Reflections

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Have you ever had something physical in your life closely reflect what happening in the spiritual?  Kind of a crazy manifestation of your life?

A year ago, the Hubs bought me a lovely, not-brand-new luxury vehicle.  We were extremely blessed in getting it.  It was sold to us at the “family price” and I doubt we would have purchased it if not for that blessing.  I enjoy this SUV very much.  Every time I drive I feel that God and my husband love me…a lot.  The vehcle has been running great.  Having said that, I am not the best at vehicle maintenance.  To be honest…I am kind of a big picture girl and I like to leave the details to others.  In fact, I have a vision for what my house should look like and I really need someone to come over and take care of all the details (*put all our crap stuff where it is suppose to be).  I thought when I got married, my husband would love taking my vehicle to get the oil changed and put gas in it.  He doesn’t mind, but I have to let him know it’s due.  I admit, I have driven around with the oil light on, on my vehicle. Please, don’t tell my car-man, broth-in-law….he would be disappointed.

Right before Labor day weekend, Blue Bell restocked and the Hubs went out to buy ice cream. (YEAH!!) He took my vehicle and it was low on gas so he stopped to fill up.  After filling up, the vehicle wouldn’t start.  It had to be jump started.  The next day, I used it and it worked fine.  We were leaving on the Thursday before Labor day to go camping.  I mentioned to the Hubs maybe we should check the water in the battery.  (I am no expert on car maintenance or repair but I know that batteries need water).  He forgot to check it.

We left for our trip on Thursday evening, stopping in San Antonio for dinner.  When we came back out to the truck it wouldn’t start.  We had to get a jump.

I asked again about the water.  It was late (dark outside) so he decided to check it in the morning.

We stopped at walmart and bought some jumper cables.

Our trip was 7 hours from home.  We stopped for the night at a hotel.

The next morning, the vehicle wouldn’t start.  The Hubs checked the battery and it had very little water in it. We added water and got a jump start.  We were hoping the problem was solved.

Nope…we made one stop where we turned off the engine at a rest stop about an hour and a 1/2 from our destination.  We had to be jumped again and then our air suspension system went out, not all of it, just the rear suspension. What this means is, the system that keeps everyone in the vehicle from bouncing every time you hit a bump, went out.  We felt every little bump.   The kids loved it.  It was great fun.  We stopped at an Autozone to have them check our battery and starter.  They found nothing wrong.  The electrical system was “good”.

We went on our way. After all, the computer said we were good.

When we got to our camp site, my dad and brother-in-law checked it out and decided we needed a new battery.

My dad bought us a new battery (the plan was to pay him back…when they went into town, the Hubs didn’t have his wallet.  (This detail will be important later).

They men replaced the battery and the vehicle started fine.  But the rear suspension was still out.

On our way back we stopped at Autozone again to have the air suspension system checked.  Their computers could find nothing wrong. We drove 7 long hours home with no suspension in order to take our vehicle to our mechanic.

We noticed every sign that said, “Rough Road Ahead”.

Coinciding with all of this we have had some personal trials.

I am not going to share the details.  I know this…there are certain things that relationships cannot do without, just like vehicles.  If you don’t gas up, you won’t go anywhere.  Likewise, if you don’t put water in the battery, the battery will die.  If you don’t water your heart, your heart will die; your passion will die. If your front suspension works fine but your rear suspension is out, your vehicle is going to shake everyone in the vehicle.  Just like if one spouse is down for the count, the whole family is going to shake.  It is what it is.

Every time I saw that “Rough Road Ahead” sign I wanted to cry because our situation looked like it could be a “rough road head” for a while.  Life can feel overwhelming and look overwhelming in the face of uncertainty.   Let me tell you one thing for certain, “rough roads” with Jesus are better than smooth roads without Him.

Healing is never a “one time” event.  As long as we live, we will need a Healer. 

We made it home. 

After being back for a few days and basically staying home because I didn’t want to drive without the rear suspension, we contacted our mechanic.  He took a look and said he could replace our air suspension with coil suspension…for $360 (about).  We asked each other what we thought.  I had read this kind of repair could cost anywhere from $450 to $1500, so $360 sounded okay.  Neither of us had an answer so we prayed.  A little while later, our mechanic texted the Hubs and said he found a lose hose and he reconnected it and the suspension was working fine.  He charged us $40.  Praise God!

Sometimes when we get disconnected, disconnected from God, our spouse, our family and even our church the isolation leads us to feel every bump in our rough road.  Connection smooths our ride.  Those things that could shake us to our core, become a small bounce in the road.  We need each other.  Check your connections, make sure you are making real connections in your life….Facebook doesn’t really count.  When you are with people, put your phone down and pay attention (listen) to the people you are with….that is real connection. 

Back to the truck, I received an text from my dad on Sunday saying, we do not own him for the battery, someone paid him for it.  Unexpected blessing in the middle of a difficult situation.  A demonstration that God loves us and He is for us.

We all have situations that God allows to manifest in the physical.  He does it to show us things.

Yes, the road has been rough….it’s not forever.  Yes, we let the water evaporate from our battery and that killed it.  We had to replace it…or rather, we have had to allow God to replace it.  God replaces our passion when it goes out.  We have to  pay attention to when our passion is evaporating (our passion for God and our passion for each other).  Yes, the suspension may go out again…and we will get it fixed again.   As I said (rather randomly) , “Healing is not a ‘one time’ event.”  Healing is an ongoing journey.  We are people in need of a Healer.  Get connected.  You do not want to travel down your “rough road” alone. 

“They shall come with weeping, And with supplications I will lead them. I will cause them to walk by the rivers of waters, In a straight way in which they shall not stumble; For I am a Father to Israel…” Jeremiah 31:9

With God, even the rough roads are straight.  No confusion but peace in the storm.

Remember, our rough times reveal those things God wants to heal.  Don’t despise the trail, there is a testimony hidden in it.  We overcome by the Blood of the Lamb and the word of our testimony.  Look around for the testimony in your situation!

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