The other day I put a new pop-up drain, drain pipe, locknut, flange, ball rod, gasket, tailpiece, slip-nut on our bathroom sink… and it all works! Since we are low in funds, I try to figure out how to fix things myself instead of paying someone to do it. This can be a good thing and a bad thing…
You see, back before school let out for the summer, our bathroom sink’s drain was clogged up. So I poured drano down it, but to no avail. I then tried snaking the pipe, but was unsuccessful at getting the clog out. I knew I needed to call a plumber, but I figured I’d try the industrial strength drain cleaner first – the one that comes with the bottle sealed in an extra plastic bag for protection. I put on my plastic gloves that I use when dying my hair and put on sunglasses to protect my eyes and poured it down the drain. After waiting the appropriate time, I went back for the next step. That’s when I noticed my problem… maybe I shouldn’t have used that strength cleaner on the type of pipes we have, but it ate away at the pipes and my drain basically came out. Ugh! So I stuck a dish pan in the cabinet under the sink and knew I should probably call the plumber.
But then, the dish pan wasn’t so bad, we’d wash our hands, brush our teeth and the water would go down the sink and drain into the pan. Once a day, I’d dump the dirty water from the dish pan into the toilet. It wasn’t ideal, but it worked. So I never called the plumber, and that’s how we functioned for 3 months. Then on Tuesday, I went into the bathroom and the floor was wet, apparently I forgot to empty the dish pan and it overflowed onto the floor. It was definitely time to fix this for real.
But still being stubborn and not wanting to pay a plumber to do something I could do, I put all the pieces into a bag and went to our neighborhood True Value Hardware store. The workers there were so nice. They picked out exactly what I needed, showed me how to install it, and even offered for me to call over to the store if I was having problems and they would talk me through it. I went home and you know what? I did it! The flange is attached to the sink, the drain pipe is attached to the flange and the ball rod, which is attached to the old clevis, which is attached to the lift rod that now works as well to pull up the newly installed pop-up plug. (Can you tell I’m impressed with myself and am showing off a little bit with tossing these plumbing terms around?) And apparently that industrial strength drain cleaner I used 3 months ago which messed up the drain to begin with cleared the clog, because the water is going down the drain.
Well, before I go hiring myself out or thinking God’s calling me to be a plumber in my next stage of life (see yesterday’s post), I’ll admit that it seems like something might be dripping a little, so I still have the dish pan in the bottom of the sink cabinet. But I do need to call in a plumber to clear out the line coming from my washer because right now, the washer drains too fast for the pipes. I tried snaking that line, but didn’t get it clear, and after my last experience, I don’t want to go pouring the cleaner down it. When he comes, perhaps I’ll have him, double-check my bathroom sink handiwork too.
So, now for the spiritual connection… I was thinking about how long we lived with that imperfection of the sink. The sink was working, we’d turn on the water and wash our hands or brush our teeth, and the water would drain out of the sink. But instead of going down the pipes, it would go into a pan that we’d have to empty. The sink was functioning, but not fully the way it was intended to. And we were content to use it that way. Then I think about all of my imperfections. I still can function with them, but not the way I’m intended to. So I wonder, like the sink, am I content to go through life with my imperfections, or do I want to ask the Master Plumber to help fix them?
“Not that I already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.” (Philippians 3:12)
♥Becki, imperfect plumber