I’ve always been very skeptical when I hear about those extraordinary “God moments” that people so freely talk about during church sermons or on those daytime Christian TV shows. Not that I think they are impossible or never happen – but because I had never experienced that, I thought it was unlikely that anyone else did. Plus, a lot of the time it seemed people just said that stuff for attention – right? Well, I am still a little bit skeptical, but something happened to me recently that I just can’t keep to myself. I present you: “The Montana Incident”.
And by “Montana”, I do not mean the state. I mean the car. Er, minivan. A 2001 silver Pontiac Montana. The first car I ever drove. I loved that piece of junk. But one day, he betrayed me.
February 2013. 10:55 AM. I’m already running late, and I have an exam in an hour. It’s pouring rain outside, and my freshly straightened hair is already starting to turn into a mini afro. I climb into the van and start up the car. Everything sounds fine. I start driving. Everything is still fine. I make it past a few lights and all of a sudden, my car just stops. STOPS. 60 km to 0 in about 5 seconds. IN THE MIDDLE OF AN INTERSECTION.
WITH AN 18-WHEELER TRAILING CLOSE BEHIND ME.
I’m dead. This truck is going to plow right through my car, and I’m going to die. My life flashed before my eyes. Well, not really. I just had a massive panic attack and started to cry.
I was able to slowly maneuver my vehicle onto the side of the road, where it heaved in pain and finally came to a complete stop. At this point, I’m crying like a baby. I attempt to call my mom even though my hands are shaking so much I can barely get my cell out of my backpack. She picks up the phone (which is weird because she NEVER does when she’s at work) and tries to calm me down. Hearing her voice does help a little.
Now, I could be telling you the story of “The time I missed an exam”. Or “The time I got into a serious car accident with a tractor-trailer.” Or “The time I had such a bad panic attack that I peed my pants”. But that is not what this story is about. This is the story of “The time God really came through for me”.
Looking back at this story now, there are SO many crazy things. I could tell this story on one of those day-time Christian TV shows and maybe when people hear MY story, they would be like “Wow, I totally don’t believe that chick.”
This is what happened.
For one thing, my car stopped in the middle of an intersection right? Well I realized after that the lights at that intersection were out. Do you know what that means? It means that EVERY car is supposed to treat it like a stop sign. You are supposed to stop. (I was stupid and didn’t stop completely – I just slowed down). This means that 18-wheeler couldn’t have hit me, because he had to stop at the lights.
Another thing: 5 minutes after I had stalled, a cop showed up. Duh. Because the lights were out. He came up to my car and asked me if I was okay, if I needed him to call someone for me, if I needed a tow truck or whatever. I felt so much safer.
ALSO, my mom just happened to answer her phone? She never answers her phone at work. Especially at 11:00 because she doesn’t have a break at that time.
ALSO ALSO, my car turned back on and I was able to get it back to my house (I was only 5 minutes away from home).
ALSO ALSO ALSO, my dad just happened to have an extra long break that day, and was able to leave work early, drive home, and drive ME to my exam.
By the time my dad got home, It was 11:35. My exam was at 12:00. It normally takes me 45 minutes to get to school. Welp, I got to school at 11:55 that day. I was early for my exam. I got there even before my friend did.
Yep. And here’s the REAL kicker. The night before all this happened, I was having a really hard time with my anxiety. So I sat on the floor and prayed “God, I need to know that I can trust you. Please show me that I can trust you NO MATTER WHAT.”
My car broke down in the middle of an intersection that day I had a big exam.
I was safe.
I got to school in time.
I didn’t need to worry.
There are so many horrible things that could have happened. Imagine if the lights weren’t out? Imagine if my mom hadn’t answered her phone? Imagine if my car didn’t turn back on? If my dad wasn’t able to leave work and drive me to school? I could have been telling you a very different story right now. But I’m not. I’m telling you this one. The one where God showed me that I can trust Him, not matter what.
And that is the Montana Incident.