After the success of our early fundraising efforts and the Clovis Water Walk, Angie and I decided to take a temporary break from active fundraising projects. This was partly due to the holidays and my graduation, but we also wanted to take time to reflect on our successes and pray about direction for the future of h2o. During this time, the first well was installed. (Praise the Lord that Zach, Edwin and Floyd were there to see this first hand and participate!) Also, we have been inspired with direction for the coming year of fundraising. As of right now, we are planning 3 fundraising events:
- March to Surrender (no actual marching is required, see below)
- Rio Rancho Water Walk this spring (details coming soon)
- Clovis Water Walk in the fall
The “March to Surrender” is a 31 day fast. The concept is simple …
- Give up all soft drinks, coffees, teas, juices, lattes, frappes, and other beverages for the entire month of March and drink only water.
- Give up one daily beverage or other guilty pleasure [ex. morning trip to Starbucks, Dunkin Donuts, late night snack] for the entire month of March.
- Pledge the money you would have spent to h2o. Let us know what you choose to do so that we may pray along with you. Go to the "March to Surrender" tab above to make your pledge.
- At the end of the month, donate* your savings to our next well.
Americans spend nearly $30 billion per year on coffee (includes lattes, frappes, etc.) and soft drinks and $388 billion on alcohol. That’s almost $420 billion on drinks that are generally considered to be bad for us. To put it in different terms, we spend about $112/person/month on coffee, soft drinks and alcohol. Certainly, that amount varies a lot among individuals. However, I know that Angie and I spend about $60/month just for soft drinks at Sonic and McDonalds (don’t judge me). If we can get 120 people to participate in this event by pledging $80 for the month, we will be able to fully fund our second well.
Just like with the Water Walk and the Parents’ Night Out events, this experience is about more than money. It is a time to surrender our selfish desires of the flesh, to let go of those things that ensnare us. Isaiah 58:6-7 captures the essence of the spiritual component of this fast …
6 Isn’t the fast I choose: To break the chains of wickedness, to untie the ropes of the yoke, to set the oppressed free, and to tear off every yoke? 7 Is it not to share your bread with the hungry, to bring the poor and homeless into your house, to clothe the naked when you see him, and not to ignore your own flesh and blood?
By surrendering our fleshly cravings to God, we can break the chains of wickedness that entangle us. We can free ourselves to share our money to provide for those in need.
Isaiah 58:1-5 highlights how the Israelites missed this point. They fasted and then complained to God about their prayers not being answered. God responded to them that their fast was meaningless because they continued to indulge in their other selfish cravings rather than devoting themselves to prayer. In other words, they simply replaced the sacrificed item by indulging themselves in some other craving. Also, they made their fasting obvious for all to see so that they would be noticed for their piety. It is not enough to simply look the part. They made a mockery of God by continuing in their wicked ways.
For us, we should use this as an opportunity express genuine sorrow for the sin of our gluttonous, self-indulgent lifestyles. When the cravings hit for that morning coffee or afternoon soda, choose a glass of water from the tap instead. Then, thank the Lord for providing us with clean, accessible water. Pray for those who do not have that luxury. Pray for the success of our ministry in providing that to them, specifically for the success of the Rio Rancho Water Walk. And finally, let us repent of our self-indulgent lifestyle.
In verses 8-12 of Isaiah 58, God promises us results from fasting the right way. Verse 11 stands out to me because God promises we will be like a watered garden and like a spring whose waters never run dry.
Please join with us in this fast. Go to http://hydration2others.blogspot.com/p/donate.html to send us your gift. I pray that it will be a powerful experience to you.
It wouldn’t feel complete without a song …
(I dislike the ads from the VEVO videos, but since they are official videos the links are likely to stay reliable. So, I’m sorry if you get a beer ad or something weird at the beginning of this video.)