by Kolleen Lucariello
It was hot outside. As in, really hot for where I live in central New York state. After a long-hard-winter and a cold-snowy-spring, we’d been looking forward to the arrival of summer’s warmth. But just two weeks into summer, and we found ourselves in the middle of a record heat wave. I began to rethink our need for air conditioning.
Pat and I haven’t had air conditioning for most of the 33 years we’ve lived in our home. A few years ago we decided a small one for the bedroom would be beneficial, so we’d at least be able to sleep in unbearable heat.
Usually, I enjoy opening windows to the fresh air. New York summers aren’t like southern ones. Over the years people have attempted to talk us into getting air conditioning, including our children. But just when we might’ve have been convinced, the heat-wave would break, and any urgency we’d begun to feel vanished. Like many New Yorkers, we’d dealt with the heat in other ways, making excuses like:
We can go in the basement if it gets too hot.
It only gets hot here a few days of the year so there really isn’t a need for it.
I don’t like air conditioning, I prefer fresh air.
We don’t need the extra expense.
We’ve survived this long without it.
Then the news reports began to predict record heat – for a record number of days. I wasn’t sure I could take it. Hot flashes AND record heat – together? After talking it over with Pat, we decided it was time to give in to the warnings and purchase a unit that would cool off the rest of the house.
Now on day four of this current heat wave, there’s no doubt I would have suffered without our newly installed unit. I’d have been uncomfortable, grumpy, and miserable for the duration. Our visiting family would have suffered, too.
It makes me think of all the years I had a list of reasons why I didn’t need Jesus. “I’ve survived this long without Him.” “It will cost too much, and I’m not willing to sacrifice anything to follow Him.” “Easter and Christmas is enough church for me.” “I only need Him when the pressure of life is too great.”
Until I realized that missing piece in my life made me uncomfortable and grumpy, which made those around me miserable, too.
And then I met Him. And I wondered: why did I wait so long? Why did I refuse His gift of refreshing Living Water? Why did I make so many excuses? What was I so afraid of? For sure, beginning a personal relationship with Him outweighed any potential cost.
Jesus addressed our tendency to make excuses with this parable: “There was a man who invited many to join him in a great feast. When the day for the feast arrived, the host instructed his servant to notify all the invited guests and tell them, ‘Come, for everything is now ready for you!’ But one by one they all made excuses. One said, ‘I can’t come. I just bought some property and I’m obligated to go and look it over’” (Luke 14:16-18 TPT).
God has done everything necessary for us to have a relationship with Him. Maybe it’s time to let go of excuses and discover the joy of His refreshment. You’ll wonder why it took so long to finally make that choice.
These have been written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name. John 20:31 NASB
About the author: Kolleen Lucariello, #TheABCGirl, is the author of the devotional book, The ABC’s of Who God Says I Am. Kolleen shares her struggle with identity authentically, bravely and yet, with compassion and humor as she seeks to help others change their identity – one letter at a time. Kolleen and her high school sweetheart, Pat, make their home in Central New York. She’s mother of three married children and Mimi to five beautiful grandkids. For more information about Kolleen, visit her at www.speakkolleen.com.
Join the conversation: How has your life changed since meeting Jesus?