Written and Shared by: Chaplain Chris Belfield
Last week I described how an unexpected mechanical challenge with the furnace resulted in making a new friend with the repair contractor. Now, in the cold of winter is not the time to have a furnace go out, but it does happen. It seems that each season has brought its' own challenges and rewards, but that's life. So, this season we have had the pleasure of needing a new snowblower and having the furnace worked on. I sincerely thanked God for providing the means and the local resources for what we needed. I also thanked God that we were now through with challenges for the time being and looking forward to Spring. You know – sometimes I should just quit while I’m ahead. Nope, I'm from the east coast, and we are renowned for being obstinate and stubborn.
Now, as previously mentioned, I do not shy away from doing mechanical repairs. This is especially true if my YouTube instructors have provided an instructional video. However, it is essential to watch the video all the way through. So I was about to learn in a shocking way. Cathy wanted to rearrange the basement area to allow for more storage, access, and movement. She is so practical that way. So it was that the electric dryer had to move. This necessitated replacing the now too short power cord. Pretty simple, really, just turn off the power, remove and replace the cord. The simple task was accomplished in short order. Power was hooked up, and a trial run was completed. Success! Now all I had to do was replace the power cord cover, and we could move onto the next project. With the metal plate in hand, I adjusted it to fit the opening when the metal made contact with both the ground wire and a positive wire. Did I mention
shocking? Yes, it most certainly was. However, the worst part was that with the sparking, there was a shorting of the circuit. No problem, I'll just reset the circuit breaker. Now it gets interesting. There were no thrown breakers – none. On top of that, half of the house circuits were out. After much searching and experimenting, I used a well-known football axiom: I dropped back 10 yards and punted. What next? You guessed it – I called an electrician. Did I forget to mention this was on a Saturday, i.e., weekend rates apply? The electrician arrived and did an extensive search for the problem. He reminded me of a surgeon doing exploratory surgery. The diagnosis was that the problem was on the power pole and the lines coming into the house. Oh, and we were informed the partial power outage also meant no well pump water. The electrician said the company would try to get one of their bucket trucks to respond, but it might not be until Monday.
I was set to hunker down with partial power until Monday. Well, at least we had great heat from the furnace that had been serviced the prior week. Cathy had run into town to get gallons of water that we, and the pets, would need. It was shortly after she left that I heard a significant rumbling outside the house. Now what? It turned out to be two bucket trucks from our local power cooperative. I should mention here that it was dark, cold, and sleeting, which added to the overall memorable experience. The two gentlemen explained they had been called about a need at my address. I had not called them. Someone else – the electrician – knew what we needed. The repair was affected with 30 minutes. This required all power to be shut off to the house. It was a little unnerving to see the house completely dark with absolutely no light from within. What really surprised me was the technician explaining that the two frayed lines were ready to go at any time, and this night was that time. They needed immediate replacing, and the technician had the exact power line cables required. Aside from the sudden unexpected appearance of the repair trucks, the memorable portion of this experience was how courteous, professional, and friendly both technicians were. It was like we were all family, and in a genuine sense, up here on the North Shore, we are.
I sincerely hope and pray that there are no more significant challenges this season than what the past two weeks have brought. Imagine a life with no “power” inside and how truly dark it can be without others. However, these experiences have also affirmed that God always provides what we need when we need it. It also is a reminder that sometimes, others know what we need more than we do and don't hold back. Seems like this is what friendship is all about.
Our encouragement verse for this week is:
Proverbs 3:27 (NIV)
“Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to act.”
May you be blessed by God's word.