Monday, August 2, 2010

Clean Water

Clean water. We take it for granted in our country. We challenged our kids a few weeks ago to go without water for a day. And if they wanted a drink, they could walk down to the river, get a bucket of water, boil it and then drink it. Yes, we have the luxury of living right next to a river...a river filled with carp, a river with lily pads and a bit of scum on the top. Going to the river entailed fighting through swarms of misquitos, stepping in mud and scaling a bit of a hill. The hill wasnt' so hard with the empty bucket, but they sure complained with their full bucket. By the time they got home, 1/2 the water was gone. Lesson learned as they angrily asked for some "real" water.

Millions of people die due to lack of clean water. Yet, in America, we spend millions to have water parks and pools in every community. Hey, I am totally guilty of taken for granted the clean water of our aquatic center...we swim there almost every day! And I am the first mom to warn my children, "Don't drink that water! You'll get sick!"

I can't remember if I wrote much about Georgie's first trip to the pool last summer. He was in shock. He asked me one word, "Crocodile?"

"No, sweetie. No crocodiles in there, just clean water to play in."

Play in water? The weight of that statement just hit me. We PLAY in something that is vital to human life while areas of the world find children literally dying for a drink of clean water. How selfish have we become?

I am not advocating we destroy all water parks and pools, but I am saying we should be paying more attention to this issue. There are wonderful, reputable organizations that focus on bringing clean water to villages where there is none. They build wells. Or they bring in water filtration systems. They teach people how to boil their water. Do some research and find one.

So, as I sit here with my washing machine churning away, my dishwasher cleaning the dirty dishes with hot water, my daughter singing in the shower, I am convicted. Water.

Forgive me Lord, for overlooking how much water I use so nonchalantly. Forgive me for not being aware daily of your children who don't have access to clean water. Forgive me for not teaching my children to be more aware of this issue.

I read someone's blog who said, "Next time you are at the pool and the break whistle blows, scoop up some pool water in a cup and offer that to your children to drink. And remember that drinking that pool water that we warn our children NOT to drink is better for them than most of the poverty stricken world's water is."

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