After 3 weeks we finally have 24 hour lights. Thanks to a generous donation we were able to buy what is called an inverter. I am not exactly sure how it works, you would have to ask Randy the specifics, but basically it is a machine hooked up to a couple of batteries that generates a certain amount of electricity when there is no electricity. For 3 weeks we lived with 4-12 hours of light a day, and those days when there is a lot, most of it comes in the night time and wee morning hours . This also affects our water supply and the inverter can’t run our pump, but that is a whole different story.
I will admit it was hard to become accustomed to no power. I am a total wimp. There are so many places in the world that have no power, or only a couple hours of power a day. Here are the things I enjoyed about not having electricity. I enjoyed the tranquility the lack of power brings. When there is no extra sounds in your home, or in the streets, there is a certain peacefulness that extends throughout the entire house. I enjoyed the times at night reading to our kids by candlelight. It is also much easier to communicate with your husband when there is no distractions; there is no internet, nothing to watch on the computer. There is a lot less distraction when there is no light. Also, the joy that follows when the lights turn on is almost worth the time of not having light. Every time the lights come on EVERYONE starts cheering, and it is an extreme feeling of relief even if it for a brief time.
The funny things about not having electricity is not only do so many people in the world not have lights, but people lived without light for thousands of years. I found myself putting myself into stories that I have read where the person would read by candlelight or by the fire; stories like Little House on the Prairie and Abraham Lincoln. I have been reading a Tale of Two Cities and there are parts where they talk about an appearance of a room by how the candles our lit throughout. This description for me made so much more sense.
Some of the things that are enjoyable are also the things that are hard. I felt completely cut off from the outside world. Which makes me think about how amazing missionaries of old were that could only communicate with the anyone via letters that took months and months to arrive. I couldn’t talk to my family very easily at all because when we had power was up in the air and they may not be available when there is power. It was hard to answer emails, and get the stuff done that I needed to do on the computer. Whenever the lights were on, and I was home and awake, I always felt stressed to get all the things done that I needed to get done. Probably for me the one of the most difficult parts is that I have always been a little scared of the dark. This was multiplied by being in a new house, a new neighborhood, and having no lights sometimes at night.
I am reflecting on this all now just after leaving this small season of life to say I am thankful for electricity. I am thankful for light instead of darkness. I am thankful that the analogy of Jesus being the Light of the world makes so much more sense. We were all in darkness but the Light of the World came down into darkness to shine light on the darkness, that we don’t have to live in it any longer.