So my car stalled out in one of the busiest highways during one afternoon this week. The check engine and battery lights were both on. A sign of trouble. Now what? I thought. Don’t panic.
I calmly let the Inner Voice guide me. Try restarting the car. Good idea. It worked! And though I stalled out at the next light, I was able to restart the car again and pull straightaway into the corner gas station.
Phew. I’d escaped being stuck on a busy stretch of road. But at the gas station, would I be at the mercy of their service men? Could I trust them? How should I proceed? The Inner Voice spoke again: Call your mechanic.
I did, and over the phone, quickly learned that my mechanic knew one of the guys working at the very shop at which I’d landed! He spoke with him over the phone. Connection made.
The now-befriended fellow took a look at my car and delivered the news: it had overheated. My radiator wore a crack whose opening had allowed a spew of antifreeze onto the inside of my hood. Apparently, the hundred degree weather hadn’t been too friendly to it.
Fear and panic threatened to discourage me, trying to close in with the suffocating heat of the day. How much would a radiator cost? What if something else was wrong? I tried to sense the best way to proceed, and stay calm rather than give in to temptation.
The mechanic advised towing, estimating a fee of $60. Money I did not have for such a purpose. The Inner Voice came again, Call your dad. How would that help? Could he tow my car and save me the cash? Not knowing what the call would yield, but wanting to avoid rash decisions, I dialed him, rather than commit immediately to the towing plan. Talking to him yielded an idea worth all the cash in towing. “Does towing come with your auto insurance plan?” he asked. Hmmm…hadn’t thought of that. Wasn’t sure.
I called the insurance…they covered towing! Problem solved.
Now what? Unexpected circumstances and quick decisions had been coming at me so rapidly. Despair tempted to draw me into all the bad aspects of this situation, and make me fear future outcomes. I now had towing, but…how much would it cost to fix my car? Where would that money come from? Who should I call about borrowing a car? All the what if’s tried to seep into my mind.
Sitting on a plastic storage bench under a low-hanging shelf of over the counter medicines, I pressed pause.
Closing my eyes I let things just be, deciding to trust God rather than move into fear. He doesn’t require us to worry about tomorrow. Nor for that matter, the next minute! We are not to be anxious about anything! I noticed my breathing. Normal, not frenetic. This was true peace. Not that everything in life was always perfect, but experiencing the Presence of my God in this place changed everything!
Amidst the pause, my phone rang. It was a friend I’d called soon after the first stall of my car – she confirmed she had an extra vehicle available for my use, and could pick me up at the shop. (You never know what might come to you when you take a moment to pause….)
The Big Mack truck showed up soon thereafter – a truck emblazoned with the words: “Towing & Recovery.”
But by this time, I was smiling…no longer threatened by the fears that could’ve been mine. Not because of the recovery the tow truck man was bringing, but because I already found the Source of recovery while perched upon that make-do bench inside the filling station.