The Gift of “Living Water”

December 19, 2013 • South Sudan
Help Provide Freshwater Wells

God moved in the heart of a donor so an entire community in South Sudan would be blessed with clean water

South Sudan struggles through the peak of its annual dry season in April, with the earth floor cracking under the stress.

Yet Josephina Nyibol, a proud mother of seven, couldn’t let the unrelenting heat stop her. She left each morning at 4 so she could fetch water and return before the hot afternoon sun could bake the ground beneath her. Temperatures blaze at 110 degrees or more, with little relief even in the shade.

But getting up early was the least of Josephina’s concerns.

“I must leave my children home alone,” she said. “They only eat once a day because I am not home to cook for them.”

During her search for water, she also faced the dangers of wild animals and violence, not to mention the aches and pains that come with such backbreaking work.

“I was afraid of snakes, hyenas, and robbers,” she said. “I was always sore from walking, and I had to wear the leaves from trees on my feet.”

Clean water flowing

That all changed when Samaritan’s Purse constructed a borehole in her community in Northern Bahr el Ghazal. We also installed a hand pump and provided training on proper sanitation and hygiene practices. When the first drop of clean water was served from this simple well, 400 lives were transformed forever.

“With this well, I can now tend my garden and children,” Josephina said. “I even have money to buy things we need, like these new shoes.”

She proudly smiled as she looked down at the pair of dusty red sandals on him.

“I have such appreciation in my heart,” she said. “God brought me out of my problems and has promised me salvation.”

Filled with a purpose

Part of Josephina’s story actually starts in the fall of 2012, with a 20-year-old American girl named Jessica.

Jessica had just finished working for an international youth volunteer organization, and God led her back home to Pennsylvania to work for a season.

“He gave me a waitressing job,” she said. “And my prayer was that I would be used to bless others.”

The Lord rewarded Jessica for her hard work. After a year, her savings ballooned to $10,000. As the balance increased, so did her sense of security and financial stability. But she also began to feel restlessness in her spirit.

“God was challenging me with where my security was coming from,” Jessica said. “I was like, ‘What am I saving this money for?’ ‘And for what purpose?’”

Jessica gave a year's worth of her savings to help build a well.

Jessica gave a year’s worth of her savings to help build a well.

“Give and love”

Jessica was also being guided by what she was reading in the Bible—specifically in the Book of Matthew. “Jesus commands us to give and love, even through our finances, with passion that changes us and others around us.”

As Jessica prayed, she opened her heart to God’s leading. She even asked the Lord that if she gave, where the money should go.

“That’s when I remembered the Samaritan’s Purse gift catalog my family receives every year,” she said. “And God laid water relief on my heart.”

Poured out in Christ’s Name

She thought a couple hundred dollars would be enough to satisfy God’s prompting. But a few days later, as she read about the dire situation in South Sudan on our website, Jessica realized the $10,000 she had worked so hard to save was enough to help drill and assemble a freshwater well for a village in Northern Bahr el Ghazal.

An entire community needed clean water desperately, and Jessica had the resources to provide for hundreds of people. God was asking her to give back all the money she had earned to Him through this project.

“I was a little nervous at first, but God is good,” Jessica said. “I love that He answered my prayer by using my routine days of work to bless an entire village with water and open the door for them to hear about Jesus.”