Friday, March 28, 2008

The Diesel Miracle

Last week, a kid smashed into the back of my parked car while I slept unaware in my parent's basement. As it turns out, he tried driving without defrosting his windshield first. What could have been last week's disaster turned into today's fist-pumping and high-fiving.

My parents asked me what kind of car I wanted to get with the insurance money. I said, "It'd be nice to have a station wagon. Maybe a diesel and a stick-shift." But Michigan has the worst economy in the country. Alaska beats Michigan. People living on government stipends have it better than most people in Michigan. The odds of a diesel stick-shift for sale in our budget didn't give me much hope. Two days ago, I asked God where I should look for a new car. He said, "Look online with dad. I'll direct you and you'll know."

Yesterday, dad and I spent hours looking for cars online. I looked for cars within fifty miles of my parents' place in Michigan, my house in Nashville, and my brother in Texas. There were lots of cars, and none of them worth buying. I decided to search one more website. One car stood out above the others. A 1983 Volkswagon Quantum station wagon, turbo diesel, and a five speed stick-shift. And it was five hundred dollars under an already small budget. I called the owner and asked if the car was still available. "There's a guy coming to look at it tomorrow morning at eleven."
"If that guy isn't interested," I said, "give me a call."
My family and I prayed, "God, if this is the car you had in mind for me, then make a way for me to get it."

Around eleven-thirty this morning, God prompted me to call the VW owner again. The other prospective buyer hadn't arrived and wouldn't be able to look at the car until the afternoon. He said I could come over right away to have a look first. As dad and I pulled into the guy's driveway, I noticed a mural airbrushed on the hood displaying an RV on a lawn under an oak tree. The owner, a mechanic, had only owned the car for two years. The previous owner bought the car to tow behind his RV on summer vacations, which explained the mural. It also explained the 86,000 miles (most of which were tow-miles) and the perfect condition of the body. All through the test drive, dad kept saying, "you've got to be kidding! This car is awesome!" He couldn't write the check fast enough, and I couldn't sign the title fast enough.

When I wrote about the accident last week, I wanted to see what God had in store. Little did I know that I'd end up with the coolest, campiest car in Michigan. And it was everything I wanted. Now all I need to do is learn how to drive stick.

Booyah achieved, friends.


Heath Countryman said...

Wow... that is very curious... You think God actually has a specific car in mind for us? Seems a little overkill on the soverignty side of things... How about socks and underwear? :-)

Isaiah Kallman said...

Let me ask you this: Do you think God is able to bless you and provide for you even at the level of socks and underwear? If you don't think so, then your god isn't very powerful. Hell, sounds like he's neutered and you've got him leashed in the backyard.

Do you think that God loves you and cares about every aspect of your life? If not, then your god isn't very good and isn't interested in a relationship with his creation.

One more question: How big is God to you? and subquestion, is it possible for your idea of god to be an idol getting in the way of the infinite God of the universe?

Heath Countryman said...

Sheesh, didn't you see the smiley face?

Let me answer your questions specifically and in order.

Big, and

Now perhaps you would do me the same courtesy. Maybe then we could have a conversation that might be a bit interesting. My question was, "You think God actually has a specific car in mind for us?" I am assuming from your original post that the answer is yes. But as I reread it, perhaps you would say no.

What is most interesting to me is the prayer you prayed. "God if this is the car you had in mind for me, then make a way for me to get it."

Do you think God has a specific car in mind for us, or is this an area where God allows us to exercise our choice in the matter and is satisfied with the choice we make as long as it does not violate the law of love (perhaps by overextending ourselves fiancially at the cost of our family, etc.)

Isaiah Kallman said...

Heath, the great danger of internet conversation is not hearing a person's tone of voice. I knew you weren't attacking me, and I hope you understand that I was not attacking you. I didn't create this weblog to pick fights or anything. I write about what God has done in my life and what I have learned about Him. But maybe I should use emoticons next time to play it safe. :-)

I do believe that we can limit God's ability to bless us by our decisions. At the end of Matthew 13, the word says that Jesus did not do many miracles in his hometown because of the people's unbelief. It doesn't say that Jesus couldn't perform those miracles, but the people had already decided that they didn't believe he was Messiah. So in a sense, they told God "no" with their lack of trust and rejection of Jesus. And God listened. Did God want to heal the sick there? Free people from demonic oppression? Lame walking? Blind seeing? Well, that's one of the reasons Jesus came around. But the people made a decision, and God had to honor that.

Now in my case, I believe that God could have given me a new car for free. But I asked for an old manual transmission diesel station wagon, and that's what He gave me. And I'm not sad about my decision. My new car kicks ass. However, the best part about the story is not my sweet ride. The best part is where God is glorified. Look at His provision! So I don't think He's disappointed in my decision either.

I read about your Sunday. I've been praying for you today. I prayed that God would move mightily in your life, and that the Holy Spirit would guide you into all truth as you lead others.

Heath Countryman said...

ty for your prayers... they are much appriciated.