It doesn't take a leap of faith to imagine water, poverty and violence intertwined like a terrifying, tragic, tempestuous Bermuda Triangle. It's the demonic trifecta where the global poor fall off the face of the map, enduring (but not sustaining) senseless and incomprehensible violence. But when I met Fadzai in Overspill, Zimbabwe, I knew it wasn't by chance, and that our friendship would become a microcosm of the Redemption of the world, the real heaven and earth we've all been looking forward to for the past 2,000 years—or maybe even since the beginning of time?
Fadzai is a Sunday school teacher at the community's local Apostolic Church of Zimbabwe. Her name means "the one who makes people happy," and if her smile is any indication, I think the moniker is prophetic...
Fadzai is also the new well caretaker, and lives in the house not 10 feet from the community's borehole drilled through the partnership of Living Water International and the Evangelical Fellowship of Zimbabwe.
Her pastor, Joshua Makuwerere, explained that Fadzai was the forerunner in ending their community's epidemic of domestic violence. See, when women used to have to walk kilometer after kilometer for contaminated water, they were forced to wake at 1:00 or 2:00 a.m.. Husbands got suspicious. Wives got beaten, and families fell apart.
So at Fadzai's leading, Overspill set up water-collection guidelines: the well is open from 6 a.m. to noon, closes for daily cleaning, and reopens from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Community members must form an orderly, peaceful, single-file queue...AND NO GOSSIPPING ALLOWED!
Fadzai and her well just go to show that when you attack violence at the root, water, peace and the living water of Jesus Christ all bubble up from within, like a holistic, holy geyser.
You'll be reading more from us this fall about our recent trip to Zimbabwe, but for now, take the first step to #endviolence and watch this three-minute video on "the locust effect" from International Justice Mission.