We have a team staying in our home this week. It is actually a combo of two teams, one has 5 members and the other has 15 members. We aren't leading this team just housing and feeding them. =) If you have never cooked for over 25 people you should try it sometime. It is a lot of work but it can also be a lot of fun. No really, it can be fun!
Anywho, we have a gas water heater and we were trying to bless the team with warm showers instead of cold or shockingly cold showers but it backfired on us because everyone was enjoying the shower so much that they were taking 2 a day and not in any hurry to get out. I know many of you are thinking what is the big deal right? Well, here in the DR things are different, obviously. We have a huge undeground tank (a cistern) in our front yard that holds water that is pumped in from the "street" or city water system and it does not flow everyday. We can actually go a week without it pumping in to refill the cistern. While our cistern is the largest on the block and holds as much as a small swimming pool but we still need to watch our comsumption because we never know when it will stop flowing and for how long.
Guess what happened mid week with this team? Yes, you guessed it...we went from a full cistern on Saturday morning to an empty one on Wednesday morning. That means that with 25 people in this house we could not flush toilets, run water in the sinks, or wash dishes much less take showers. We asked the teams to pray for the water to begin pumping in from the street again and that we would be able to contact a water truck, which can be expensive, to come and dump water into our cistern in the meantime.
We were able to contact a water truck and they were able to come out that afternoon to help replinish the cistern and while they were here emptying the truck of water the street pump came on. Praise the LORD!! It was getting pretty stinky in the humid house with 4 toilets full and needing to be flushed. Haha!
Once the water was back in the cistern we went to turn the pump on to get the water flowing back through the house and it would not work. Mind you that the pump was new, only a week old, and it wasn't working. Matthew came up with the idea of hauling buckets of water to a rope and lifting them up the side of the house to the roof to pour into the tank up there so that gravity itself would help to distribute the water throughout the house. Great idea!! After about 4 buckets he was already getting tired and we were recruiting team members to take shifts. 20 something buckets later the tank was finally showing signs of the work being put in. In the meantime we were trying to get the pump fixed and taking buckets full of water in and pouring them into the backs of the toilets in order to flush them. I just had to laugh. I mean what else can you do in that kind of situation except find the humor right?!
Fortunately, the pump was fixed within a few hours and we were back on track again. Needless to say, there were no more warm showers which meant that the showers were quicker and a little less frequent. Hahaha!
We are so thankful for the teams' flexibility and that they all seemed to just take it in stride. They also got to see God answer their prayers...quickly! All this to say that you need to remember to be thankful for the little things in life. Remember how truly blessed you are in the U.S. that you do not have to worry about your water running out, when you turn on the faucet it is always flowing. No worries about pumps to get water from under ground to your roof and from your roof through the rest of your house and the wondering of when will a repairman get here to fix this problem (in this country taking a few days to fix anything is "normal"). Not only fix it, but do it correctly instead of just rigging it to work for now. =) When you do not know what else to thank God for - though we know there is so much more to be thankful for - just tell Him thank you for running water, a roof over your head, humor, and good friends.
May His love abound in your hearts today and everyday!