What I learned when the air conditioning died…

Texas heat cannot be understood through words or description. For full effect it must be experienced. If you’ve ever lived here, you know where I’m coming from. If you haven’t, there are not enough synonyms for the hellish hot of a Texas heat wave in August.

Imagine my dismay when I walked into the house, and my husband informed me the air conditioning wasn’t working. “It’s o.k.” He said in an attempt to encourage me. “We’ll survive one night.”

That was five days ago. FIVE DAYS! And let me just tell you at my forty something age warm, stuffy nights are your enemy. The heat must have zapped my mind when I suggested we take a few days to explore options on replacing the unit.

So we endure. Sticky. Stuffy. Fans turning at tornado speeds. We install a window unit to get us through and keep me from crawling under the deck to lay in the cool dirt with my puppies.


Our sweet  friends and family invite us to stay in their homes.  But as each day passes I realize I’m learning lessons through it all.

Lesson Number One: Around here you might have to wear dirty clothes or go hungry because we are not, I repeat not, using an heat generating appliance.

Lesson Number Two: Do not get overheated outside, because well… you’ll stay overheated.

Lesson Number Three: Heaven might just sound like the noise of a window unit.

The last lesson crept in over the quiet opening of the back door. My youngest came home from school and paused with the door open to acknowledge the pups. All was silent. No one yelled, “Shut the door! You’ll let all the cold air out!” Not once in five days have I heard the phrase so common to Texans in the summer. I grinned to myself and thought, Leave the darn door open wide. 

Something shifts…

How often do I hide in the comfort of my air conditioned routines and ways? What really keeps me yelling, “Shut the door!” Maybe its the cost of cooling it down again. Or the thought of waste in cooling the entire outside world.

I hear the echo of my friend’s father’s voice, “Shut the &#$% door!” No matter the temp outside or how fast you came in, this was his habitual greeting to teen girls.

Hmmmm…could it be habit. Is it possible I have a shut the door mentality when it comes to my  own comfort and norm? I’m afraid it is more than a possibility. It’s reality. Even worse there are times I find myself telling others to shut the door too.

Dare I say I whispered a prayer of thanksgiving for my broken down air conditioner in that moment. Though I’ll admit I finished the  prayer with a humble request to continue my lessons in an air conditioned environment.

Despite the heat, I feel Him urging to  fling windows and doors open wide, as I hear the Spirit whisper…

Let go… enter the wide space of open doors. The cost has already been paid to cool every inch of this entire world. And nothing… Not. One. Thing… is wasted.


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