USA (MNN) — The commercialism and greed of the shopping
season surrounding the holidays have provoked a unique response in
believers. More and more Christians are
joining the "Advent Conspiracy" to be a part of the solution.
Two years ago, a group of pastors
identified consumerism as the biggest threat to the American church. Ironically, it creates the largest
distraction at a time when people should be focused on Jesus Christ.
The point of the Advent
Conspiracy is to help align with Christ, worshipping Him in a holistic way. Believers
decided to change their spending habits at Christmas, avoid the commercialism,
and give relationally — the way Christ modeled for us through His gift of Himself.
The pastors took the money they saved and
gave it to Living Water International so that desperate communities could have
the gift of clean water.
Jerry Wiles says, "It was a partnership with Living Water
International. In 2006, with four
churches, it was around $300,000 they raised. They more than doubled it the
next year, and there was more than a thousand churches involved last year. It has really grown, and I think that the
momentum is going to continue to build."
Last year, those thousand
churches banded together and gave three million dollars to the neediest people across
the globe. Money given by advent conspirators is still funding wells in
Liberia, Peru, India, Sudan, and Sierra Leone.
Wiles observes that "one
dollar provides clean water for one person for one year. That's a pretty good
return on your investment when you consider the desperate need and the fact that clean
water is the most basic physical need. That opens the door for a demonstration of
the love of Christ and the living water of the Gospel."
Here's how the Advent Conspiracy
is being used this year. 30 deep wells are in process of being
drilled in Mount Barklay, Liberia, ending the entire region's water problem. An
estimated 25,000 people in the immediate area will be served.
Before the new wells,
communities would utilize creeks, mudholes, swamps and the river for drinking
water. Living Water is working closely with community development organizations, and clean water has proven to be a mighty access
into the heart of each village.
immediately increased once the well was drilled at the school. Instead of kids
bringing their dirty water to school, they are currently bringing empty jerry
cans to school with them — so they can bring clean water back home. Some of the chiefs are in a state of wonder — it seems to them that all
of heaven has opened up for their villages in the last few months.
Living Water is also working
in partnership with AC to rehabilitate/repair 350 broken/open-top wells in
Liberia. On average, one repaired hand-pump or well rehab restores water to
approximately 1,000 people.
In Peru, 10 new wells are in progress
in Peru. LWI Peru is reaching native tribes along the Amazon River –
communities that can only be reached by boat, days along the river. Local
pastors are working alongside drilling crews in every community.
Living Water India, in partnership with a church
from AC, has drilled two wells in India.
In Southern Sudan, Living Water is in-process of
25 well repairs/rehabs. Anticipated
funding will be used to repair wells in Haiti and Sierra Leone. Click here if you want details on the Advent