I seriously can’t believe it. I have had nothing but water to drink for 365 days! This crazy idea of mine started on November 1st of last year and here are a few actual journal entries that I made:
November 1st, 2008
I was sitting down at lunch with my family and decided to order a water for lunch. Robin looked at me rather strangely because I never order water when out to eat. I'm Diet Coke or Diet Dr Pepper all the way. So she asked why I was drinking water and for some reason I said this: "I heard on the radio last week that Terrell Owens drinks only water." Now Terrell Owens is an NFL receiver who played for the Dallas Cowboys at the time - otherwise known as TO. Here's my favorite TO quote: “I love me some me." Needless to say - TO has quite a bit of an ego. But for him to drink only water… how perplexing? Robin and I discussed whether or not we believed him and I went on to say that he made some declaration that the number one piece of advice he would give to all athletes is to drink only water. Then Robin went off on how good water is for me, yada yada yada... And it clicked... why don't I drink nothing but water for an entire year! I could lose weight. Get healthy. Write a book. Make money and buy a pool! What an idea!
November 1st, 2008
Later in the day I was talking to Robin about this again and I realized that I have never gone an entire day in my life where the only thing that I drank was water. How could I do 365?
November 2nd, 2008
So I'm thinking about this water thing and I think I should go for it. I'm thinking about recording everything I drink for the next two months to have a record of the old me and then beginning my journey on January 1st. And while I seriously do want to make some money on this thing - I don't really know why someone would want to read a book on me drinking only water for a year? Maybe I could get a sponsor like Aquafina or someone? I don't know. But I do know that it would be hard for me to actually do this unless I was passionate about it. And for me to be passionate about it - then it will have to connect to my faith in some way.
November 3rd, 2008
I decided to google the year of drinking water because I remember hearing about a book called the year of living biblically and figured that would be my gimmick. The good news was that I don't think anyone else has ever done this. But as I was thinking about this -it became pretty clear to me. Why don't I go on my water crusade to raise awareness not only for the benefits of water - but the need for the needy and poor throughout the world to have clean, safe drinking water. yes - that's it. Goodbye pool though - now that I have connected it to my faith - I'm going to need to give the proceeds to Living Water International or some other group to help provide water in areas of the world that need it. Maybe I'll raise money for The Last Well movement which is going to give the entire nation of Liberia free access to clean, safe drinking water in the next 7 years. The entire nation! How cool is that! I also realized today that I may have had a day in Eqypt in 2006 where all I drank was water. No - that's not true - I had at least one Fanta everyday I was there. Oh goodie.
November 3rd, 2008
Robin asked me tonight if I wanted to go pick up some Starbucks. My answer was immediate - no words… I just grabbed the car keys. No way can I go a year without Starbucks. I'm already doubting my decision and I really haven't begun yet. At Starbucks I weigh my options and land on a green tea latte - venti of course. I'm in line and wondering what will I do for a year of meetings at Starbucks? That's when I see Ethos Water in the check out line. I pick up a bottle and apparently this brand of water takes proceeds to third world areas that need clean water. Pretty cool - I just emailed myself the website to check out later: ethoswater.com
November 4th, 2008
So Francis Chan has this video clip from his book Crazy Love where he talks about cars in a used car lot. He goes through all these amazing cars in great detail and then arrives at a junkie one and exclaims that this is his car. He says something like: why would I spend $30,000 on a car when I can buy a cheap one and then spend that extra $30 grand on an orphanage. Then he says something shocking - that he does this for selfish reasons. He is more fulfilled knowing there are orphans taken care of then knowing he drives a really nice car. Yep. I can't take a dime from this thing. If any money is to be brought in, it will ALL go to help others. How ironic that I would want to make money on something like this to "waste" water in a pool that 4 people would enjoy and God would turn this into a quest for water for the multitudes to survive off of.
November 5th, 2008
Water stats: One dollar a day provides clean, safe drinking water for one person for one year. My $50,000 pool would provide water for 50,000 people for an entire year! Yikes! Shnikies!
November 5th, 2008
I shared the idea with Bill and then with Scott and got really positive feedback. They both agreed it would be next to impossible for me to do. Scott thinks I should try and get others to do it with me. I like the idea. I don't know if I start it and get going and then tell others. Or if I make a big splash before I do it and get a team to do it, etc... Then that puts a lot of pressure on me though!
November 6th, 2008
We are doing a dollar challenge at our RightNow Conference next weekend where we are going to give people one dollar bills and ask them to invest them in some way into the kingdom to see what God would do with those tine dollar bills. I have decided that I will use my dollar to buy my first bottle of water!
November 7th, 2008
I feel a strong sense to pray through this decision and check my motives. The original motive was honestly about money - and I could justify it by saying that I would get healthier and perhaps help others to get healthier. But I knew that wouldn’t flame a passion in me to actually go through with it. My motivation has to be spiritual. So now I feel this strong sense to pray through this idea and make sure that it would glorify God and not me. And this my friends is the story of my life! I face a daily struggle to either live for myself or live for Christ. There are two kingdoms in my life: the kingdom of this world and the kingdom of heaven. I often live for the kingdom of this world by making decisions that will pad my comfort or make me feel better. And make no mistake! I cannot live in both kingdoms at the same time. My hearts desire is to live in the kingdom of heaven. I can still enjoy this world, and I believe that God wants me to enjoy this world. But it’s all based on my worldview. My mindset. My grid in which I run my own thoughts and motives. So I am praying for God to reveal my motives. If they are pure - meaning they are about bringing Him glory and stamping out injustice (now that's kingdom of heaven talk!) then they will prevail!
November 8th, 2008
I flew to Baton Rouge today for the LSU and Alabama game. I had lots of fun and thought about coming next year and only drinking water. I drank a ton of water at the game. I think I could do this.
November 17th, 2008
I learned a ton at our RightNow Conference One of the lines that kept ringing in my ear was during Donald Millers talk on Friday night entitled, "Let Story Guide You." He was describing the formula of all good stories and he defined a character as "one who wants something and is willing to overcome conflict to get it." His over arching message was that God was calling each of us to live the best story we could live. And one measuring stick is to ask what would happen if we were no longer here? Who would miss us? What ministry would suffer? What people would suffer? He explained that all good stories have conflict and it made me think about this idea. And how I will encounter some extreme conflict. But... if I have enough passion (from Christ) to follow through - then it will make a great story!
November 30th, 2008
What the heck… I’m starting tomorrow. I won’t tell anyone I’m starting… That way if I can do it, then I’ll have a few weeks under my belt. If I can’t do it, I just won’t start up in January. I have been measuring every ounce of beverage intake for the last month to see what I’m up against. It doesn’t look pretty:
30% of what I drank was Diet Coke/Diet Dr Pepper - 976 ounces – good with any meal
19.5% of what I drank was Gatorade – 636 ounces – for that deep down body thirst
14% of what I drank was Diet Mountain Dew – 452 ounces - must have been a slow month
13% of what I drank was 7/11 Coffee – 432 ounces – used to begin each day at 7/11
6% of what I drank was Starbucks – 200 ounces – all types of drinks!
5.5% of what I drank was water – 188 ounces – it made the list!
5.5% of what I drank was fake beer – 180 ounces – someone had given me a 12 pack so I took it down
4.5% of what I drank was juice – 144 ounces – I think it was OJ when I was sick
1% of what I drank was milk – 36 ounces – I think I had dozen brownies with that
I don’t know how I’m going to do this… but I’m starting tomorrow… After I go to Starbucks one more time!
Fast forward one year and… I did it. The first three days sucked big time. I had huge headaches and was totally wanting some Starbucks. But I was absolutely amazed at how quickly those cravings went away and how easy the next 362 days were. Seriously – it was so easy to do! People never believe me when I tell them that… but it’s true!
I have much more to share about all the good that has come about. I did end up raising a bunch of money for The Last Well, but I’m not done yet. There is more to come… stay tuned!
One thing I need from you though… what should my first non-water drink in one year be? Comment, Tweet me, text me, email me, facebook me… Let me know!