Tag: God’s provision

On Cars and Christ

This post over at Knowledge House Academy got me reminiscing.  I have had at least 6 auto situations where God has stepped in and taken care of us in amazing ways.  One especially comes to mind, a story I don’t think I have ever told here but strangely enough ties in very much to where we are now.

Rachel--Taken in the fall before this story occured.
Rachel--Taken in the fall before this story occurred.

It happened about 10 years ago around Christmas. I needed something at Walmart, about 5 minutes away and hopped in our tiny Doge Daytona taking Rachel with me.   When I headed  out the roads were fine and it was still light out.  I probably spent more time there than planned because when we left the store the temperature had dropped and the snow was blinding.  I knew how to drive in the snow so was not the least bit worried about the icy roads or the snow, I was concerned about my very sleepy baby and getting home before my husband began to worry.

Half way home, on a nice straight stretch with snow piled 3 feet high on either side just before a major hill, our front right tire blew out. We didn’t wreck but there was no place to pull off  and I had no cell phone.  I started praying desperately and pulled into the driveway of the only lighted house I could see.  In tears I knocked at the door of the tiny pink house with a white fence around it all the while praying that the person behind the door was not a murderer or pervert and  would be kind enough to let me use their phone and willing to let me wait inside with my very sleepy 1 year old while we waited for help to come (the temperature was 32 degrees and falling) .

Behind that door was the most wonderful, Christian couple.  Myself a new Christian freshly baptized after leaving the Roman Catholic church, I was amazed at this spiritually mature couple.  The wife took me in and fed me hot tea while I called my husband to let him know where I was. Her husband, who had recently had back surgery and was actually off work because he was still recovering went out in the snow and quickly dropping temperature to change my tire for me.  It took over an hour before he managed it.  While we waited inside she ooed and awed over my little one, chatted about their ministry to her son’s teenage friends and how they were currently home churching (shocking to my formerly Roman Catholic ears).  I tried to convince her to join us at the church we attended right next door (which we left not long after) and was surprised that they disagreed with how things were done there, which were the same things we later ended up leaving over. She told me about some ministries I had never heard of and encouraged me to read the Bible and pray and together with my husband  make decisions based on that, not on what ministries or our church told us.

They moved away not long after that, and then we moved as well, and I never ran into them again.  Yet that discussion with her while her husband changed my tire opened my eyes to what Christian maturity could look like, beautiful, kind, encouraging, and hospitable, unafraid of what the outside world and even fellow Christians think, willing to be exactly where and when God has you.  And  looking back know, I realize that that conversation planted the seeds for our journey into home churching.  It took us 8 years to get there but it is where God has us now and I believe He provided that unknown couple (I don’t remember their names or even what they looked like, just their little pink cottage with the white picket fence and the rather large dog) not only to help me on that cold , dark night when I needed help but also to show me another world, one which was beyond my imagining.  A place world where “not going to church” is not a sin which you have to do penance for but a time of growing and learning, a time of rooting deeper into His word.  A world where taking in a stranger is good and right and not a thing to be feared.  A world where ministry doesn’t have to involve a church building but instead the people God sends your way.

And it occurs to me now that it must have take in a lot of faith for them to open the door to a perfect stranger and her baby, to change the tire right after back surgery instead of calling a tow truck (which we could not have afforded), to sit and chat with this baby Christian with her preconceived notions of what Christians should look like.  And I just want to thank them by sharing this story with all of you, because I have no idea where they are or what they are doing and have no other way of sharing what a profound influence they had on me and my family.

The neighbors must think we are crazy or the story of a red couch

They are probably right.

Seven years ago God provided us with a gift–the perfect couch, the couch I had longed for price we could afford–even though it was not a suitable couch for our family at the time–a red jacquard camel back Harrod’s of London couch.  It was beautiful, and seven years of children being home all day, playing on it, jumping on it, leaping from it, and generally mistreating it–well those sevn years have not been kind to it.

It is still a beautiful couch mind you, it is just that the seat is looking rather forlorn, with stains and holes where the buttons have come undone, it has served us well but the time has come to get something more serviceable.  A household where everyone is home all day, all the time needs a couch that will hold up under duress. Plus I would like to be able to train my kids to treat a new couch with kindness instead of trying to break years of bad habits.

And so, yesterday, after beginning an impromptu yard sale the day before, Rachel and I prayerfully decided to move the couch to the front yard, hoping that someone else would fall in love with it.  This was a big leap of faith because the two burly men who originally moved the couch in took most of a day to figure out how to make it fit.  We prayed and thought and finally and suddenly I remembered exactly how to do it, an “Ah!” moment.  It went out easily at that point though we have no intention of moving it back in.  We would prefer to earn enough money from it to get a cheap replacement–something designed for a dorm room that I won’t feel guilty about kids playing on and which we can easily move around our awkward living room and easily replace, though at this point I am tempted to put it on freecycle and pray for a good home for it.

In the meantime our living room furniture sits on our front lawn, waiting and hoping, and our living room sits empty of seating.  It is a nice feeling not to have to move around furniture to walk through and it will be interesting to see what God has in mind–because if the two of us, an arthritic woman and a 10 year old, can move it outside without help (my husband’s back was out and my dad showed up exactly as we got it outside and just in tinme to help put the door back on) then God MUST have a plan for it.  And we are enjoying the empty space in our living room.

Finding Education in our Vacation: The drive

We are finally beginning to dig ourselves out of the mess and the icky cold thing we seem to have developed so I thought maybe I should share what happened on our trip.  As usual God was totally involved and I have lots of awesome pictures to boot.

Our trip was divided into 4 parts–two visits with one set of friends, one visit with bloggy friends, and a trip to OC, Maryland.  To start we had a 5 hour drive to our friends’ place in Alexandria, VA.  The first few hours were totally uneventful.  We stopped at my grandma’s on the way through where she gifted us with a bit more money for the trip (we already had enough for the whole trip but God knew we would need more.)

Once we got back on the road we drove for several hours without stopping.  Then, just after taking a break at a rest stop we hit trouble.  Traffic was backed up for several miles for over an hour due to an accident.  At this point I gave the kids the camera so they could take pictures of the windmills above.  They then read books, listened to Lord of the Rings on the cd player, and played while we waited for traffic to start moving again.  I decided to save gas and turned the car off with just the blinkers on.  Bad move.  You may remember from previous stories of our poor little car that it has issues, especially with  the alternator belt and the battery dying.  Um, yeah.  Just as the traffic strted moving my battery died.  Now this time I remembered to bring my jump starter.  A nice trucker stopped and helped me get the car off the road then tried to help me jump the car.  No go–the kids had used the jump starter to pump up a giant floatie and I forgot to recharge it.  The kids and I started back to the service plaza asking all the stopped cars along the way if they had jumper cables–finally we found someone who did but didn’t know how to use them, then some others who were willing to help us use them.  Then a tow truck arrived–it seems that the helicopters who were flying over for he accident called in to say that there was a car blocking the road. After everyone made sure it would be all right they went on their way leaving the tow truck driver to help.  The car jumped no problem and the cost was EXACTLY how much my grandma had given us (the driver tried to get me to call around for someone with AAA but since I knew I didn’t know anyone with it and that I HAD the money–I knew God had provided it just for this, I didn’t fuss about it.

We made it the rest of the way with nary a problem.  The kids handled all of it wonderfully and loved seeing how God had provided for us, a wonderful lesson to learn early in life.