By Sandy Jones
First things first. Did you know that Christian Living Magazine has been around for 9 years? That’s right, we published our first issue ever in July/August 2013. This is our 9th Anniversary Edition! We have many reasons to count our blessings and celebrate – for a niche magazine to make it past five years is something, and to be on the downhill side to 10 years is nothing short of a miracle. We give God the glory, and want to thank all of our readers, advertisers, and donors who make this ministry possible!
Recently my hubby Steve and I flew out to celebrate our beloved twincesses’ first birthday and were gone for six days. On the morning of the sixth day, Steve flew to Texas and I flew home, both returning to work.
The next morning I got up with all the things you have to take care of after having been gone for six days, and to prep for a 10 a.m. meeting with two pastors at our church.
Suddenly I realized that I’d futzed around so long that I had to leave to make it to church for my meeting. I grabbed everything, ran out and jumped in my car only to discover the battery was dead.
I went and asked the mechanic next door if he’d bring his portable unit and come jump start my car for me. He did, and I was off. I quickly called one of the pastors and explained that I’d had car trouble and would be about 10 minutes late. All in all I felt pretty good about everything.
Just over 3 miles from home my car died. In the left lane of a 5-lane road. My battery was so low I couldn’t even get my emergency flashers to work. There I sat, in the left lane, completely broke down, with no emergency flashers. Sigh.
I quickly dialed 911 and asked the dispatcher to please send an officer to come sit behind me with his flashing lights until help arrived. I’m not going to lie – sitting there in the left lane in very heavy traffic was the worst part of the entire experience. I was completely vulnerable.
I was grateful for the lady who pulled up behind me in her big lifted truck and offered to help me push the car out of the way, as well as the plumber who stopped from the other direction with the same offer. They were both a blessing. Sadly my car is new enough that if the battery is dead you can’t get it out of park. So there I sat, waiting for a police officer, and the mechanic from next door.
All’s well that ends well. The officer was gracious and my mechanic showed up as quickly as he could, with the traffic jam I had created behind me. We got the car started and my mechanic followed me home to be sure I made it, putting a battery charger on before leaving for his shop. While hooking up the charger he warned me that the battery may be too far gone; something had been left on the entire six days we were gone; we may have to replace the battery. He suggested I put a call in to the dealership where we got the car for any words of wisdom they might have.
Soon I was on the phone with “Chris,” one of the dealer’s service writers, who assured me that the warranty on the car would tow the car in, if need be, and if the battery was indeed completely gone, the warranty would also cover that.
As things settled down, I stopped to thank God for the answered prayers that morning, for protecting me from getting hit, for sending those two angels in disguise to give me hope in those scary moments, for the police officer who came to protect me, and our mechanic friend who got the car up and running again so I could get back home. I realized how much this whole incident reminded me of God’s love and compassion for us.
Clearly I run hard. I arrived home one evening, got up and worked until it was time to run out the door the next morning, and jumped in the car fully expecting to push the ignition button and have it carry me to my appointment. I had to ask myself if I’ve been taking my relationship with God as much for granted as I have been my car.
The evening before I had casually thanked God for safe travels for both my hubby and me before falling into a Dramamine induced coma for the night.
Getting up the next morning, it had once again been a quick “Good Morning Lord,” while I reminded myself “scripture before the morning news,” then rushed through one quick scripture reading so I could see how the primary voting had turned out.
Listened to a Bible study segment while I did my makeup, and sang His praises with my current playlist while I did my hair.
A quick stop in the office to pay a bill, prepare a couple of new subscriptions to drop in the mail, and check messages before the mad dash out the door.
Similar to the warranty on my car, God always has my back. Also like the car warranty God has paid the price for me. I had to ask myself – ‘And I thank him by being so casual about my relationship with Him?’
I was reminded that aside from me inviting Jesus into my heart, there was nothing I could do; unlike my car warranty, there’s no price I could pay – God’s already taken care of it all through the sacrifice of His precious Son.
If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. – Romans 10:9-10 NIV
Just to be clear – this one episode of my life is not indicative of my entire relationship with the Lord. While I do have periods of deep prayer time to just sit in His Presence, I must be honest that more often than I’d like to admit I’m far too casual in my conversations with Him, failing to remember that I am speaking to, and in the presence of, God Almighty. I continue to be a work in progress – often reminding myself of the old adage – ‘I’m not where I want to be, but thank Jesus I’m not where I used to be.’
I pray dear reader that you’ve taken the step to invite Jesus to live in your heart; that you’ve got an “Eternal Warranty Plan,” fully bought and paid for by our Savior’s blood. If you haven’t and would like to, please feel free to reach out to me. Jesus has been a wonderful Friend to me, and I’d love to introduce you to Him.
Until next time…
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