I love the feeling of water flowing over me. It refreshes, soothes, calms, invigorates. Sometimes, I just want to stand under the flowing water for hours. Wishing I could just be wasteful. Wishing for just a few more minutes.
How fortunate I feel to have running water–warm and cold running water–when others have no running water or no clean water, period. I struggle to comprehend that so many people have no clean water. Over a billion people have inadequate access to clean water. Over 2.6 billion have inadequate sanitation.
And, the problem is getting worse, not better. With global warming, scientists expect it to get worse. Even today, the water crisis kills more people through disease than war kills people with guns. And, even though more people die each year from drinking dirty water, the water crisis rarely makes the headlines–unlike natural disasters such as hurricanes, earthquakes, or floods.
And, here I stand, with plenty of water to drink and the privilege of running water for showers, toilets, gardens, pools. I am grateful for this resource. But, I am struck by our nation’s–and the world’s–inability to mobilize to solve the crisis. I am struck that I have been silent about this crisis for so long.
We, as individuals, as Christians, as fellow human beings, need to act. Whether it is conserving our own water resources, volunteering to help drill and maintain wells, speaking out, donating our time, or donating money, we need to mobilize to help put this crisis to an end.
The statistics are staggering–not just the deaths from unclean water, but also the related issues, such as poverty, lack of education due to illness from dirty water, and much, much, more. So, join me, today, World Water Day 2010, and pledge to do something–anything–to move towards solving this crisis. Be the hands and feet of Christ or just the hands and feet of humanity. And, next time you feel the flow of fresh, clean water rush over you, remember again and pledge again.