No water = No life…a simple phrase voiced by a widow in Barek Aub, but it holds so much truth. In a place whose name means “broken water,” it’s not hard to put a visual to this truth.
Today was the day we got to visit Barek Aub.
I think for most of us, the love we feel for Afghanistan began in this dusty, remote, community full of survivors, whether you’ve ever stepped foot on the rocky paths, sat on the floor of a one-room mud house, or viewed it in photographs from the big screen in Lafayette, Barek Aub is where it started for most of us.
As we left the busy chaos of Kabul far behind, and pulled around the last final bend into Barek Aub, I was almost giddy with anticipation. Would it look different? Would we see faces we recognize? Would we feel hope? Yes, Yes and Yes. In some ways, I could answer “no” to the same questions, but my love for this place makes it hard to. Without doubt it has grown. And we most definitely saw many faces we have come to know and love, and the recognition was mutual. And with growth and development, there is always a sense of hope for what’s to come.
Our team of women spent the day seeing the evidence of past hopes fulfilled…from the 2 pump stations, to the schools, to the clinic. We got to visit with a room of women in a literacy class, learning how to read and write in Dari. We got to laugh and joke with a few widows who fed us wonderfully fresh naan and spoke of years of survival. And we got to see the how awesome the clinic is through the eyes of the nursing student on our team, like the importance of using new needles, and the family planning focus that has ensured healthier babies and healthier families.
As we have said over and over, Afghanistan is a place of contrasts. In the midst of seeing the cool things mentioned above, we also witnessed firsthand the harshness of this place as one of our teammates passed out (she recovered quickly and is fine now), and another teammate had to spend a portion of the afternoon in the car to cool off. The heat and remoteness (translate, long car drive), took its toll on us, and reminds us of how daily life out here is far from easy. In both cases though, it was water that refreshed
We began our day asking for God’s eyes and God’s heart as we went through the day. I know I speak for all of us when I say that we got to once again see that He loves this place. He loves these people. And there is hope. The hope we feel is really only found in water…living water. No water = no life. Living water = Life.
As we wind down from our day, playing mafia, and laughing until our sides hurt, I’m reminded of how powerful the relationships are between women. Which makes me all the more anxious to see how our creative God might use relationships to bring water to these women we have come to love. Kelly