Imagine your life without access to clean water… Imagine yourself having to wake up early in the morning and walk long distances to the nearest source of water… Imagine the hardships you would have to endure if your access to water was limited solely based on your beliefs…
These are some of the experiences many people in Malawi have to go through and, recently, our Christian brothers and sisters in Mpyupyu had their access to water restricted just because they were followers of Christ. For years, the closest source of water – a borehole – was on a private land that belonged to the local Mosque. Everyone was allowed to draw water and there was no distinction between believers and non-believers, at least as far as access to water was concerned.
This year, though, due to the recent growth in our church in Mpyupyu, the leaders of that Mosque decided to ban our church members from getting the much needed water. It was (and still is) an outright persecution against the believers.
That’t the bad news. The good news is that we serve a God that provides, the only true Creator. He sometimes allows hardships in our lives, only so that we can learn to lean on Him more. In His time, He will bless and provide – and that’s exactly what He did in Mpyupyu. When we had one of the teams over this year, someone from the team felt led to pray and ask – and God listened!
Hope Baptist Church in Mpyupyu has its own well now, with water being as close as 9 feet to the ground, all the way to almost 150 feet. Tons of water, so that no one should ever suffer.
More than that, if the local Mosque requires people to pay for the water (and asked our church member 10 times that fee), the well God gave us will be there FREE of charge, for anyone and anybody. God made the water and He provided the funds for us to get access to it, so we will, in turn, give it freely to the people in Mpyupyu. Not just to our church members, but to the entire village. Surely we would be entitled to ask a certain small amount so that we can cover the maintenance expenses, but times are very tough for these people, and many of them go through hunger on a regular basis. How can we ask money from them to pay for the water? Why should we further restrict the access for the poorest of the poor, when they already go through hard times?
People in Malawi are some of the poorest people in the world and often times the material needs can not be ignored. At the same time, as missionaries, we know that their spiritual needs are of the utmost importance, so we always try to keep our priorities right. Jesus Himself is our example; He fed the poor, healed the sick but always taught and preached the message of the Kingdom.
Brothers and Sisters, if you have access to running water today, you are blessed. I know we can take our fancy faucets for granted, but they truly are undeserved blessings. So many people around the world can only dream of what you and I have, so let’s take a moment and thank the Lord for that! Once you do that, please enjoy the following pictures and be glad in the Lord! He is still at work today!