Saturday, January 10, 2009


Everyday, over 1 billion people must walk long distances to obtain the water they need. Many young girls must forgo their education in order to carry water to their home.
In rural Africa, most women spend 1/4 of their day collecting water due to the long distances they must travel to obtain it.

A couple of months ago, I heard a story of a man who was on a plane next to a woman from Africa. She said to him "if you actually saw a person with AIDS as your brother or sister in Christ, this disease would all but be eradicated." If my biological sister were suffering from a disease, I would sacrifice just about anything to help her. If my biological brother were homeless, of course I would insist that he live with me. If my other biological sister didn't have access to clean water, I would do whatever needed to be done so that she could have it.

I set up barriers between myself and others as a way and reason to not have to help. To not have to be inconvenienced. To not have to suffer.
"God has combined the members of the body . . . so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. If one part suffers, every part suffers with it . . ." (1 Corinthians 12:24-26)

If one part suffers, the other parts take notice. If people in Central America are hurting, people in North America should notice. If brothers and sisters in Africa are in pain, the rest of the body - the rest of the world should also feel that pain. And when we notice, when we feel the pain, we have to do something. If one part is suffering, we suffer with it. We should be just as concerned about our neighbor down the block as we are with our neighbor in Eastern Europe, in South America, etc.

As I do a very small thing: re-using and conserving water (see previous post), I remember those that don't have my luxury. As I remember, I feel. And as I feel, I am moved to action. To do more on behalf of the suffering.

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