My Mazda 323 and God’s Provision in Life’s Storms (John 6:15-21)

Do you ever find yourself frustrated with your car???  The best car I think I ever had was the first one.  It was a Mazda 323 and everything was manual.  This car only had the bare necessities.  It had four wheels, an engine, cushioned seats and a radio (no tape player).  I never had a problem with her (there was a point where I switched from calling the car “it” to “her” as a term of endearment) until one fateful night.

I was traveling home from college and did not leave until close to 10:00pm so the earliest I could be home was 3:00am.  Everything was going GREAT until about 12:30am when I noticed the battery light come on.  NOT GOOD!!!  At this point everything was running fine, but every time I looked at the dashboard that pesky little light would stare right back at me.  It was starting to make me mad until I noticed that my headlights were beginning to dim.  Now I finally realized that I should try to find an exit.  I had about 15 miles to a large truck stop.  Since they advertised “Home Cooking” I thought they (whoever they are) would be a good place to land at 1:00am. NOT QUITE!!!  Back to the road….as I am driving, the lights are going out FAST so I make a decision to shut them off.  Yes, I was on the interstate and I turned off my headlights.  Soon a trucker who I will never meet pulled up right behind me and acted as my headlights.  And only a few minutes later I see blue and red flashing lights in my rearview.  NOT GOOD!!!  I did my best to explain, but the officer still gave me a ticket.  Then he gave me a lift to the “Home Cooking”.

After waking my dad up and asking him to come and get me, I went over to the Café and met a few guys who were apparently trying to dry up a little.  They offered to give me a lift back to my car (I’ll save that story for another time).  In the end, we got the car home (yet another story) and then found out that it was simply a radiator hose that had burst.  The bad news is that since it had overheated it had warped the head gasket.  And the cost to fix it was more than my car was worth.  NOT GOOD!!!

The bright side of the story is that when we were looking for cars (I had $700 cash to spend) we found a dealer who heard the story. Since he didn’t have anything that cheap on his lot, he offered to look in the newspaper to find another car and he did.  He came with me to test drive it and helped me negotiate the price down to $700 (there is nothing like having a used car dealer on your side of the negotiations).  Then he took it and put new tires and brakes on it and detailed it at his expense.  I had never met him before, and since he was a used car dealer and honest, I still wonder if he was an angel.

After putting up with a few hassles (to put it lightly), I had a better car (this one had cup holders and a sunroof in addition to the four wheels, engine, cushioned seats and radio), a new friend and a lesson to last me for the rest of my life.  When I was on the highway, in a broken down car, getting a ticket from the officer, I could not imagine any good coming out of the situation.  After 12 years, it is still one of my favorite stories to illustrate how God will take care of our needs.

This Sunday, we will take a close look at the miracle on the Sea of Galilee when Jesus walked on water and calmed the storm.  You probably don’t have to think too hard to recall a storm in your life…in fact you may be going through one right now.  There is a clear message of comfort and hope that will build your faith in John 6:15-21.  I hope you will be able to join the other New Lifers for our service on Sunday at 10:45am.  In the meantime, make sure your radiator hoses are all in good working condition.

Have a great weekend!



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