. . . Until a sight on the side of the road goes against the grain of normal and makes her look twice.
The woman she just passed was—
Really? Trying to hitch a ride?
No. Can’t be. Not safe these days.
But a glance into the rear view mirror reflects the young woman, her thumb waving in the air, and she isn’t alone.
The double-take restarts The Driver’s day with head-shaking wonder over the nudge to do something.
You’re kidding, Lord! Turn around, go back, and pick up that young woman and her two children?
The Driver’s not in the habit of giving strangers rides. Besides, her car is too small. She’ll be late. And what if the woman needs more than a ride . . .
Her excuses pelt down like rain.
She glides past, the mind-poking irritation turning into curiosity and compassion that has her turning her small two-door coupe around a block and a half later.
Surely someone will have picked them up by the time she gets back there.
But, no. This is still hers to do.
Emergency blinkers and right hand signal clicking away, she pulls over to the curb. With a prayer, The Driver shakes her head again, plasters on a brave, like-I-do-this-everyday smile, and opens the car door, motioning for the woman and her two children to get in.
There’s hustle and bustle and back packs and the fresh scent of scrubbed clean, smiling little faces, as “mom” wedges her two children into the cramped back seat and sits in the passenger seat.
“How far are you going? Where?”
Ann introduces herself. The gutsy, determined, scrappy mother of three (there’s a baby at home) had been right out there on the edge of the busy road during morning rush hour—thumbing!
She was absolutely going to get all of them to school—her two children to the local Christian Academy and herself to the community college—one way or the other.
The Driver, whose chin is still on the floorboards at this mama-thumber, learns that Ann is a Christian and full of a diamond-in-the-rough faith. Ann shares that her husband, who is taking care of the baby, is fresh-out of a rehab for drug problems, has no job, and she may give him another chance.
She wants so much more for herself and her family that not even lack of transportation will stand in her way—and she openly thanks God and The Driver for today’s ride.
The Driver, not so openly, thanks God too, for His nudge to do this thing.
What a wonder to meet someone so determined to pull herself up and out of her current circumstances.
Ann will make it. She’s diamond, gold, and granite. A rock in the midst of the swirl and growth and change in her world.
Ann says she’ll walk from here, but The Driver will have none of that and waits while Ann walks her children to the school doors and returns for her ride to the last stop . . . the community college campus.
It’s been a long time since Ann and her children were passengers in The Driver’s little car. Once in a while, The Driver gets to find out what happened to those she’s encountered. Not this time. But it’s good to think about that heavenly urging and to pray that Ann and her little ones had a good life, maybe even the one Ann envisioned for them all that bright autumn morning.
I recently read that we should be praying and watching and looking for the things God is doing and asking Him if and how we might join Him to help. A little different than coming up with our own ideas of serving/helping/volunteering, isn’t it?
Some time after thinking about The Driver’s encounter and writing this post, I came to another reading. In My Utmost for His Highest for February 28: “We are not told to walk in the light of conscience or of a sense of duty, but to walk in the light as God is in the light. When we do anything from a sense of duty, we can back it up by argument; when we do anything in obedience to the Lord, there is no argument possible . . .”
It’s good when our “arguments” quickly fall by the wayside.
“For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God” (2 Cor. 10:4-5 NKJV).
Are you paying attention to the nudges you have that you just know that you know are from God?