Contentment or Frustration

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Nick and I have been talking a lot lately about what the word contentment means. The bible says that we are to be content in ALL things... But unfortunately I think that is easier said then done, and that contentment has been hard to find lately. Instead of finding contentment, what I have found to be it's opposite has replaced it. frustration.

Here is a picture of a regulator. Looks like just a regular regulator, sure, but this little tiny piece of equipment was the start of a considerable source of frustration.

Let me tell you why. 

So power has been bad lately. Not like off for 2 weeks straight bad, but off for more then 12-14 hours a day bad and most of the time that it's on is while we are sleeping. So that means if I want to get anything done I have to stay up late or run the generator in the day to do it.

Also at this time we started to realize that our batteries that are used to power our 12v lights, fans and Internet when the power is off, were starting to die very quickly, leaving us often with our lights and fans at night. Which right now we are getting to the middle of rainy season when it is 100 degrees with 90% humidity and if these Canadians don't have a fan... Well they just don't sleep. However at first we were not to sure if this was because we did not have enough power during the day to charge them or if our batteries were needing to be replaced.

We had some money that was set aside for us from a faithful supporter in an equipment fund to help improve our house in circumstances like this, so Nick went out a bought some solar panels hoping that  they would be able to charge the batteries in lieu of the power being off for long periods. Up he went one day to go install the panels, yay so exciting! Then while he was up there he took a step on a weak spot in our old aspestius (sp?) roof and poof a hole the size of a man appeared (Nick was fine, he didn't fall in. He just made the hole). So now we have a hole in our roof in the middle of rainy season. 

We quickly covered it up with some plastic (which I really don't think would have done anything if it rained but it's the thought that counts) and called some of our good missionary friends to come over when they could to help us out. 2 days later we were finally able to get someone in to patch the roof just in time as it started to rain not 30 min later. Woo that was close! However then we started to realize that our solar panels are not charging the batteries. They are putting out electricity when the sun is out but when it gets to the regulator we got nothing.

Nick plays around with it for a few days and finally gets some advice from another missionary friend on how to wire it correctly. So we get that working. Yay. 

After all that our batteries are still not charging and we finally come to the conclusion that our batteries are just kaput. So we have new batteries on the way... Which are on a shipment and will maybe be here in a couple weeks. Awesome...

So middle of rainy season, with power getting worse and no lights and fans at night (and really your not gunna light a bunch of candles... It's hot enough already) 

This is just one example of the many different things that have been going on and all of this Nick has been trying to help and deal with after long, significantly stressful days filled full of extortion, corruption and disappointment. Needless to say his job is hard and it is very very frustrating. Which I would love to expand on but alas the public World Wide Web is not the place. 

So where is the contentment in all of this? Yes yes I know Sunday school answer is 'Jesus', however in the midst of the difficulty sometimes it's hard to see the purpose. 

This world is fleeting and it's not even all the material difficulties are really a big deal, it's not really that big of a deal that our batteries don't come in for a few weeks; but it's the frustration and disappointment that slithers it's way deep into your bones. If your not careful to get rid of it before it gets too deep, it takes a long long time to get it back out. So if you could remember us in your prayers and ask God if he would shine his light into our bones and sear away the frustration and disappointment and replace it with his contentment to do his work and bring him glory. 

*** I don't write this post to be negative or for other people to add on their bad experiences in Congo but I write this to help those who love us have a better understanding of our lives and it's a part of out lives that could use lifting up in prayer. So please as thumper would say 'if you don't have anything nice to say don't say anything at all'. Thank you