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Lessons in Perseverance, Trust, and Importing Water Drilling Rigs

In the Southern Nations, Nationalities and Peoples’ Region (SNNRP) of Ethiopia, more than 18 million people face some of the highest water scarcity and water-borne disease rates in the world. As we think about the vulnerable people in this region, we are especially blessed to share some good news you helped make a reality. After months of prayer and patience, a water drilling rig is finally being delivered to the Lifewater Ethiopia team this month!

Help other vulnerable people in Ethiopia gain access to safe water.

Water Drilling Rig Imported to Ethiopia

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The SIMCO 2800 water drilling rig is en route to Awassa, Ethiopia.

For several months in 2017, we worked to deploy a SIMCO 2800 water drilling rig – the first of its kind in Lifewater history – that will help vulnerable people in Ethiopia gain access to safe water. The water drilling rig is custom modified to be light enough to pull with a small truck, so it can get to remote places most rigs won’t go.

“In November, we received formal approval from the federal government of Ethiopia to import the drill rig,” says Lifewater President and CEO, Justin Narducci. “We have literally been praying every day for the last four months for this to happen, and I know many of you have prayed with us. Thank you! Only God could make this happen.”

The container with the rig arrived in Djibouti at the end of January and is currently en route to Awassa, where the drilling team will begin training.

A Reflection on Prayer, Patience, and Perseverance

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Lifewater Ethiopia Country Director, Zerihun Hailu (center) in the field

As we celebrate, we also reflect on the long journey to get here. Lifewater Ethiopia Country Director, Zerihun Hailu is deeply familiar with the challenges of working internationally. Here are his reflections on the long process of getting a drill rig approved by the Ethiopian government:

“I have had a number of sleepless nights since the third week of June. We live in the modern era but in different worlds. In the West, almost everything is made immediately available, but in Africa we can spend hours, weeks, months, or years working toward something, and still may fail to accomplish it. On this long, tiresome journey to getting the drill rig approved, why were you so patient? You could have stopped your efforts and moved on to something else with quicker results.

For us, this process was a lesson. We need to demolish certain walls to reach the unreached people of God. Where do we get the energy required to penetrate such walls? I think through prayer and patience! As the saying goes, patience is a virtue and good things come to those who wait. By being faithful, we are filled by the Lord’s Holy Spirit and gain the mighty power within and around us to break any worldly walls.

Romans 12:12 says, ‘Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer’. This verse teaches us how we should behave, live, and serve. When we love the people we serve, we persevere and pray constantly. When we persevere and pray constantly, God does his work and we rejoice. Those who benefit from our ministry will rejoice, too. The people in West Arsi and Bensa shall drink from safe as well as holy waters! God is great! Thank you for your extreme patience. Thank you for loving the poor and obeying God’s commandment in deed.”

We are grateful beyond measure that the prayers for this water drill rig have been answered. Thank you for being joyful in hope, and faithful in prayer. Thank you for loving those we serve and persevering with us. Thank you for rejoicing with us as vulnerable people in Ethiopia gain access to safe water, health, and hope!