Recently a good friend was telling me about how her kitchen faucet was broken. Her husband was out of town, so she’d put a sign on the faucet to remind herself and her kids to get water in the bathroom. It was a colossal pain for three days until her husband returned and fixed the problem. I could empathize with her frustration because I lived without a kitchen for five months during a remodel.
During the time of our remodel, I was reading a book called The Hole in Our Gospel by World Vision President Rich Stearns. Our whole church read it together over the course of six weeks. In fact, writing my thoughts about that book was what launched me into the world of blogging. The book opened the eyes of many people in our church to the tremendous needs existing among vast numbers of impoverished people around the world. Our church was so moved that we committed to investing time and resources in a village in Ethiopia for the next seven years. A lasting impact will be made as we build a school, sponsor kids, dig a well and provide support to help the people of Sintaro move from surviving to thriving.
I’ve had a small taste of the frustration of not having water readily accessible. For the people of Sintaro, this is a way of life. Three times a day they must hike down a steep ravine to get water from a dirty stream for all of their needs—from cooking to bathing to drinking. Women and children lug heavy jugs back up the trail to the village. It’s sobering to think about the amount of time they spend getting water. Having running water readily accessible is a pretty vital aspect of life. I think most of us who have it take it for granted. I know I do.
My husband and I have gotten involved with an event to raise money to dig a well in Sintaro Village. A team of us has been planning a hike for the community to “walk for water.” The people of Sintaro do it three times daily. We’ll do it for an hour on a Saturday to identify with their struggle and raise funds to make a lasting difference. The sponsorship money hikers contribute or raise will go directly into a fund to build the well in Sintaro Village. It’s a simple but exciting opportunity to make a difference. Registration has been open for the last month and we’re hoping to have at least 100 people participate. We still have a ways to go to reach that goal, but I’m confident we will. All it requires is signing up, sponsoring yourself and maybe asking a few additional folks to sponsor you as well. If you invite friends, their sponsorships will be matched by an anonymous donor. Participants will have the choice of walking on a paved trail or hiking on a dirt one for about an hour. That’s it. If you can’t hike or won’t be in town, please consider sponsoring someone else or making a donation.
I ‘m hoping we’ll remember the heart behind this event—it’s not about feeling guilty or fulfilling a duty, it’s about aligning ourselves with the heart of God. I think Jesus says it best:
“When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his glorious throne. All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.
“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’
“Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’
“The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’” -Matthew 25:31-40
To get more information or to register for the Hike, click on the link below.
To see a 3 minute video of the hike the Sintaro villagers make three times a day, click on the link below:
Click below to hear a song that will inspire you to bring water to those in need: :
I’ll look for you out on the trail October 5th!