I placed my breakfast in the microwave last Saturday and pressed “Start,” assuming that the little light would come on as it had hundreds of times. Instead, I was greeted with a weird sound — “zwerp” — and darkness.
Since we had replaced our stove earlier in the week, I thought that another appliance might have given out on us.
I called Zac at work to give him the update, and he asked me to check the radio that is plugged into a different outlet on a nearby counter. It wasn’t working either.
Zac diagnosed our problem as a tripped breaker.
I walked outside to the breaker box, but everything seemed to be pointing in the right direction. The labels weren’t at all helpful.
Even with Zac talking me through it via the phone, I still managed to flip the wrong switch. If the fate of the free world ever rests on my ability to disarm a bomb, we are doomed.
Understandably eager to get me away from all things electrical, Zac told me to leave the breaker alone until he got home.
“No big deal,” I thought. “I’ll just use the toaster oven.”
Then I discovered that the toaster oven outlet, which is on the opposite side of the kitchen, was also affected by the blackout.
A normal person probably would have taken this opportunity to try out the new stove. What I actually did was lug the microwave across the kitchen to a working outlet situated just a few inches away from the toaster oven.
Zac has informed me several times that he can’t make any sense out of the way our house is wired.
I realized what he meant later that morning when I tried to vacuum part of our living room and found that the outlet I needed to use was on the same breaker as the microwave and the toaster oven.
By mid-afternoon, I had learned that Zac’s alarm clock in our bedroom and our carport door were also without power.
At first, I was irritated at having to rearrange my activities around broken outlets.
Then I began to marvel at the previously unknown connection between the various gadgets in our home.
Prior to this incident, I wouldn’t have guessed that the microwave and the carport door had anything in common, but on that day one was not going to be up and running again until the other was as well.
I am learning a similar lesson in my own life.
Mind, body and soul are interdependent. A problem that affects one has repercussions for all.
This year, I am observing Lent for the first time.
I am abstaining from Facebook and my favorite blogs to reprogram my mind and from caffeine to cleanse my body.
I am also reading through Psalms and Proverbs during this 40-day period for the benefit of my soul.
The process has not been very encouraging.
Within a week, I succumbed to my craving for sweet tea. By week two, the only reason I am still on track in my reading plan is because I have had to catch up several times after skipping a morning’s worth of passages.
Facebook is the only vice that no longer tempts me.
Although I am not proud of my failures, they have helped me connect some important dots.
For example, I have noticed that I crave sweet tea the most when I am feeling stressed.
When I am in a bad mood at the end of the day, I can usually trace it back to the fact that I hit the ground running that morning instead of taking some time to sit in the quiet.
Over the next few months, I plan to take a hard look at my internal breaker box and flip a few switches that seem to be causing me some problems.
Cross your fingers that nothing blows up.