An angel came by the other day to keep us from having a dangerous highway accident. An angel you ask, well not exactly—a very observant and thoughtful person.
We were enjoying a day trip to a wonderful farmers’ market in the Amish country of Southern Ontario. As we left, I noted a factory outlet mall where we stopped to shop. Mary Helen took some of our purchases to the car and spent a few minutes relaxing. At that very moment a couple walking by our car stopped, he tapped on the window, and asked Mary Helen if she would mind them pointing out something.
The man showed her a tiny bulge on our left rear tire and warned her about the danger of a blowout while driving on the highway. Wow! She thanked them profusely and when I returned she showed me the bulge.
Among all the scuffs and marks on the wall of the tire, I would have never noticed it. We drove home very carefully avoiding the main highway by using smaller roads through wonderful farmland. The next day I took the car to a service station where the mechanic examined the tire and pronounced it unrepairable. Although he didn’t have a replacement in stock, he was providentially able to secure one quickly from the warehouse even though it was a holiday weekend.
We are so thankful for the thoughtful man who pointed out the problem. Was it just a coincidence that he and his wife were walking by our car—at that moment? Was it a coincidence that we parked where we did? Was it a coincidence that Mary Helen took purchase back to the car at that specific time? Was it a coincidence that a man who could recognize a dangerous tire condition would see what to me looked like an insignificant mark on the tire? Was it a coincidence that the special tire needed was found on a holiday weekend?
No, this whole episode is one more example of God’s providential care. “My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.…He who watches over you will not slumber;…The Lord will keep you from all harm—he will watch over your life; the Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore”(Psalm 121:2,3,7,8).
Throughout our lives there have been hundreds, even thousands upon thousands of so-called coincidences that were really evidences of God’s providential care. Many of them we have not recognized.
Of course, events don’t always turn out in ways that seem good to us. Bad things happen too. And recently we have been somewhat overwhelmed by health challenges. This incident reminds us that God cares for us and watches over us and will overrule all apparently difficult things for our good and His glory. He does this to all who become his children through putting their faith in Jesus, his son.
Romans 8:28, as we were reminded recently by a wonderful sermon, doesn’t mean that nothing difficult or bad will ever happen to us. “We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him who have been called according to his purpose”(Rom. 8:28). In some inscrutable way all the things that happen to us, good or bad, God will work into his plan for us so we become conformed into the likeness of his son [vs 29]. That process will ultimately both glorify God and bless us.
We’ve got a long way to go to become like Christ. How God overrules everything for our good and his glory is beyond our understanding and responsibility. But as he reminded us in this incident, he loves us and he will take care of us.
What should we do then? “Cast all your anxiety [cares] on him because he cares for you”(1 Peter5:7).
[For descriptions of books by Eric E Wright, including Down a Country Road, a book of inspirational readings through the year, visit: http://www.countrywindow.ca )