the one who died for you!

What would that mean? It could be something small yet powerful, like being a small beacon of light in your neighborhood. It might call for a larger re-shuffling of your priorities and your resources.  

There’s something wonderful about having a purpose in life, with life-giving water flowing from deep inside you (John 7:38).* Jesus said that happens to everyone who believes in him.

What’s your artesian well?  If you have one, is there something that has kept it from coming to the surface?

Benediction of Blessing

  • May you have a strong sense of God’s love for you and delight in you, as you continue to serve him and live for him.

  • May you sense the presence of a life-giving stream within you, God’s Spirit.

  • May you be open to the idea of letting God bring that love and life to the surface for others to be blessed through you.


* Contemporary English Version (CEV).



Olympia Artesian Well: Thurston Talk, Inc.

Flowing spigot: Shutterstock


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