Sunday, September 11, 2011

Back to Writing (and other stuff)

Today was the first meeting of the 2011-12 session for the Ozarks Chapter of American Christian Writers. It was great to see friends that I hadn't seen since April (I missed the May meeting) and to greet our new guests.  Our group continues to grow and I am always amazed and inspired by the knowledge, experience and talent in our group.

If you are a Christian and a writer, I would encourage you to visit us and see if we can be of help or encouragement to you.


I have had an ... interesting week. I could say that it was a week from hell, but there were too many good things mixed in with the frustration to fit that description well.  The really fun stuff began on Wednesday afternoon as I made way way to Holden, MO for a magic show to kick-off their AWANA program for the year.  Somewhere around the halfway point, my car started to overheat.  When I noticed the temperature rising I began to look for a place to pull over and check it out.  By the time I got to an exit, the temp started to come back down.  I assumed that the thermostat was stuck but then opened up.  I pulled over anyway and made certain that there was plenty of coolant.  Once back on the road, everything seemed to be okay ...

Except...apparently the thermostat was back in the closed position and stuck again and the temperature started climbing again.  Sure enough, it eventually opened and the temp came back down.  It was running a little hotter than usual but holding steady ... for a while.

I could bore you with the details of the adventure but I won't. Eventually the thermostat locked in the closed position and the temperature redlined. Of course, at that point I was on a two lane highway with no shoulder and no place to pull over. I found a small drive and managed to pull over.  As an added bonus, I had no cell phone coverage.  The drive led up to a new home that was under construction. Workers had left for the day. There was no power and so there was no water. However, the site was high enough that I managed two calls: one to the church to have somebody come pick me up, and one to Chris so that she could start the 2 1/2 hour drive to pick me up and take me home after the program. She was not happy about this.

Across the highway was a mobile home that was set back a little ways. I made way over there to see if I could get some water while I waited for my ride (it would be 20 minutes or so).  I guess if you're going to break down on the road, it's a good thing to break down in front of a mechanic's home.  Mike (the mechanic) came over and confirmed what I suspected.  He took the thermostat out and tried to get things back together without out it (a temporary fix) but it wouldn't seal tight and I would have to leave my car.

Mike told me I could leave my car in his yard until I could make arrangements to come and get it.  I told him that it would probably be Friday since I had a day/mid ahead of me on Thursday.  He had me leave the hood unlatched and the repairs were finished when I arrived on Friday! Nice guy, eh?

I had a couple of offers to drive me up there on Friday but ended up going with a friend from church. We had a nice chat on the way up and also had some time to talk to Mike about his relationship with God when we arrived.  We prayed with Mike, finished up a few minor repairs and drove home without further incident.  It doesn't appear that the head is cracked or anything like that, but the engine is definitely in need off some work. (sigh)

Life happens ... and leaves us with stories to tell.  Maybe Mike just needed some encouragement and Gary and I got to be the vessels that God chose to use.   Perhaps a parent that needed to hear the gospel was at the church to pick up their child and heard a story that they would have missed if I had been on time.  Maybe it was the pastor that needed some encouragement as we talked over a late burger while waiting for Chris to come get me. Of course, it could just be that John was in need of a little humility and a reminder that our plans are not always God's plans.

I'm not a big fan of coincidence.  I believe that we are guided by a Great Power and the people that we meet are often appointments of a divine nature. Even thought the week has been a bit of a pain in the butt, I'm not really too upset by anything that happened.  There were a lot of stories that began this week.  I'm looking forward to finding out how they turn out.

What's your story?
Share it with somebody.

The clock has just passed midnight.
It is the eleventh of September, ten years after the vicious attacks on US soil.

John <><


Sicilian said...

Great story. . . . . brought tears to my eyes. It reminds me that we are very blessed in this country with more than money. . . . . we are blessed with a generous spirit and kind hearts. Mike didn't probably have a whole lot, but he gave what he did have. . . . water to a thirsty man and skills that were needed for the moment.

I'm blogging again too!

John said...

Glad to hear that you're back to blogging, Sicilian! I look forward to reading your posts.

Mike said...

'Life happens ... '