Now that I have been on this earth for over 60 years, I have a bit of ground to look back at and survey how life has played out. Even so, the Lord still gives me reminders, those gentle memory jogs, that reminds that He loves me infinitely and has, at times, gone to great measures to keep me safe and on His road. Jesus has given reminders that He has something planned for me, something planned for my family as well that He has so generously entrusted me with. Reminders that I still have that note to play in Jesus’ grand symphony for my and the world’s salvation.
When driving home from a Pro Life event and listening to Al Kresta on the radio, he was interviewing a guest that was an author for several books about angels and spent several years speaking on the subject. Al asked her how she became interested in the topic to begin writing books about angels. The lady then recanted a story about her son making an ill-fated trek from the east coast to Chicago one winter years ago during a bad storm that hit the Midwest. The temperature was -30⁰F below zero and bad weather besides. His car broke down in rural northern Indiana with no one on the road. In their isolation and dire circumstances, especially with the extreme cold, they thought they may have lived their last day. Then out of nowhere, a tow truck shows up and takes them to safety, which she attributed to an unexplained circumstance, then hailing the tow truck inhabitants as being angels sent to save her son.
I was instantly brought back to an almost exact circumstance that happened back in the early 80’s when my wife, Cathy, and I were traveling home from her family’s home in Detroit. It could have been the same storm. This lady’s children were about 60 years old as she mentioned earlier on the show. Cathy and I were driving in the evening, heading down Interstate 69 just crossing into northern Indiana. The ambient temperature was at least -20⁰F below zero with a wind chill temperature of -40⁰F. We were fighting white out conditions with blowing and drifting snow. I was not aware, as this lady’s son was not as well, that the roads had been shut down due to the extreme weather.
Our car ran into a snow drift that went across the road. The rush or splash of snow up into the engine, plus the extreme cold ambient air, choked the engine and it stalled. I was not able to get the car started. Here we were, all alone in the extreme cold. I also had the same concern, as did this lady’s son, of how long we could last and how long would it take for another passerby to come upon us. This occurrence was before cell phones so we had no way of calling for help.
Just as the lady’s angel story, a tow truck appears out of nowhere and takes Cathy, myself, and our cat, Kitty, to the safety and warmth of a local hotel.
It is interesting to look back, then, at all the brushes with death that my guardian angel, working in conjunction with his boss’ (Jesus) orders, to keep me around and prepare me for things such as, maybe, writing my first book. It seems that Jesus has been trying to catch my attention and prepare me for something for the last 60 years. Added to the above story, there are a plethora stories of how my wife and I seemed to together survive some serious scrapes, for example:
Again, driving home from Detroit, we were passing a car on the interstate. When we were even with that car, its front, driver’s side wheel of that car came off and rolled in front of our car and past. We were, thankfully, able to pass the car before it swerved and deposited into a marshy ditch. All were OK.
Later, Cathy and I were vacationing at Yellowstone park. We were heading to see a waterfall. The road wound along this raging white water river downstream from the falls. Just to the right of this roadway, was the edge of a cliff that went several hundred feet straight down to the rocky riverbed. Throughout the park there were these sandy pull off spots, made by tourists over time, stopping to see some wonder in the park. Well, we came up to a bend in the road. We could hear the roar of this waterfall in the near distant. Due to the winding road, the waterfall’s view was obstructed. Anticipation was building as the roar built as we drew closer.
Coming to the point of that bend in the road, there was a sandy spot that looked like the same “tourist made” pull off for a scenic view of this waterfall. Cathy and I had the same mental thought of pulling off to see the majestic sight. I actually started to go straight, heading toward the sandy spot, then, at the last second, changed my mind to wait for a better spot. We then discovered the sandy spot was only about three feet wide, leading then to a shear drop down to the river. I still see that one in my sleep.
Next there was the house fire. To read that story, buy my first book, “I Have Come To Set The Earth On Fire”. To suffice, we were miraculously awakened at 2:00AM prior to the smoke detectors’ alarms sounding, and escaped, with only the clothes on our backs, unhurt, from our burning home.
A few months later, I was driving early in the morning heading north on Interstate 65 when a trucker, heading south, fell asleep at the wheel and crossed over the grass median, headed directly for me. Luckily the Lord woke the driver up and he was able to turn his truck at the last moment, narrowly missing my car.
So, wake up calls, why do we get them? Why did I get them? It was amazing that Cathy and I have survived and blessed with over 37 years of marriage together. It is a miracle that our four children were even born at all. The first three incidents above happened either when Cathy was pregnant with our first or before.
The key to today’s entry is the infinite love that God has for us. “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life.” Our story then extends to our children as well. Who is Jesus? Jesus is in the love that He has for us and our family. He is also in the love that Jesus has for the rest of His creation, the salvation of humankind. These stories showed that each member of my family was loved beyond anything that is humanly fathomable. They showed that Jesus so loves us, that each of us has a loving role to play in our own salvation as well as the salvation of others. These stories showed that our work here is not completed yet. I wonder what adventure Jesus has yet in mind for us. Amen.
 John 3:16