It was May of 2009 and I was feeling hot and uncomfortable. The warm summer air had already started to creep into the days of May just as school had ended for the year and I caved. I couldn’t take the heat anymore so I turned on the air conditioning. The frugal side of me was screaming, “No! Hold out one more day” but I was uncomfortable being pregnant and wanted a reprieve. I tried to turn on the air conditioner, and nothing happened. The fan would blow, but as far as I could tell, it was all hot air. And so I waited for my husband to come home and when he went outside to investigate, he found what looked like acid corrosion on the air conditioning unit. It didn’t look hopeful. The service man confirmed our worst fear, we needed an entirely new unit.
Any other normal summer my husband would have done the sensible thing and financed a new unit through one credit option or another, but this summer was different. His wife was pregnant and a stay at home mother to two children and he was out of work. He had been desperately trying to sell health insurance without success. The economy had recently been hit by a new recession and the job market was less than flooded with openings.We did what seemed wise and we waited. The hot humid air would fill the house and we would utter desperate prayers to our God. Something like, “please God, it’s hot and I don’t know how much longer we can take this.” Friends gave us fans, we mostly barbequed our dinners to keep the heat of cooking outside of the kitchen. Someone offered to buy a window unit. They saw our plight and wanted to give generously. Financing was not an option due to the employment circumstances and the fact that we could barely afford food, much less a new hefty repayment plan. We were peniless and so we waited.
We wanted our God to show up, we wanted to be seen by Him.
It was mid July and already 90 degrees at 9 am inside our home. I had previously made a committment to myself not to complain everyday to my friends on my social media outlets because no one likes a complainer, but I had reached a boiling point and I put it out there for all of the world to read. “It’s 90 degrees inside our house and it’s only 9am!” A friend read the status and asked her husband to keep his eye out for a window unit or something that could cool us off. He has the type of job where he comes into contact with a lot of people in a day, and wouldn’t you know that his very first client of the day had an air conditioning unit they were planning on donating to charity. When he saw the unit, he boldly asked if they would be interested in donating it to us, and they agreed.
Another generous heart. But here’s where my story get’s interesting and the word, miracle, can be used as a tag line. Air conditioners are not like welcome mats, that just sit outside and do their job, they have to fit like engine pieces. They are not swappable. Depending on the size of your home, the square footage will dictate the size of the unit. We were overjoyed when we heard the news that a stranger wanted to give us an air conditioning unit. When we called our service company to schedule an installation, reality came crashing down on us again. They said, “we’ve seen this happen a thousand times before; people try to swap these things between houses but it just doesn’t work that way. Don’t get your hopes up.” For good measure they took down the unit’s make and model and crunched the numbers. About an hour later we got the call, the unit would fit. Again, hope had sprung a leak in our heart. They warned us again, that because it had been sitting unused, all of the freon had most likely leaked out of the unit. That would cost around $500.00 to replace. They also said that because it had been sitting unused, there was the possibility it would not work at all after being transported across town. But we had hope. It was our only hope at that point.
My husband knew that the installation of the unit would take about 6 hours. Hoping to speed up the process and to cool down the house by bedtime, he met the service man at the house to help in any way he could. The house had reached 100 degrees F and I had taken the kids to a friend’s house to swim. 2 hours later the installation was complete, a record installation for that company. The freon that most likely leaked out of the unit was full. The unit turned on and immediately began working to cool the house. The service man told my husband, “Jesus must really love you, because I’ve never seen this happen before.” All of the pieces had to fit together just perfectly and they did.
Only God, the author and creator of the universe can fashion a more perfect scenario. He brought a generous heart with an unused air conditioner together with a family melting from the heat. He is the God who sees.
Today, if you’re feeling forgotten by God, take heart; He sees you.