I'm fascinated at the white clouds of vapor that come out of my mouth in the cool air. Every breath, every word, every sigh produces a new cloud. My teeth shatter, and my body shakes. My shoulders feel as if they are dangling from my ears, so hiked up are they in an attempt to conserve body heat. Yes, this is a very typical day in South Carolina in February.
What is not typical is that I'm inside, and it's still that cold! You see, our heating unit, which is probably as old as I am, went out several years back. An inconvenience, but not a problem since our house has a very nice wood stove. It does an excellent job of keeping the house comfortable. . . when we have wood to put in it.
For several years, we had no problem collecting enough wood to see us through the winter. In fact, we often collected so much that we gave a lot away to family, friends, and church members. Since Jason has changed jobs, however, his schedule does not allow the time for us to go cut firewood like we used to. For the past couple of years, we've been keeping just enough to get us through. But when Jason's schedule became overwhelming last week, we weren't able to go out and get any wood. We ran out last weekend, and we haven't had the opportunity to get any.
We know some people at church who cut and deliver firewood, so we agreed to talk with them on Sunday. They were supposed to bring us a trailer-load of wood on Monday or Tuesday. As of this writing, it still hasn't arrived. The really bad part is that the weathermen are calling for snow tonight!
Thankfully, I have a space heater that does an excellent job of keeping the bedroom warm. I am currently snuggled in bed and working from my laptop. It's not an ideal situation, but it's cozy. And more importantly, it's warm. My house is falling apart because it's too cold in the other parts of the house to sweep, dust, straighten, etc. I can barely keep up with the dishes and laundry. Still, I'm thankful for my refuge.
This world is a cold place, and as much as I hate to admit it, it seems as if it's getting colder. Isn't it a blessing to know that we, as Christians, have a refuge? We have a place to go where we can find comfort, peace, and love. No matter how cold or dark the world may be, we can always run to the Father. He's waiting with open arms. And no space heater in the world can offer the warmth that only He can provide.