Baby, It's Cold Outside
Baby, It's Cold Outside
Dottie Morgan has no desire to share her home – or her heart – over Christmas. After all, her Christmas spirit froze over when Dottie lost her son in World War 2. But when a blizzard of the decade traps Dottie in her home with four near strangers, she just might discover that opening her door just might open her heart a Christmas miracle…and a new reason celebrate Christmas.
Behind the Pages:
The idea of a book that took place in a Storm House simmered in my mind for the better part of two years. I came upon the concept while walking with an older friend in our small town. She pointed out an old house on the corner, one that looked like it might have grown there, with the weeds around the porch, the overgrown maple in the front yard and said, “That was my Storm House.”
She then went on to explain that, back in the day when she attended school in our town, she lived an hour away, out in the woods. For her, and other children who lived out of town, they were assigned a Storm House – a place to escape to in the storm. Apparently, families signed up to act as Storm House hosts and at the beginning of the school year, the school educated children on where to go. I’ve also heard storyteller Garrison Keillor talk about Storm Houses in one of his monologues, and when I mentioned the concept to my parents, who hailed from South Dakota, they knew exactly what I meant. I have a hunch this concept might be something particular to the snowy regions of the world.
The notion intrigued me. My friend said she made up stories, as a child, of escaping to her storm house in time of need, of the family she might find there, of being fed hot cocoa and cookies. It made her feel safe, even if she never needed it.
I wanted to write a story about this Storm House, about how four “strangers” might find healing and comfort, but also how being trapped might churn up old secrets and hurts. What if two of the characters were estranged, but had once loved each other. And what if, inside Storm House, a miracle happened?
It did for me, as I wrote, because suddenly the spiritual theme began to take place. When I wrote this line, “I don’t celebrate Christmas anymore…There’s nothing left in it for me.” And answered with, “Except, of course, Jesus,” I simply stared at that, letting it sink it. Jesus is the only reason we can celebrate anything. The only reason for Hope. Without Him, life blindsides us, traps us, steals our joy. We become Dottie.
Jesus is our Storm House. Our safe place. Inside his arms, we find family, comfort, and hope, and the courage to face our secrets and discover forgiveness. He gives us that place of peace inside the storm.
Is your world “cold outside?” Maybe you need a Storm House. A place of safety, comfort, a place to feel Hope again. I invite you to find Jesus. He is enough. He is, in fact, the answer to everything.
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