I recently posted a blog about how an SUV fell on top of me while I was under it fixing things. If you do not want to read the whole thing, the forth from the last paragraph explains what a miracle it was that I walked away with only a swollen wrist:
“After examining the scene, I am certain that God was watching out for me. I still can’t figure out how I got my head out far enough so it was not pinned under the gas tank too. My right leg ended up in the wheel well, but did not got caught under the axle. The car shifted just far enough to catch the corner on the tire laying on the ground which kept the corner up just enough. My left leg was far enough over not get caught between the tire and the car. If the car had shifted about an inch less, it would have landed on my ribs instead of the soft part of my stomach. I am certain this would have broken them and imagine my breathing situation with the weight of the car directly on my lungs.”
I have spent a lot of time thankful to be walking and breathing–trying to piece together how the accident happened in spite of the care I took to support the car before working on it and how it did not end much worse. I have figured out the chain of events that sent the car over and am wiser for it, but I am still amazed that I am not more hurt or worse.
I have spent much of my recent prayer time thanking God and asking why I walked away? God’s answer to my heart has given me new focus and strength, “because I am not finished with you yet!”
If I had a second life verse after Isaiah 6:8, it would be Ephesians 2:10.
“For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God has prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.”
It is easy to become discouraged in life. I will never judge a missionary (or pastor) who packs up everything and walks away. I would be broken and pray for them to reconsider, but it is hard to live a life so deeply committed to selflessly loving people, only to have people despise you or approach you with selfish interests in mind.
You see the worst in people, but then there are those glorious moments when the saving power of Jesus Christ transforms someone’s life. It makes you forget all the challenges and troubles and you see that God’s promises are eternally true and you have the best life in the world. You are walking in the good works that God has prepared for you.
Then, if you are like me, the routine of life settles back in. You drudge forward struggling to hold on to why all the hardship is worth it. The office is a mess, reports are overdue, people only care about you for what they can get from you, and it is hard to turn it all off long enough to enjoy time with your spouse and family. It is easier to hide behind television or music or the internet or video games or more work or whatever it may be that drowns out life. (my guess is that this is not unique to missionary work)
Ultimately, we forget that God has created us for a unique purpose that is the most satisfying thing in the world. I was in that place before the car fell on me. Nothing was noticeably wrong, but I was in a season of living on my own. I was making up myself the good things that God wanted me to do, and maybe I was even getting some of it right.
We are called to consciously live the life that God created us for and not just to stumble through it. And, to live like we are entitled to the next good thing that we are to do is arrogance. God as divine Creator has the right to order our lives, but in His divine mercy He gives us the option to make our own choices.
Still, it is inescapable that when God still has a plan for your life, He will lead, guide, and protect you into fulfilling that plan. It is tragedy to be unaware of this. God taught me this truth as He was preparing me for the work He has for me in Kenya. Recently, He gave me a reminder in the form of a 2 and a half ton SUV.