One of the pressing issues for most Bahamians this summer is the issue of load shedding (scheduled power outages). To say the least, it has been a painful experience. While this has been an annual occurrence for years, this year’s version has been the most egregious in recent history, disrupting businesses, causing major discomfort during this peak heat season and in some ways endangering the lives of the elderly and vulnerable. There is much blame and aspersion going around, as well as finger pointing between political groups – but at the end of the day it is really an individual problem. It is a national problem on the macro level but on the micro level the individuals affected have a problem that they must face individually. Of course, we must all agitate for an overall solution – but let’s face it, the overall solution is not within our power. The individual solution is within our power.
If you visit Facebook or WhatsApp groups, there is a constant barrage of complaints and venting of frustrations, but I have seen very little talk about what to do, what concrete steps can be taken on an individual level to combat the load shedding issue. I am a proactive person so whenever a problem shows up, I may complain for a short time but after the initial complaint my next thought is what can I do to make my situation better. I realize I cannot change other people’s decisions, but I can control mine, and I will always look at my options and decide what is best for me in the current situation.
While we wait for an overall solution as Bahamians, we have to decide what we do in the meantime. In this vein, I have come up with a short list of recommendations that may help, and shift the focus of the suffering. In thinking about this situation, I am reminded of the Bible verse that says, “In all these things (trials) we are more than conquerors through Christ.”
The first step to overcoming is to believe that no matter what the situation is you will conquer, and you will overcome. Sometimes it’s so difficult you may feel there is no way out – but at the end of the day, attitude is access to your solution. If you focus on feelings of defeat, you may put yourself in a corner where you cannot see hope anymore. If you focus on victory, you begin to see options that were previously invisible.
I thought about the current situation and came up with a short list of things to do until the power issues are resolved. Here are my recommendations in light of Bahamas Power and Light (BPL) issues. Complaints and agitation are good but the situation you control is your own, so you need to come up with your best plan to combat the situation. No matter how many complaints there are, your situation will change only when you take action. With that thought in mind I want you to consider what you can do to change your situation for the better – or at least take some steps now that will prepare you for the future. My question to you is: what is your plan? The following are some things to consider in formulating your plan:
• Purchase a generator;
• Ask a neighbor who has one for assistance;
• Purchase an auto inverter (that can run some appliances from your car);
• Purchase a UPS battery backup that can power a fan and some light;
• Schedule time at a local establishment that has a generator during load shedding; or
• Begin purchasing solar panels for the future.
This list could go on, but the point is, whenever there is reason to complain individual action should be taken to put yourself in the best position to either survive or overcome.
Be ye also ready for you know not the day or the hour when BPL will turn off the lights!
• Pastor Dave Burrows is senior pastor at Bahamas Faith Ministries International. Feel free to email comments, whether you agree or disagree, to firstname.lastname@example.org. I appreciate your input and dialogue. We become better when we discuss, examine and exchange.