Becoming a Trillionaire Overnight
That’s what happened to Ira and Ann Yates on October 28, 1926. They had traded their small store in Rankin Texas for a 26,000 acre ranch “west of the Pecos.” Their family and friends thought they had lost their ever-loving minds. Nothing was west of the Pecos except trouble. There was some newly discovered oil exploration in West Texas in the early 1920’s but nothing west of the Pecos.
For several years they struggled to pay the taxes. The drought took their sheep and goats. The blowing sand nearly drove Mrs. Yates crazy. The ranch was about to go under. In desperation, Ira contacted a friend who worked for Transcontinental Oil to see if they would be willing to drill a test well on his ranch. They were not interested because the “experts” of the day did not believe there was any oil “west of the Pecos.”
Yates finally convinced Transcontinental to try a test well. After 23 days of drilling, at a depth of 1,000 feet, the Yates 1-A came in. A gusher. It spewed oil, rocks, and chunks of earth hundreds of feet in the air. They dammed up a large draw to catch the oil, which soon became a lake of black gold.
Over the next three years, several more wells were drilled producing over 41 million barrels of oil. Then in 1929 the Yates 30-A came in producing 200,000 barrels of oil a day! A world record. Oil at that time was being sold at $1.19/barrel. In 1929 $238,000 a day was a lot of money. Today it would equate to about $3.4 million a day! From just one well! A new town sprung up as a result of the Yates oil field. They named it Ira-ann after the Yates couple. Today it is Iraan, Texas.
On January 11, 1989 the Yates Field, now one of the largest oil producing fields in the world, produced it’s 1 billionth barrel. Today, it is still producing, and it is estimated that there is an additional billion barrels of oil still in the field. The Yates family went from dirt poor to multi-billionaires overnight.
When I hear that story, I think of the poor guy that traded his ranch and ended up with the store in Rankin selling dry goods. I also think of the many days that Ira and Ann must have considered selling out and getting out from under the financial burden of a piece of land that was worthless, not knowing that they were sitting on billions of dollars of oil.
Many Christians live in that same ignorance today, not knowing of the unsearchable riches that are found in Christ. In 1 Corinthians 2:12 it says, “We have not received the spirit of the world, but the Spirit Who is from God, in order that we might understand the things freely given to us by God.” That verse tells me that the Holy Spirit, as my Teacher and Guide, will lead me to discover the surpassing wealth and value of what I am already in possession of in Christ and Him in me, if I am willing to spend the time with Him each day, studying, praying, and seeking after Him. He is of greater value than all the oil and gold and precious jewels that have ever been found or ever will be.
Start drilling some test wells today. In Christ, you are already in possession of an eternity of wealth.
©2012 Bubba Stahl. Posted on July 9, 2012 at Bubba Stahl’s blog