Becca Rusinko

by | Mar 6, 2024 | Thoughts | Reflections

What was the initial reason that prompted you to start supporting UWP? How did our organization, our work, our emphasis resonate with how you decide to steward your resources?

My initial, casual support of UWP was, admittedly, mainly because I knew James. Part of why I ramped up my giving was because I learned that not all charities could be trusted, which isn’t exactly a feel-good story… but it gets better.

How have you been challenged or how have you changed since supporting UWP financially?

I grew up in church, but didn’t actually learn much about Jesus until I was in my 30’s. As I dug into the gospel accounts, much of what I learned about Immanuel, God with us, surprised me. I discovered Jesus’ ministry to be gritty, and involved. Most of His miracles were hands-on. He was on the sea, He calmed. He touched the bread, He multiplied. When a woman touched his cloak and received healing, He insisted on meeting her face to face. I mean, in one account he even used his spit to heal someone. If that’s not gritty and hands-on, I don’t know what is.

I’ve learned that when we solve the water problem, we impact more than just the water directive. Fewer people get sick, and those who do can recover more quickly. Children are able to stay in school. Education and health lead to better economic outcomes, which means more access to food, and less of a chance of winding up in prison. And it meets one of the most critical needs of refugees.

Discipleship is not a one-time thing for anyone. There’s a reason Jesus emphasized these very tangible, life-affirming actions. Across His teachings, He consistently invites us into relationship with Him and relationship with others.

Each layer of my involvement with UWP has been a part of my spiritual formation through giving me different ways to connect with God and others. By sponsoring specific communities, I was able to see the faces and hear the stories of the communities impacted. They knew someone cared because people on both sides of the ocean between us showed up, in love, in tangible, practical ways.

Monthly giving keeps me connected to the real-life, this-very-day, worldwide body of Christ. Here’s the thing: We already are connected, whether we remember it or not. But there’s something powerful that happens when we keep this connection healthy and active. I believe this ongoing obedience to one of the core teachings of Christ is not just evidence of a transformed heart, but a method of ongoing transformation for me as much as any community impacted.

And of course going to Uganda took the tangible nature to a whole new level. It blew the lid off. If the walk of faith is about relationship with God and others, it dialed all of it up to level 10. We’re so used to being able to control what we take in. We can change the channel or scroll past. But when you take that walk for water, alongside the kids who do it every day, the space between heaven and earth feels thinner. It’s one thing to pray “thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on Earth as it is in heaven.” It’s another to recognize that, most often, He does that through our willing hands and hearts.

Join The TIDE

Send an email to James Harrington (Founder/CEO, Ugandan Water Project) with the subject “I’m in” to discuss joining The Tide.