Sunday, April 17, 2016
Tow Trucks and Angels in Disguise-by Heidi McLaughlin
This particular morning was no different. As soon as my feet hit the floor I started my mental “to do” list. I wanted to get through this day as quickly and efficiently as possible so that I could get out of my office and onto the golf course for my 4:57 tee time. The sun was already blazing over the beautiful Okanagan valley and it made me gasp with joy. It was a perfect day for golfing.
As I drove up the familiar hill on Boucherie Road a warning registered in my brain. The black vehicle on the crest of the hill was no longer moving. My foot hit the brake; but it was too late. What followed was a crushing, ghastly sound of metal twisting and ripping. The deafening explosive sound of the deploying passenger air bag thundered through my little VW Passat, and I thought I was having a heart attack. My body flew forward and it hurled my chest into the steering wheel. In my confused state all I could see was smoke and white powder and I knew that some very bad had happened.
Once the pain in my chest subsided my first thought was, “Dag nab it I’m going to miss my golf game.” I was covered in coffee from head to toe and felt embarrassed as I stood alongside the fire truck, ambulance, police cars and tow trucks. My day was ruined. My car was totalled. My joy was gone. Not only that, but I had to watch people glare at me as they were stuck in this huge traffic jam.
Over the years I have made intentional efforts to be a thankful person. The Bible says: “Be joyful always. Pray continually. Give thanks in all circumstances, for this God’s will for you in Christ Jesus” (1 Thess. 5:16 NIV). God’s word has proven to me that my joy comes when I look God-ward and focus on all the good and beautiful gifts God gives to me every day…in all circumstances. But on the day of the accident, I found it hard to be thankful
Later that afternoon, once I stopped ruminating about the horrific explosion, an unusual thought came to mind. Heidi, maybe that vehicle you rear-ended saved someone’s life. The driver of the other vehicle stopped to let a child cross the road. If that SUV had not stopped for that little boy, would you have seen that child? What if you were so distracted that you had not seen him?
The thought that I might not have seen that little boy left me vulnerable and shaken. Then it dawned on me. Our human eyes cannot see or comprehend the fact that there is always a bigger narrative unfolding in and around us. In amongst the tow trucks there are miracles and angles all around us that we cannot see or understand. God is always at work unfolding a greater story.
That realization made me stop and remember that God says to “give thanks in ALL circumstances.” Now that I saw a bigger picture, I was so thankful that I sat and looked up to Heaven with tears streaming down my face saying, “Thank you God that you not only love me but you also care for every detail of my life. Help me to be thankful always, in spite of how I feel or how I perceive the situation. Thank you God that you are always with me. ”
In spite of your circumstances, what are at least 3 things you can be thankful for today?
Heidi McLaughlin lives in the beautiful vineyards of the Okanagan Valley in Kelowna, British Columbia. She is married to Pastor Jack and they have a wonderful, eclectic blended family of 5 children and 9 grandchildren. When Heidi is not working, she loves to curl up with a great book, or golf and laugh with her husband and special friends. You can reach her at: www.heartconnection.ca
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