When my mother died of complications from Alzheimer’s three years ago, I stared rather numbly at the dying flowers lying over the dusty gravesite. I wanted a dynamic remembrance of this vibrant woman instead of a hard, granite tombstone. My mom, Betty, was a fast-moving, multi-tasking mother of five and grandmother of ten who adored children, taught Bible class for years, and never stopped helping people in myriad ways. I felt she needed to be honored in a more zestful way.
Our friends and ANM ministry partners in Kenya, Timothy and Yvonne Kinyua, are at the helm of Cornerstone Evangelistic Ministry. Church planting, discipling, training pastors, and self-help projects are a few of the reasons their lives are filled to the brim with “being about their Father’s business.”
One way they help rural villages in Kenya is digging wells. Because of these wells, desperately needed, life-giving, clean water is now available. At the same time, it gives the pastors in these native villages a gathering place in which to introduce the topic of Jesus as the Living Water.
For a little less than $1,800, some of my friends and family were able to make this happen in the village of Atan. The cost varies slightly from place to place because the wells are hand dug by locals, and Timothy is at the mercy of the equipment supplier pricing as well. (You can give to a well project here.)
We also wanted to have a plaque made, not only to honor Mom, but so these villagers could see that someone across the ocean cared enough about them to give them fresh water.
I want to give others this idea to consider doing in memory of their loved ones. It is truly a gift that keeps giving.
When I see these colorful photos of the villagers basking in the wonder of sanitary, free-flowing water, I think of my mom…not lying in her hospice bed with dementia at the end of her life, but skipping along with joy holding the hand of a little Kenyan boy whose life she just transformed.
But when this perishable will have put on the imperishable, and this mortal will have put on immortality, then will come about the saying that is written, “Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?” The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law; but thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your toil is not in vain in the Lord.
I Corinthians 15:54–58