Ask the LORD for rain in the springtime; It is the LORD who sends the thunderstorms. He gives showers of rain to all people, and plants of the field to everyone. Zechariah 10:1
My family and I live in Mua Hills, Machakos. Sitting on an elevation of 2050m, we see beautiful landscapes in all directions. The sunsets are amazing, breathtaking and peaceful. It has been touted as the Muthaiga and Karen of Machakos, but do we say? So as you can imagine, we have pretty high profile neighbors! Governors, Politicians, career civil servants. Name it. Only 10 years ago, the land value was about 200k per acre, but now, we are in the millions!
But as beautiful and breathtaking as this place is, the perennial problem is water. A majority of the residents depend on rain as the only source of water, so we wait on the rain seasons – to replenish our water reserves and perhaps push us through to the next rain season. Well, a majority of us, because there are those who have boreholes.
Like the wealthy politician down the road who has 2 boreholes in his home (why does he need 2)? Anyway, apparently, he disconnected the water to the main house because he was having issues with his estranged wife, even though he doesn’t even live there. His wife says that she had to fetch water from the swimming pool. Eish. They even have a swimming pool! A borehole isn’t a cheap venture. It costs a lot of money and most of us hatuna hiyo pesa (don’t have that money).
And then there is the other ‘bling bling’ politician who also has a borehole. First of all, he has 2 palatial homes on separate pieces of land for his 2 wives. And he keeps a large herd of goats and sheep. I’ve even seen horses. Well, if you have water 24/7, you can afford to do those types of things. And also to keep your grass and trees watered all year round. When it is very dry, people will knock at his gate with jerrycans asking for water.
I’m told that there used to be a piped water line from a public reservoir at the bottom of the hill. Water would be pumped upwards three times a week into community tanks where people could buy water at 5 shillings per mtungi, cash of course. But as the story goes, some of the wealthy politicians piped this water to their homes, which is not even the problem. The problem is that they would not pay their water bills. So with time, the bill ran so high that the water council could not service the water pump. And then the pump and pipes, lying idle, were vandalized and sold for scrap metal. Because this is the country where the rich do not pay their water bills, but can afford to drill boreholes and build swimming pools. But who suffers when the community pipes have run dry? It’s not the rich, because even in the event that their boreholes run dry, they can buy water from the water trucks.
And then there is the case of the community dam that was to be built. It was meant to be a collection point where all the surface water from the rain flows, instead of wasting away downstream. Millions were spent on it. On paper, it was built to completion, but in reality, it is a white elephant project. Because this is the country where ‘kwa ground, vitu ni different’! The rains are coming, and the much needed water will drain away. Again!
A few minutes down the road, there is this rich lawyer who has excavated a water pond on communal land bordering his home. Apparently, he has a mean wife who will not let the villagers fetch water from it. She uses it to water her vegetable garden, so it’s more than she will ever need. So the villagers have to resort to waking up at 5am to come and steal water before the lady wakes up. If she finds you, you run away because she has her workers confiscate the mtungis (jerrycans). Amazingly, every time she does that, that same night, the rain pours!
And then there is my neighbor who also has excavated a small dam. I’m not sure if he is a Christian, in fact some people say he smokes weed. He told me that he used to keep people from fetching water from his dam. And then he said that strangely, the water would run out. Now he allows people to collect as much water as they need, and there is always water in the dam. Enough for him and for others!
So, to this God, who sends the thunderstorms; to this God who gives showers of rain to all people, and especially to those who cannot afford to dig boreholes and buy water trucks; to this God who cares and sides with the poor, even when those responsible for alleviating their problems are busy stealing from them; to this God, the rain maker, be praise and glory, forever and ever. Amen.