More to Life
It's not every day that I give an honest answer to the usual "How do you do?" of my polite society. But this was a day when at any time the straw which broke the camel's back might have appeared. I replied, "Not too well. I feel as though I am going through the motions of life. Everything seems pointless!"
"Maybe, love is what's missing," he said. These first five words totalled me. This was not a romantic advancement or a hint that I needed to commence my dating life. Popular culture has taught us that we need to get a degree, a good job, and perchance a husband and one or two children. Yet after the novelty of these additions has worn off, our soul reminds us - "There is more to life than this."
My friend helped me to realise that I can spend so much time thinking about ME that I forget that there are a lot of other MEs in the world that are in need. We all have been given gifts from God, and when we share our individual gifts or blessings--no one will ever be in need! (Acts chapter 2 verse 45)
Over the last week many of my countrymen suffered grievously from water shortage. The Water Authority cut off water in some areas to avoid water contamination during the passing of Tropical Storm Matthew. Still, there have been many others who have had water woes since the start of the year.
Barbados has been categorised as a water scarce country, a verdict that many are yet to comprehend since water flows regularly from their taps. Some "environmentalists" contend that we do not conserve our water supply: water is lost as a result of faulty piping and domestic abuse. Yet, our response as a nation has been slow and minimal as only a fraction of the population has been affected.
But water should be a national and personal priority: while man does not to live by bread alone, he needs water to survive. If we really wanted to assess the value of water it might be better to start with a list of the effects of not having water: decrease in production and increase of diseases and illnesses; dehydration and ultimately death. As the saying goes, "You don't know what you've got until it is gone!"
We Need Water
Water sustains and purifies, water is life. Scientists confer that human body is made up of 60-70% of water and as such nutritionists advise that we drink adequate water throughout the day to replenish and cleanse our system.
The significance of water is also portrayed in the Bible. John the evangelist noted that Jesus met a woman at a well (Chapter 4). So great was the need for water that the women journeyed daily to fetch water to cook and clean. Yet this one woman had a deeper need for water: could it be that after five husbands she still felt unloved? Meeting Jesus that day brought an end to her water woes: in that unexpected moment she met the lover of her soul and the one who gave her a new start in life.
It has become easier to assess what another person lacks in life and harder to share with them what they need and what we are able to provide. We live in a world of uneven numbers: world systems teach us that we should have more than the other. This is not the world God created, but what we have made it. It is time that we too accept his living water which is able to wash away stubborn and selfish attitudes.
For the Love our Fellow Man
Scrolling through my Facebook feeds, there were many negative comments about the Water Authority's failure to supply water to disadvantaged residents. Yet, one caller to radio station Life 97.5 fm. argued that this was not just a job for the state. She commented: "Why don't the Christians use this as an opportunity to share their water? They could buy bottles of water and host persons in need of a bath, etc."
United Caribbean Trust is one a Christian organisation which rallies individuals and churches to show compassion to the disadvantaged across the Caribbean. In 2010, they responded to a cholera outbreak in Haiti. During this crisis, UTC raised support from the public towards the purchase of Sawyer Point One filters. These filters helped to abate further cases of cholera spreading across the country.
Following the recent effects of Hurricane Matthew, UTC continues to provide safe drinking water for the people of Haiti.
While organisations have been established to address specific needs in our society; sometimes it is to the detriment of individuals who make up the society. The greatest welfare agents in the world are the –I's. One man, woman, or child can make a difference. In times like these sharing water is a lot like love.
Everyone needs water, everyone needs love. You might not feel loved at this moment, but who is that one person that could benefit from your love?
Janine Williams is a theology student, passionate about the word of God which is powerful to transform the lives of individuals and nations.
Janine Williams' previous articles may be viewed at http://www.pressserviceinternational.org/janine-williams.html