It was Friday night. I went upstairs to get something and noticed that it was unusually warm. It had been a scorching day so I assumed the air conditioning was having a hard time keeping up.
A few minutes later I had to go back upstairs again. This time I noticed it was even warmer. I checked the thermostat. It registered 90 degrees. Holy Smokes was the house on fire? I put my foot on the vent and felt only the faintest amount of cool air. Something was wrong.
I opened the windows. Next, the ceiling fan needed to be turned up to high. That was going to be another problem. Four years ago the chain broke and it’s stayed on medium speed ever since. This is ridiculous because all fixing it required was disassembling the globe and attaching a new longer chain which I had.
When I say “all it would take” though I’m leaving out one important detail—the ladder. Not wanting to deal with that at the moment I went for the quick fix and just took the globe off to adjust the speed. This could be done standing on the bed.
Monday morning I got a call out to Al Ray my HVAC guy. He could come later in the day. This meant the fan globe needed to be put back. Al Ray isn’t Martha Stewart but I still couldn’t cope with him seeing my now tacky looking ceiling fan. It completely ruined the room’s aesthetic. For vanity’s sake, I had to bite the bullet and get the ladder.
To the outsider this sounds like a silly obstacle but getting an eight foot ladder into my house is tricky. You have to carry it up two flights of stairs one of which spirals. Eight foot ladders tend to be a bit clumsy and going up the spiral you have to watch out for three hanging light fixtures, a glass table, a huge mirror, a large hanging picture and the fancy stair railing. More than one workman has nicked the trim or put a hole in the drywall.
But Al Ray was so out to the garage I went to fetch the ladder. It was buried behind three sets of skis and a snowboard but I had reached the necessary point of no return so that didn’t stop me.
I made it up the first flight without incident. Now I faced the spiral. Upright with the ladder parallel to me I somehow got halfway up without hitting anything—miracle number one. To go any further though I had to hoist it completely over my head like Hercules to proceed. Then miracle number two took place. I got the ladder up the last steps and across the catwalk to my bedroom without so much as making a scratch on anything.
I couldn’t believe it. Finally I could fix the fan—and I did in less than ten minutes!
Puffed up with pride I don’t remember getting the ladder back into the garage. All that adrenaline had me feeling like Wonder Woman.
I wasn’t surprised when I found a penny. I’d already been thinking about how in other areas of my life all it takes is one small obstacle and I will avoid a task like the plague. Then when I found a fake penny I knew that I’d hit the nail on the head. The fake penny was much larger than the real one.
With this I was reminded that the battle in my head is usually blown totally out of proportion and often has nothing to do with reality. Instead, it’s a combination of bad memories, subconscious fears, and protective instincts all firing at once screaming this is a mountain not a molehill.
Others might argue it’s the enemy of my soul and I wouldn’t argue with them. It very well could be. He’s famous for distorting the picture. Even though he has no actual power to control my thinking beyond what I give him, I often offer plenty to work with. My mind, as steeped as it is with God’s promises, is still a battlefield of doubt. Where I should think I can I often think I can’t. It’s maddening.
What the fan, the ladder, the penny, and fake penny all reminded me is that if I just get a little momentum behind me by God’s grace I can actually overcome whatever is holding me back. Be it laziness, fatigue, anxiety or outright fear all that’s required is taking the stairs one step at a time in faith. I don’t have to leap I just have to step out and if it’s a good and worthy path I’ll get there. One step, one rung at a time, God will get me where He wants me without a scratch even if it means hoisting me over His shoulders.