Why are You Doing the Hard Thing?

33 days from today is the Half-Marathon.  13.1 miles.  It’s hard thing.  But everyone reading this is doing a hard thing.  Or a lot of hard things.

This was the text I sent to Katy and Maggie the other day after I ran.  It is similar to many other texts I’ve sent over the past six months.


I questioned myself once again, “WHY the heck am I doing this?”

Just like you may ask yourself,

“Why did I commit to lead this small group?

Why do I keep tutoring this under-resourced kid who doesn’t seem to care?

Why should I stay in this hard marriage?

Why did I move here?

Why am I serving on this board?

Why did I start this business?…”

“Why did I choose to do this hard thing?”

It’s an important question to ask ourselves.  And the answer for me is summed up in my friendship with a little girl and an old woman.

 Loveness lives in Zambia.  In the district of Moyo – one of the most impoverished areas of the country.


This is Loveness the day after her third birthday when we gave her the dress she’s wearing and the jacket she would not take off even though it was hot as heck in the crowded mud church where she toddled in and climbed up on John’s lap.

And this is Ruthie who lives another area of Zambia where World Vision has already been at work.

IMG_4719-3This picture was taken the day I stood beside her as World Vision drilled for water and it gushed, clear and clean and sparkling from the earth.  It had been there all along, but for her whole life, Ruthie walked miles and dragged dirty water, the job consuming most of each day, preventing her from the “luxury” of time to attend school.

The women danced and Ruthie just kept marveling “Look what God has done.  God  has answered us.  It’s like a dream”.  What I heard underneath was what Hagar said when God met her in the wilderness, “He is the one who sees me.” (Genesis 16:13)


Most of us took a shower this morning, brushed our teeth, had a cup of coffee…And didn’t think twice about the luxury of clean water.  But for many people they have to think about it all the time.

More than 6,000 children under age 5 die each day from diseases spread by unsafe water or lack of basic sanitation and hygiene. 

When my friend Renee learned about this she decided she wanted to experience the harsh reality for herself.  She decided to go a day without turning on the water in her house – no shower, no teeth brushing, no coffee.  She took a bucket with her to a lake two miles away to try to schlep home a few gallons, much of which sloshed out, leaving her exhausted and with only about a gallon by the time she reached home.

Now imagine this is you, but the gallon you got home with is filthy with deadly bacteria and parasites that are literally killing you.  This is the reality for about 1.2 Billion people in our world today.  

Why am I doing my hard thing?  I want the same gift that Ruthie received late, for Loveness while she’s still young and full of dreams.  I want her and so many other kids to know God sees them.  I want them to have water.  To have life.  That’s why I’m running the half-marathon with Team World Vision.

What does clean water cost?  $50 a person.

So $5,000 would provide water for 100 people.  Right now we’re halfway there!  If you would like to help, click here.

I know YOU are doing many hard things too.  What are they and what keeps you going?

2 thoughts on “Why are You Doing the Hard Thing?

  1. May you be blessed for your self-discipline, obedience, painful and time-consuming training, and your commitment to the cause, Laura. Not only is our King smiling and cheering you on, He’s bringing life-giving water to Zambia! May His and Loveness’s faces cause you to rise up on eagles wings, run and not be weary. The worst is behind you! YOU CAN DO THIS!!!


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