Thanks for listening!
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Did you know that the Macy’s fireworks display was estimated to have cost over 5 million dollars?
And here are some figures from 2 other major cities from an article 2 years ago. No doubt the costs
have risen since then.
Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter says the festival's expenses have been cut from roughly $3
million to about $2.1 million now, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer
Boston spares no expense on its annual fireworks show. David Mugar, who organizes the
event, says the 37th annual July 4 shindig will cost $2.5 million. Included in that price tag, will be
performances by the Boston Pops and country crooner Toby Keith. "[It's] a colorful way to see your
money go up in smoke," jokes Mugar.
Average size towns are estimated to put on shows ranging from $10- 20,000 annually. Did you
know that a well for an entire village costs $10,000 and can change the lives of 1,500 to 3,000
people and the gift of a well can last up to 20-30 years. Here are some more facts from the Hope 4
Kids International website.
75% of all deaths in remote villages is caused by a lack of clean drinking water. 300 million people
in Africa almost half of the total population- do not have access to clean, safe drinking water. Poor
water quality continues to pose a major threat to human health. A significant amount of disease
could be prevented, especially in developing countries, through better availability of a safe water
supply. The effects of these conditions are mostly concentrated on children who are unable to fight
off these diseases.
These girls walk 5k every day, just for clean water (source)
Dysentery, a diarrheal disease caused by polluted water, alone is responsible for the deaths of
1.8 million people every year and killing 5,000 children every day. This specific condition causes
dehydration which then becomes the killer. Other water-related diseases are malaria, measles,
cholera, typhoid fever, and bilharzia. All preventable!
A new well in Malawi (source)
water to EVERY single person in the WORLD that does not have it. I can’t even really do the math
on how many lives that will save. May be you can’t wrap your brain around that number. Once
we get into the billions, it can be a little difficult to grasp. For some added perspective: in 2011, we
spent $46 billion just on black Friday. Just in this country. In 1 day, we spent more than double what
is needed to give water to the world. Let that sink in for a minute.
So, this is not really about fireworks. Fireworks are breathtaking, bring unity to a nation normally
divided, bring families together to celebrate, instill patriotism and gratitude for our troops and our
freedoms. They just happen to be a timely and costly example of many of our country’s priorities
and a good way to show contrast and bring perspective to some high dollar expenditures. And
this isn’t just about awareness for the significance of clean water. I could make the same point
that instead of fireworks, we could feed our nation’s homeless for weeks or any number of critical
legitimate needs. It’s about doing Kingdom work. It’s about the basics of what this country was
founded on – equality, sharing, freedom, cooperative efforts. We have a responsibility to love our
neighbors, to think of others more than ourselves and to share all that we have been blessed with.
Believe me, I am speaking to myself just as much as to any of you.
The bottom line is that we need to stop just doing what everyone else is doing or expects us to do
and ask the Lord what he would like us to do with the resources he has given us. The blessings
and abundance he has poured out on us is truly enough to go around, but there is very little sharing
going on in our world at large. What does this mean for you? Only you and the Lord can answer
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Want to get involved? Here are some great options:
Like Amy said, this isn't just about water. There are hundreds of ways you can get involved, both internationally and locally. The challenge is to do it! Whatever you feel God is putting on your heart...do it!