Playa Salinitas, El Salvador

Coastlines fascinate me. My earliest memory of standing on a coastline was when my parents took my sister and me on vacation to the beach at Corpus Christi, Texas. I remember being a bit frightened by the waves and the vast expanse of water beyond the safety of the sandy shore. As I stared at the distant horizon, it felt as though I was standing at the edge of the world. And in a way, I was. I have had that same feeling every time I have visited one of the coastlines of the world — from white sand beaches in Florida to black sand beaches in Nicaragua to the murky waters lapping the coastline at Cox’s Bazar in the Bay of Bengal to many other coastlines around the world.

El Salvador’s Pacific Coast

As our flight approached El Salvador earlier today, I looked out my window to see the long stretch of coastline that defines this country’s unique shape. Later, I stood with friends looking out over the Pacific Ocean, having those same feelings I had when I was a kid filling my pail with sand on Corpus Christi beach. I am once again at the edge of the world. Before our evening meal and briefing, I stood for a moment and looked toward the distant horizon to the West, mesmerized by the rhythm of the waves. The map on my iPhone verified that I was indeed standing, once again, at the edge of the world.

My current location. | Playa Salinitas along El Salvador’s Pacific Coast

At our briefing this evening, we learned that we will be drilling a water well for the people who live in a village called Tonala. The folks who live in this tiny village of some forty homes are mostly people who work in the adjacent sugar cane fields. These people work hard to earn $8.00 per day. As bad as $8.00 per day sounds, it’s a little bit better pay than many folks in the area will ever see. The children of these workers attend school to the sixth grade and then drop out to help support their families, adding their wages to the meager daily earnings of their parents. As I listened to my friend Carlos, the country director for Agua Viva El Salvador, I was reminded of why God brought our team to the edge of the world along the Pacific Coast of El Salvador. It was so that we could connect with those who are living “on the edge” — barely able to eke out a living and in need of a source of clean water.

I am looking forward to a great week as we begin the process of drilling tomorrow. May our efforts help to improve the lives of those who live on the edge at the edge of the world along the Pacific coast of El Salvador.