Saturday, June 17, 2006

The Right Time and Place

God cares for every aspect of my life. It matters to Him when I am troubled or when things don’t go as they should. He loves to answer our prayers and work things out for our good. This does not mean that life is smooth sailing all the time, but it does mean that He is with us in our difficulty and will see us through it.

His faithfulness has been evident in my own life this week. God showed His power and foresight while dealing with a frustrating and irritating piece of equipment – my bicycle.

This bike is typically a source of enjoyment, but it is also a way to deliver newspapers. I use it almost daily; the brakes are engaged nearly 120 times each day (not including my own recreational biking).

With this style of riding a lot can go wrong very quickly. Brakes go out, gears break, tires go flat, ball bearings fall out and scatter, and the bike is eventually replaced. My last bicycle fell apart so quickly that I was displeased about getting a new one so soon. It was necessary, however, and I purchased my new bike.

There were only a few problems. The handlebars were attached backwards, and several other things did not seem to be right. Two of the four screws that secure the handlebars would not tighten. After a few adjustments we were satisfied that it could be ridden, and we left the screw problem for later.

Bad idea. The front screws fell out, and the back ones were put under extra strain. They loosened, and one of them became stripped. Only one screw was holding my handlebars up now, and it refused to stay tight.

It was at this moment that a bad situation appeared to get worse. My bike tipped over. Whatever gumption that little screw had left gave out.

Here I was at the half way point of a route that takes me an hour to complete, and my bike was broken down. I was behind schedule, and it was now inevitable that my customers would receive their newspapers late.

The fall of my bicycle caught the attention of a lady sitting on her porch swing across the road. She asked if everything was alright, and I explained my predicament. She assured me that her husband could fix it when he arrived home within the hour. It would take more than a little fix, but I thanked her, left my bike in front of their house, and ran to finish my route on foot.

After an exhausting finish I returned home and collapsed. I hardly considered what the woman had said about her husband fixing my bike. In my mind I was already planning a trip to the bicycle shop the next morning - no easy task since the shop is almost an hour away.

It got worse. A trip would be impossible until Saturday because of the odd summer hours of the repair shop. I could not walk my route all week.

Unknown to me, God had provided a plan that I could not have imagined. My customer was a mountain biker. He had the part I needed (the stem) and the knowledge and inclination to make the repair!

Some would say that it was all a coincidence. They could say it was chance that my bike happened to lose its last bit of competence in front of that particular house.

I think not.

Psalm 37:23 declares, “The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD: and he delighteth in his way.” It was the one house that could help me, and God made sure that there was someone outside to see my need and offer help. They became an instrument of the Lord.

I learned that…

…God provides the answer.
…I need to rest in Him.
…My bike is very important to my job!
…Always carry a water bottle. It was the only thing that kept me going as I ran my route.
…God will see that everything happens at the right time and place.
…God cares for every aspect of my life.


Alex Jordan Harris said...

A wonderful post, Elizabeth. Thanks for sharing that story!

Wholesome Works said...

Praise God. He turned a bad situation into a great blessing.

Thank you for the reminder that God provides.


the traveler said...

Thanks for sharing this personal story. It's a good reminder of God's goodness to His people.

Ednella said...

Wow! That's awesome!

Pastor Steve said...

God is so good! Not one sparrow (or girl) falls but what our loving Father sees and knows just what to do. You get an "A" in practical theology 101. You got it girl!

Keep writing!