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By Karlee Mikkelson

In June of 2016, I was introduced to the amazing work that Healing Waters does. I was being offered a freelance gig to film a project incredibly close to the hearts of the individuals behind Healing Waters. I was being offered my actual dream job just two weeks after graduating college. As much as I’ve attempted to wrap my mind around how this opportunity landed in my lap, the only reasonable explanation is God. (God, and fantastic women like Jenna Kutcher and Kayla Fruchtman.)

There we sat, under a minuscule tin roof in a sea of dry Guatemalan hills. Thunder rolled so loudly amongst the peaks and valleys that we could hear the storm approaching over the sound of the children’s boisterous laughter. A mix of kids from different families played soccer so loyally with each other you’d assume they were siblings. They played on the concrete slab that jutted out from underneath our little tin roof. The youngest of the children napped in the corner, sleeping so deeply he was blissfully unaware of the weather upon us. The sky opened and the surrounding land was blanketed in sheets of forceful showers. In the driest corridor of Central and South America, the seldom rainfall was falling powerfully—much like the storm that was stirring within my own heart. I couldn’t quite wrap my mind around what it was I was feeling until I was introduced to the concept that explained it perfectly. Thin Spaces.

Originating from Celtic traditions, Thin Spaces gives meaning to the moments in life where heaven in no longer so far from you. The present moment obtains so much of God’s goodness that the space between Him and his vast Earth becomes wildly thin. 36 hours prior to this moment, I was in disbelief that I was prepared for the job Healing Waters was allowing me to do. Yet there, under than tin roof, God was pulling heaven so closely to Earth I am assuming if I reached up I could already have one hand on the gates.

Armina and Luis, the couple behind the entire story I was there to film, were making Kayla and I some coffee over a simple stove. We spoke together with the help of my broken Spanish and the even greater help of their fantastic patience. The youngest child was still sleeping in the corner, now covered lovingly with a towel to keep him warm from the moist air. Two of the little girls that were previously attempting to beat their metaphorical brothers in a heated soccer game, were now endearingly brushing through each other’s drenched hair. I was no longer given the job to film a story of strangers in a dry corridor of Guatemala. I was filming friends. I was filming my brothers and sisters in Christ. God had brought me here to this plastic chair and concrete slab filled with so much of His goodness that heaven was upon us. I choked down the lump in my throat that meant I was about to embarrass myself with more tears than rain drops that had just fallen.

To this day I am still unsure if filming in Guatemala was God’s main priority in my presence there. I believe God needed me to sip coffee, speak broken Spanish, and listen to endless laughter filled soccer games. God was allowing me to put down my camera and fall in love with the amazing people Healing Waters is working endlessly to help every single day. These individuals are no different than me, and no less capable than me. They are friends, and sisters, and fathers that have been living without clean water to brew their coffee with or to brush their teeth with. God gave me the moments within a thin space to recognize not only just how similar we all are, but just how much need there is to fill. Healing Waters International had not only changed the lives of the thirteen people that shared that tin roof with me one afternoon in 2016, but have completely altered the lives of thousands of other families around the world who had prayed to reach the end of their storm—the storm of living without clean water.

We’re on a mission to end the global water crisis. We build holistic clean water solutions and spread God’s love in at-risk communities around the world, empowering people not just to survive, but to thrive – physically, socially and spiritually.

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