Of Tires, Ticks, and Trust

Interstate 5, at night, is one of the darkest, loneliest roads, especially back in 1980. It feels like there are no services open for 200 miles. We were moving from Southern California to the Bay Area. I was driving with the first heavy load in the trailer while my wife stayed home with our child. Steadily, I bored through the gloom. There were very few vehicles sharing my journey, and this was before cell phones. Suddenly, the car felt funny. It felt sluggish and I had to fight it pulling to one side.

I stopped to look, and found one of the trailer’s tires was flat. What was I going to do? I had not seen any services for hours. My spare tire only fit my car, not the trailer. I couldn’t call and there was no one to flag down. I contemplated unhitching the trailer, but it held most of our worldly goods. If I left it to find help, it might take me hours, and who knew if it would still be there. God drew my attention to a glow ahead of me on the road. I drove very slowly down the road toward the light.

After two miles, I drove down the off-ramp toward the light. Not only was it a service station, but it specialized in trucks, and my trailer took truck tires.  Not only that, but it had been close enough that I hadn’t damaged the rim. I left with a used tire that lasted for years. As I drove the rest of the way, I didn’t see any services for the next hundred miles. I had broken down at exactly the right spot.

Recently, I was reminded of this experience when I got some results back from the doctor. They said, “You were exposed to Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever sometime in the past.” I researched that. Untreated, this bacterial disease is fatal in 75% of the cases. Survivors have damage to their organs. The only way to get exposure and have antibodies to it is to have been bitten by an infected tick. How could I have had the disease, not know it, and not suffer any damage? Then I read that some people are bitten and never develop the disease, but they don’t know why. I sat there flabbergasted, truly dumbfounded. It blew me away.

I then asked myself, how often has God answered before I knew to pray. (Isaiah 65:24) Sometimes, such as this case, He lets us see years after the event, sometimes, we might never know, and sometimes immediately, as with the tire. Oh, how we need to learn to trust Him more. When He tells me to share what I have learned by studying the Bible, I get afraid. I think, “It disagrees with the popular teaching, they will reject me.” God responds, “I have taken care of you in so many ways, I will give you the power for this also.” Do you have fears that are stopping you from obeying God? Do you struggle with trusting God also? Let’s encourage each other to victory. (Heb 10:24)

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