Thursday, January 21, 2010

The Gift of Water...and How My Four Year Old Made My Christmas
Do you need to hear something good? I do. It has been a heavy week. Lots of bad news for loved ones of my loved ones. Tragedy in Haiti that I can't comprehend. And then just the pressing of a hectic, wearying, unpredictable week. Maybe you don't need to hear something good, but I need to tell you something good. So lend an ear for my benefit, okay?

One Sunday morning before Christmas, a pastor at my church shared about an organization called Advent Conspiracy. I was really intrigued. Go look. I don't want to give it away for you. 

A couple of days later, I popped open my laptop and navigated to the Advent Conspiracy site. One of the partner organizations featured on AC was Living Water International. Living Water (in their words)
"exists to demonstrate the love of God by helping communities acquire desperately needed clean water, and to experience “living water”—the gospel of Jesus Christ—which alone satisfies the deepest thirst."

I was so drawn to the images on-screen and videos of precious people in impoverished nations, huddling around filthy, stagnant water holes to draw contaminated water for their families. The voices told of the staggering death rate from water-related diseases, of children missing school to hike for hours for water. As I watched, my ever-curious Olivia crawled onto my lap. Before long, even Annalie was at my side, the three of us watching in silence. Olivia asked me a few questions and I told her that I had been thinking that maybe we would send some money to these people as our annual "Christmas gift to Jesus." She thought that was a great idea.

Twenty or so minutes later I was in the shower and heard the familiar rattle of Olivia's piggy bank as she plunked it on the lid of the toilet. 

"Is this enough, Mom?" she said.

"Enough for what, honey?"
"Is this enough to buy the water?"


It had been a long month and I wasn't "feeling" Christmas. It had been hectic, we'd been sick and even some of our favorite Christmas traditions felt kind of flat. (Which reminds me of the dinner at which - while trying to lead our Advent devotion amid absolute kid-chaos - Jason finally reached his limit, slammed the bible shut and put kids in various time out locations around the house. LOL. MERRY Christmas!) So this opportunity to witness my four-year-old's heart awakening and responding to a great need of someone totally outside herself, well, it was the greatest grace gift this mama could have asked for.