Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Three Percent

It's after midnight and I've just woken up from a dream. Not a very powerful one, really, something about eating mushrooms and my mom returning an old childhood book on butterflies. So that's not it. It's the something that lies just under the surface of my conscious rolling around constantly all these deep truths about the world we live in. The reality that while I sleep in my pretty flanneled bed, people around the globe shiver on the streets. The reality that while I get up and stumble a few feet to my indoor bathroom and turn on the faucet and drink a small cup of water, this is impossible to a good percentage of the world. And then I remember.


And the actual number that it would take is lower. It really works out to be less. It's only 2.5%, but guessing that many Americans won't do it causes me to increase it a little. (My math skills are a little like my painting and cooking skills--I do A LOT of estimation. (Enter snickers from my brother.) So I'm really only guessing three percent.) Okay, back up, I'm in a half-awake state and no one knows what I'm talking about. Sorry. I'm typing quietly to not wake up my sleeping husband, but let me click a few more keystrokes to explain.

Americans spent $450 BILLION on Christmas. Yes, that's right. 450,000,000,000 hard earned dollars. And we're in a recovering recession!! And did you know that it would only take $10 billion to permanently fix the world's water crisis. That's right. Take just a minute here to let that sink in. {pause} If we took $10 billion of our $450 billion from one year of Christmas spending and gave it to a reputable water drilling organization(s), we could end the water crisis forever. {pause again} The 1 billion people who don't have access to it would require simply 2 1/2% of what we self-righteous "Christian" Americans spent on ourselves at Christmas. This makes my stomach turn. It keeps me awake at night! Since the number 2.5% would require every American household sharing their Christmas and I know that is unrealistic, I've bumped up the number to 3%. What if WE all gave a simple three percent of what we spend on our loved ones at Christmas to help stop the water crisis of our globe?

And then I wondered, does each American even keep receipts for what they spent at Christmas? Do we even realize what we are doing? It's only been 24 days since Christmas. Do we even remember the gifts we gave? Are they now a distant memory because we are so swallowed up in that project at work or the latest gossip? What if we had all given just 3% of our spending to an organization that could responsibly use it to help solve the global water crisis?

So I challenge you: this year in 2011, in another 11 months from now, I want you to give 3% of your Christmas spending to provide water to someone on our planet you'll never know. (Yes, I realize I'll probably have to remind you. I'm willing to do that.) I really don't care through which organization you do it, but I can certainly suggest a few that we use. Will you do it? Will you take this challenge? Will you step up to the plate in this way and allow me to fall back asleep this cold night in January? I've got four kids to be alert for in the morning you know! Seriously, this is true, but something deep within me compels me to write. (Just might be the Spirit of God!) I am literally compelled to motivate you to understand the real life-altering HELP you can be to these far off distant people.

Here's a verse I'm going to sign off with from Matthew 10:

"And if anyone gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones who is my disciple, truly I tell you, that person will certainly not lose their reward.”
Yeah, I know I already posted this picture from Charity:water...but it is perfect again and I want to go back to sleep! ;)


  1. I'm with you. We have supported bloodwatermission.com for a number of years. This year at the Passion Conferences we volunteer at, they're asking the students to support Living Water at www.water.cc
    At the January conference, college students from all over the world were asked for $75,000 for 15 clean wells in India. They ended up donating enough for 24 wells! (see http://268generation.com/blog/ for the other organizations these students contributed to)

    Anyway, I'm with ya on this one!

  2. i think people would be surprised at just how LITTLE 3% even is - i added up our spending for this last Christmas (and rounded up, just in case i forgot something :-)) and 3% of it looks soooo tiny! now i'm just trying to decide where i should send it - charity:water or sixty feet? and i had forgotten about bloodwatermission (they have specific well projects in uganda!) so many options, so bad at making decisions. :-) keep preachin' it, sister!

  3. Thank you both for your comments. I think it's just WONDERFUL that you are going to go BACK and give 3% Kerry! May God bless you for this act of faith! Michelle, thanks for the links and other places to give!! We so need one another! :)

    I do desperately hope that I'm not "preachy" I am just SO DEEPLY convicted by these things and I feel God wants to use me to shine a light on these issues...just 6 months ago I too was completely in the dark about all these people being without water! May we learn and DO SOMETHING!!!


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