This afternoon on my way to pick up Daniel at the Reynold's, I noticed that the car a/c was not running up to par. It was a muggy afternoon, in-between thunderstorms, and the air inside the car was not cooling. When Daniel and I got back in the car to go home, I told him the a/c wasn't working too well and we both used the automatic buttons to roll our windows down. Daniel noticed that the windows were going very slowly, but I kind of dismissed it and kept driving. We turned onto Trousdale Drive to head home and I looked down and noticed that the numbers on the odometer weren't showing. Hmmm. I think the car is dying. Oh, now, it died!
So, there we are, a few cars back from the 4-way stop at Trousdale and Hogan, not able to even turn the hazard lights on. Thankfully, the windows were down, so we had some air, but the car would not start or even try to start. We were on a slight incline, so I couldn't see me and Daniel pushing it anywhere (especially not with me wearing my wedge-heeled espadrilles). I said a prayer asking God for some help and waited. I called my friends and got those wheels in motion (pun intended) and prayed some more. Cars were having to pass by on the left, in the oncoming lane, to get by us . . . not a real fun place to be stalled. I looked in my rear-view mirror and saw a big pick-up truck stop behind us and put his hazard lights on. When the guy got out of the truck, I saw that it was someone we knew (his son and Daniel had played baseball together). I was immediately thankful to God for His provision of a Good Samaritan who we knew!
Paul checked under the hood and decided to try to jump start the car. Our friends, Steve and Maddie, arrived about that time and Steve helped Paul with the jump-start. The car started, but only for a little while and wouldn't let me drive more than a few feet, if that far. They jumped it again. Same thing. Finally, Steve got in and coasted down the hill to the parking lot of the school while Paul directed traffic. May God bless Paul for his willingness to stop and help a person in need.
Since I'm a member of AAA, I called them so they could come give me a new battery. Robin Adams drove Daniel and I to our house to change clothes and get some things we needed (Daniel was already planning to spend the night at the Adams'). When we got back to the car, AAA had already called to say that the mechanic was on his way. Once he got there, he tested the battery and determined that the problem was not the battery. He looked in the engine and saw that the serpentine belt was broken. He said something about not leaving me there, got on the phone to the Auto Zone to see if they had a belt, and we drove to buy the part. He thought it would only take 10 minutes to replace it, but he spent about an hour working on it before he got it finished. He definitely went above and beyond the call of duty. I don't think he was supposed to have done more than check the battery, but thank God for his kindness. I learned that Nate, the AAA guy, had lost his adult daughter to a liver disease last year and has a two-year-old grandson who he adores. I pray that God would let the light of his face shine upon Nate and his family and give them peace, comfort and healing from the loss of their daughter/wife/mother.
I'm so thankful for the ways God protected and provided help for us today. My car is running again. I didn't go hungry (thanks to Sherry and Steve and their pizza supper). We were in a familiar neighborhood close to friends who could come help. And I gained new insight into the hearts of people in this world.
"The LORD will protect your coming and going both now and forever." Psalm 121:8