The Little Pond That Got Fresh

The Little Pond That Got Fresh

"Give, and it will be given to you; good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over. . . ."—Luke 6:38

Once there was a very unhappy pond of water. It was unhappy because it hated to give away any of itself. For it was a selfish little pond.

It was located in a small valley through which ran a tiny stream. Some farmer in years past had built a small earthen dam and caused the water to back up a few yards, thus creating the little pond.

The pond, being a selfish and foolish pond, did not stop to think that it existed only because a stream ran into it on the upper side. It thought only of the water it lost over the spillway at the other end. To see this water, even though it was a small amount, running on downhill caused it to be very unhappy.

"If there was only some way to keep all this water," it said to itself, "then I could be much deeper, perhaps the deepest pond in the whole countryside."

Finally it hit upon a plan: "I'll stop the spillway! Then no more water can drain out. That's the way!"

So it concentrated on the grass and weeds that grew along the spillway. Soon the vegetation was so thick and high that no water could escape. It rose higher and higher, inch by inch.

Terrible things happened below, in the next field, and the next, and the next. The cattle and sheep and horses that depended on the tiny stream flowing through the pond now had no water. Their masters had to haul water for the poor thirsty beasts.
The fishes, tadpoles, and frogs in the stream below all died.

You might think that all this suffering would make the selfish pond change its mind and open the spillway—but no! Not on your life. For being a selfish pond, it thought only of itself.

But soon a change occurred that was not a pleasant one. Thick, slimy green stuff appeared on the pond's surface. It never had that trouble before. Also, boys and girls quit swimming in the pond. Not that the pond liked children, but it liked the news and chatter they brought along. The pond was very proud of the raft they had built out in the middle that was now unused. One day the pond was cut to the quick when it heard a boy, standing on the bank, say, "This old pond smells bad. I don't like it anymore!"

That night the little pond did some very serious thinking. It saw what a selfish, foolish pond it had been and how impossible it was just to add to one's own size without causing some suffering and finally your own unhappiness.

The next morning it asked the weeds and grass that had been clogging up the spillway to move over. Then the top water gushed out—down the hill, filling the dried-up stream bed. Along with the surface water went all the slimy green stuff. Once more the pond sparkled clear and clean in the sunlight. Not only did it look different—it felt different. Within a few days there were dozens and dozens of boys and girls splashing and playing around. And you never saw a happier little pond in your life!

It had learned what every pond and lake must know: It is the surface water you give away that makes you clean and beautiful. If you keep it all to yourself, you get stale and ugly.

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