Saturday, December 22, 2012

On Stepping Back

“The Pilot’s transmission is out, it’s going to cost $5k to repair it.  The Accord is leaking radiator fluid, mechanic says all the hoses need replacing, it’s going to cost $400.  The kids are totally without transportation, but Pastor Ron sent out an email asking for help…”  I announced to my husband Jim after talking to my daughter.    I knew what I was going to do about it; now to just get him buy into what I wanted to do about it.
“What are we going to do about it?”
“We wait,”  he says. 
So, while HE waits, I pray.  I tell God, “Lord, we have four vehicles in our driveway, and two and a half drivers.  It’s really a no-brainer, but he needs to hear it from you.”
The next day, I asked him to call our daughter Jennifer, knowing that when he hears her voice, God will use it to whisper to him, “Let them use the silver car.”
“What’s new?”  I ask.
“Pilot’s getting towed back to their house, Accord is at the mechanics but will be back at their house shortly.  Email’s been sent out asking for help.”
By this time, my patience was starting to run out.  Why should the pastor have to send out email asking people to loan a car to perfect strangers (O.K., so church members aren’t exactly perfect strangers, but they may as well be, compared to immediate family) when we have a perfectly working car sitting unused in the garage? 
So, as gently as I could, I ask, “Why should Ron have to solicit help from church members when we have a perfectly working car sitting unused in the garage?”  He just looks at me, and then wordlessly gets out of the car to get some milk, while I wait in the car stewing.
While I stew, I talk to God.  Conversation goes like this:

Lord, You’re going to have to talk some sense into him.
Try again.
Lord, he’s not listening to you.
Not even close.
What... I’m [emphasis on I’m] not listening to You?
Now, you’re talkin’.
So you’re saying I’m the one with the problem of not listening to You? I’m the one who’s been praying and talking to you from the start?
That’s the problem.  YOU’ve been doing all the talking.

Then it hit me.  I’d been doing all the talking, telling God what to do, what to say, when to say it.  I wanted US – Jim and me – to be the heroes, to be the good guys, the ones to save the day for our kids.  That was our job – or so, I thought, until God gently reminded me that is HIS job. 
Good thing He knows me and knows that eventually, I’d come around, sometimes quick enough to where no one has to get hurt.  So my prayer changed.  I thanked Him for keeping my mouth closed, for keeping me from doing what I wanted to do.  I thanked Him for keeping Jim from doing what Jim wanted to do.  Then I asked Him to help me trust Him – to trust that He is doing something bigger than providing the kids with a means to get around town.
This morning we received word that a couple from the church answered the help call.  They had just bought a brand new car, and had a much older one just sitting in their garage.  They decided to drive the older car and loan the new one to the kids.

The loaned car is a 2012 Ford Focus.


  1. Hope I've made your day. I know what it's like when I look at my blog and I know people have visited but there is no comment, good or bad. So my comment is:
    Love this site! Keep blogging and I'll keep visiting.

  2. Thanks,Rayve-- you made my day :-). I keep forgetting I have this blogspot...


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