Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Giving Life

Leslie and I wanted to let you know about a project we are going to be working on for the next year. God had been preparing our hearts for several weeks with questions and thoughts about the blessings and possessions we have and how we use them for His glory. On October 31 a group visited our church that made us aware of the urgent, deadly problem caused by the lack of clean water across the globe and particularly in Africa. Please follow the link below and click on “Watch Video” on the bottom right to see the video we saw:

It truly stirred our hearts to consider that millions of children do not have access to clean water. To briefly summarize, these children spend much of their day walking to a water source, which is usually contaminated, to get water to bring back home. This leaves little or no time to attend school. What water they do have is contaminated and used to cook, drink, and bathe in; literally covering their entire bodies from the inside and out. This leaves these children chronically sick and unable to attend school. Those children that are able to survive their childhood often grow up uneducated due to attending school so sporadically, which leaves them unable to get jobs, which leaves them in poverty. Water truly is the key to breaking their cycle of poverty, sickness, and death.

Of course water only addresses their earthly needs. The greater need for most of these children and people groups is that they do not know Jesus Christ. While the thousands of people that die every day from lack of clean water is a tragedy, the fact that they are dying apart from Christ is an even greater tragedy.

It was clear that God desired us to be involved. There were some monthly sponsorship options, but we felt that was not enough. So Leslie and I, along with the Carson and Renfroe families that we attend church with, have decided to do something about it. Over the next year we are going to sacrifice our finances, time, and efforts to raise money to drill a well in Sudan. This well will provide clean, safe drinking water for approximately 1,000 people per day for the next twenty years for a village in Sudan. The cost is $5,000. We have partnered with a group called Never Thirst Water, primarily because they emphasize the spreading of the Gospel along with bringing water that is crucially needed to these people. We have a page that is set aside specifically for out project at www.neverthirstwater.org/giving-life. If you choose, you can go there and make a donation to help this cause. Leslie started this blog where you can follow the progress.

Why are we telling you about this? For Leslie and I, we are committing a monthly amount to this cause and looking for opportunities each month to earn some extra money to give towards this cause. If you would like to join us in that, wonderful. Maybe you feel like making a one time donation, which would be great as well. The only thing we ask is that you be in prayer for this village in Africa that will be impacted by these efforts over the next year, and that God would prepare their hearts through the Holy Spirit that when the time comes that the Gospel message is shared with them that they would come to know our Lord and Savior. But the biggest reason we are telling you this is because we want God to receive glory from this project. We want you to know what God is doing in our hearts and we look forward to the day in one, two, or three years when we can tell you that a village in Africa has clean water and people there know Christ. We hope that you will rejoice along with us when that day comes. If you will give financially, wonderful. If you will pray for this project, great. If you do not become involved at all, that is fine too. But we feel compelled to share this project with you, so that He will be honored through this project over the next few years.

If you have any questions please e-mail us at derek.irons@gmail.com or leslie.irons@yahoo.com.

Derek and Leslie