Our Responses Matter – Part II

“…always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Ephesians 5:20 (NIV)


Last time I talked about how God showed me that our responses matter.  God is able to use everything we face because we live in a fallen world, bringing blessings from pain if we choose to keep Him front and center in our lives.

I spoke last fall about our new mechanic and how I believe God brought good out of car trouble in our family not once, but twice.  They became more than our mechanics right off the bat – sharing brownies, cookies and other baked goods as well as our payment for their services.

Last April found us back at the mechanic and with financial pressures that were not the fault of the mechanic, we were looking at a huge bill for what was originally assumed to be a minor problem.  My response should have been one of complete trust in God.  He has proven time and again that He has our finances, that He is Jehovah Jireh.  However, the timing for this faith lesson couldn’t have been more inopportune.


This particular Thursday morning in April was a day that I had planned for months.  It was the beginning of spring break for our oldest two (our youngest still had one more day) and while our oldest was busy at work and our youngest occupied in school – my daughter and I were going to go enjoy a mother/daughter day for her birthday.  We had the whole day planned.  Drop off the youngest at school, get a leisurely breakfast before heading to the salon, then maybe lunch before picking up the youngest and heading to my Bible study/walking group.  I had worked extra hours so that I could take the day off guilt free and just enjoy making memories with my only daughter.

We made memories all right.  As we drove away from dropping off our youngest, the oil light came on the car.  I knew enough about cars to know that wasn’t good and I better not drive it around town.  Did I mention it was pouring down rain too?  So I pulled over to the side of the road, called my husband and while getting soaked, checked the dipstick (thank you, Dad, for teaching me basic car survival).  It was low on oil, so I asked Bill what I should do and he suggested buying some oil and seeing if that would work.

Ten minutes later, I’m standing out in the pouring down rain, pouring oil into the right spot in the car and watching it flow out the bottom in a river of flood water almost as fast.  Again, I knew enough about cars to know that wasn’t what was supposed to happen.  A quick call to my in-laws to explain the situation gave us their car for the day, so our whole date wasn’t ruined.  I dropped our car off at their house, picked up their van and spent a fun day at the salon watching them work magic on her hair while I dried out.

At the end of the day, I called the mechanic because something was definitely wrong with the car.  He said I could bring it in the next day and he would do what he could to help us, hoping it was the lesser expensive of the two problems he suspected.

Come back next time as I finish explaining how my “less-than-stellar” response wasn’t God’s best and I’m still regretting it.

© Cheri Swalwell 2016


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