Is God trying to get my attention or what?
I am a confident driver, especially in the winter time. I respect the ice and snow, but I am not afraid of it. Where others avoid certain roads, I look forward to the challenge that the slippery white stuff that hasn't yet been cleared away will bring.
And what has my bravery gotten me? For one thing, a squeaky-clean driving record!
I must admit that I've reached the point that I've become a little bit proud of my good driving skills. Whenever the weather is iffy and a trip needs to be made, I say, "Don’t worry! We’ll be fine! I'll drive!" In fact, I figure that the secret to safe winter driving is a little bit aggressiveness combined with a lot of guts!
This attitude has served me well in this, the snowiest year in at least ten.
Or at least that what I thought...
My 14 year-old and I were headed to youth. I opted to use the shortest--and snowiest!--road. Like so many country roads, this one was only clear down the middle. Not a problem, as long as there weren't any oncoming cars! There is a short section of this road where the prevailing wind always causes snow to drift onto the road, hiding even the clear section down the middle. Naturally, this part requires a bit more care, and just as we arrived, a car appeared, headed straight for--Me!
I put on the brake, but instead of slowing down in the deep snow, I drifted to the right--out of the path of the approaching car--straight into the much deeper snow on the side of the road! By the time we finally came to a stop, the snow was above my fender.
My son forced the car door open through the snow and got out to push, but it was no use. We were in too deep. Unbeknownst to me, he began praying for someone to come by and help us, and about five minutes later a four-wheel drive appeared out of nowhere. He stopped abreast my car and informed me that he was carrying a tow rope. He had us out of the drift in less time than it takes to tell the story, and many thanks later, we were on our way. When we looked back over our shoulders however, for one final glimpse at our human "angel", his truck was nowhere to be seen.
Had it been a real angel? Only God knows, but there was no question in our minds that it had been a miracle.
This should have been enough to get my attention, but it wasn't. I drove on to the youth program without a single change in my driving habits, and my cocky attitude for driving was still firmly in place the next day as I was driving home from the grocery store.
I was on a main road this time, and it was well cleared. As I topped a tiny hill, I noticed a car pulling out into the road not 30 feet in front of me. She must have seen me the same time I saw her, for she stopped. Right in the middle of the road.
Naturally, I put on my brakes. What I didn't realize however, was that the road was a little bit icy. Not icy enough to have given me problems driving, but icy enough to make stopping a bit hazardous. I slipped and slid down that little incline, and I didn't come to a complete stop until my front right fender had planted itself in the middle of her left front fender.
So much for my squeaky clean driving record!
God be praised, there wasn't a single scratch on either car. By the time the noses of our cars actually touched, I must have been going under the bumper limit. Praise God!
As I thought about these two miracles, and how they could have turned out so much worse, I began to realize that God was trying to get my attention. He was lovingly working to show me that although His hand of protection was upon me, I also needed to do my part! I needed to take more care when driving in winter conditions!
And perhaps, just maybe, I also needed to be a little less cocky about my winter driving skills!
As I drove on home, I began praising God for yet another reason: When these little "reminders" came along, the ones who had been admonishing me to be more careful while driving in the winter were not with me! I had learned my lesson, but God was allowing it to be a "private" lesson. I would never have to admit to anyone that I had been wrong all along! Yes!
But keeping the incidents to myself also meant keeping the miracles to myself. That wasn't right. God's miracles need to be shouted to the world. And maybe, just maybe, part of my humility lesson included admitting I had been wrong... Ouch!
I'm ashamed to admit that I struggled with this one for awhile, but in the end, I did "confess" what had happened to the ones who had been admonishing me to be less prideful and more careful while driving in the winter. That knocked me off my pride tower faster than anything else possibly could! But it also made me realize that throughout all of this, God wasn't just trying to help me drive more safely. His plan included something far more important: He wanted me to develop a spirit of humility. He wanted me to understand that "When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom." (Prov 11:2 NIV)
The next time you are feeling a bit proud about your abilities or accomplishments, Remember: "Pride goes before destruction, And a haughty spirit before a fall." (Prov 16:18 NIV).
In His love,
Lyn Chaffart, Speech-Language Pathologist, mother of two teens, Author and Moderator for The Nugget, a tri-weekly internet newsletter, and Scriptural Nuggets, a website devoted to Christian devotionals and inspirational poems, with Answers2Prayer Ministries.