God’s Provisional Surprises

“I didn’t need one more thing to worry about.”

I actually caught myself saying that after our bus broke down in Iowa.

It started Friday night as we were heading out for dinner to celebrate Margary’s birthday. The bus felt like the tire was flat so we pulled over to look at it. Over half the lug nuts had broken off on one of the rear tires (see pic below).

AAA wasn’t going to tow it. Not a standard vehicle they said. I was able to get them to see the light and they sent out a tow truck to take it to a shop that was open on Saturdays to get fixed, which hopefully was going to get us home. We had friends at the same conference who were able to shuttle folks back to the hotel and we got takeout and picked up Margary’s cake and still had a wonderful celebration albeit crammed into a hotel suite.

God was good to us. The wheel could have fallen off before we’d stopped. We could have been hurt. We could have had to rush around finding someone to shuttle people back to the hotel but had friends following us to dinner.

When the bus was fixed on Saturday we made it 30 miles up the road before it was having problems. We pulled off, after driving on the shoulder for a few miles at 10MPH, in Colfax Iowa. I knew I needed to be back in the office and that my family didn’t need to be spending more time in hotels and so we had decisions to make. Thankfully again we were able to get a friend who hadn’t left Des Moines yet to rent a car and bring it to us and another friend take two people home when passing through so the rest of us could fit into the rental. An added expense, but not much more than two more nights in a hotel would be to hope it was fixed Monday.

So we fedexed a key and got the bus towed and then the next phase of this special providence happened: it’ll cost more to fix the bus than it’s worth. So before I left on vacation I mailed the title to the mechanic in Des Moines so that the bus can be hauled off for scrap, and we’re starting over on a vehicle with nothing to show for the previous one. It’s a hard thing to adjust to, but God has been with us every step of the way.

God knows what you and I need better than we do. Like a good coach He pushes us beyond our comfort zones because we need to learn to trust Him more. The oft-repeated lie is that God will never give you more than you can handle. It’s not true. God always gives you more than you can handle on your own. He just doesn’t leave you alone in that…He wants you to depend on Him. And He always knows and does what’s best.

We have a vehicle to borrow indefinitely while we figure out what we’re doing for a new vehicle. We have some savings that gives us better options than if we didn’t. I have a work-provided vehicle so I haven’t had any interruption in the freedom to get to the office and back when needed. All of these details are a part of the plan, too.

So when you’re tempted to say “I don’t need one more ______”, stop. You actually may. God knows that, and He loves you and wants what’s best for you…which means trusting Him in everything.

I’ll let you know what new vehicle we get when we figure it out!

First pic here has the tow truck drivers taking a picture of the bus, the biggest thing they’d ever put on the back of the truck:

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