Our furnace died Saturday, and no amount of button-pushing or breaker-switching would bring it back to life.
Here we sit, two days later, with a corpse of a furnace in the basement as we brace against a ferocious wind whipping our white, wild world. Walls and windows rattle.
The furnace repairman can’t make it up our drifted-in driveway until tomorrow. So we seek warmth in cups of hot tea and feet pajamas. We press in ever-closer to find heat in the presence of a sister’s torso and a shared blanket.
It’s not so bad, really. We’re not shivering or turning blue. (This morning, our thermal-skinned Lydia even refuses to wear socks or long sleeves!)
Church friends loaned us an electric-heater that we’re using to warm the girls’ bedrooms. And with a push of a button on the wall, we have a fire raging in the living room. For now, it’s enough to keep us warm until the repairman resurrects the dead.
Photo: Tipped snowglobe, against backdrop of tipped snowglobe.
I woke this morning to crisp air and creaking floors and flying flakes in God’s tipped snowglobe.
I turned on the fireplace, and thanked God for modern inventions. (Were I to begin with complaints on this day, I would have been stopped short during morning prayers for Haiti. The hurt in our shared world puts our minor inconveniences into sharp perspective.)
School is canceled — again — and I set out trays for breakfast near the fire. I find a place near the flames and wait for the girls to wake.
I open the Bible to John 21 to read a story of a Jesus-made campfire. The Word is kindling.
I tuck my cold toes under my legs — (I’m not wearing socks either!) — and I read from leather-bound Word about some fishermen who’ve had a cold streak of their own. They couldn’t catch any fish.
Someone shouted warmly from the shore:
“Good morning! Did you catch anything for breakfast?”
They answered, “No.”
He said, “Throw the net off the right side of the boat and see what happens.”
They did what he said. All of a sudden there were so many fish in it, they weren’t strong enough to pull it in.
Then the disciple Jesus loved said to Peter, “It’s the Master!”
— From John 21, in the Message
The story says they raced for the shore, where the Risen Jesus waited near a warm fire He’s made.
“Jesus said, “Breakfast is ready.”
And I savor those warm words on this cold day. I eat them. And they satisfy the hunger and cold within me. I find Risen Jesus near the fire during my cold streak.
I find He is the very fire, and I bow low in reverence and awe.
The girls with mussed-hair wake late on this morning, trudging up the stairs from the basement in their jammies and blankies. They see a fire roaring, with breakfast trays ready.
This isn’t a four-course meal — just bowls of cereal, and apple juice.
But this is how we beat back the cold.
We gather by the fire, and remember the stories, and start our day with Jesus. We find shelter in His wings.
This is our Breakfast of Champions — fortified with vitamins and minerals and the warmth of an Unseen Guest who daily calls to us:
“Breakfast is Ready.”
Let us begin each day with You, who daily invites us to dine with you on your very Word — a breakfast of λόγος. Let me never skip breakfast with you. You satisfy every hunger. Amen.