Archive for May, 2013


May 24, 2013 3 comments

What’s the good word? This week found myself in Ethiopia. We came here to help finish the water well our congregation sponsored. It was great to meet the people of the village. so warm and friendly. Wednesday was a day of celebration, as the water well sponsored by Messiah Lutheran Church was to be finished. After waiting around for a little over an hour due to some difficulties, the well was finished. Words cannot describe the feeling of seeing the water come out of that well for the first time, and I really wasn’t the beneficiary of that water. I can’t imagine what was going through their minds as they saw that water. When the first bit came out there was clapping and yelling. Pure happiness. I myself, couldn’t help but tear up. As the pastor of Messiah Lutheran, I got to say a few words and I said a prayer over the well. Then it was the turn of the villagers. All gave thanks for the well and for those who donated for the well. My favorite moment and one of the most enlightening moments came when one man talked about the kids going to school. What would you think the link is between school and water? It is something you don’t think about probably at all. Today it was made real for me. As he spoke he talked about how the kids could now go to school. The parents were happy about this. Before the kids would spend too much of the day having to go get water for their households and couldn’t go to school. Now they could. We often think about the connection of water to life, but in this moment I was reminded that life is much bigger and wider than one could possibly imagine.

There was food and drink. The locals got out some of the local whiskey. It literally burned just to smell it! Others said words of thanksgiving and then we got to mingle with the villagers. Before we left, we gave the village children a soccer ball so that they could play with it. I presented it to one of the leaders, and got an equally enthusiastic response for that soccer ball. Something so simple. But wasn’t it Mother Teresa who once said, “None of us can do great acts, but we can all do small acts with great love.” That’s what kept ringing in my ear as I left. It was hard to leave. The waves from the people and the excitement on the kids who were already kicking that ball around was difficult to leave. But this is only a beginning in the relationship between Messiah and this village. I believe God has great things in store for us all!

We left there and then went to a local market. The market was busy with people. I instantly felt like a movie star. Everyone starring and kids coming up to us wanting to hold our hands. One is hesitant at first and then you are reminded of Jesus’ words, “Let the little children come to me.” Jesus goes on to say that one must have faith as one of these. I know what he means now. There they are and they don’t know us at all and yet grab our hands as if we were their brothers or their best friends. Faith I guess has a little audacity to it. I get that now.
And that’s the good word for today.


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