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Friday, September 26, 2008

The Car

I smile even now as I remember her face as I opened the door and the new red car shone like a bright polished apple behind her. You could have lit an entire city from the brilliance of her eyes and smile! I looked in amazement. “Who’s car Wanda?”

“It’s mine!” came the thrilled reply.

I really hope that my amazement…and confusion didn’t register on my face. I have the unfortunate disease called “talking face syndrome”. My face usually tells it like it is, whether my mouth does or not. So when she said that, my mind instantly thought, “But you don’t have a driver’s license.”

However, the mouth said “Wow! It is beautiful!”

Wanda had been practicing and I knew this, but I had no idea she was “ownership ready” yet. She had always been nervous about driving. I never knew exactly “why” she didn’t pursue the license issue when we were younger, but as time went by, I didn’t really think about it much. I rationalized that if I didn’t ---then she didn’t either.

But the fact was she did.

She longed for a bit of normalcy in her life, such as driving her daughter to school, just like the other mommies. She drove a bit with our pastor’s wife, Kathy, and a few times with a dear woman from our church, Ms. Shirley. I think she may have even taken our sister, Aimee for a spin….did I say spin? She “talked” about driving to me---but I never was able to go with her anywhere. I regret that.

Sometime after my sister Wanda passed away, her husband, Mark, felt that he needed to sell her car. After all, he could only drive one. A co-worker of mine had expressed an interest a few times and when the time came, I relayed the interest to Mark. They made contact with one another about the information, price, car details, etc., and Mark told her that I would drive it to work on Tuesday for her and her husband to test drive it.

I knew would be hard.

I tried to put “hard things” out of my mind. My mentality was, “if I don’t think about it, I won’t have to deal with it, therefore, it won’t be hard.”

All lies of course. Whether dealt with or not…the hard things of life will not go away. It does not sleep---rather it will stir your heart and mind and keep you from sleep.

So the morning of the drive in the little red car came and I had this sort of nervous feeling of “What will I feel when I sit down? When I crank it up?” Mark had told me the night before that Wanda had a little “CD” case inside the armrest compartment. Interested and wanting some music to flood my soul, as I started down the highway, I opened the compartment and pulled out this cute little light blue case with the words “Women of Faith” stamped into it.

Just as I was wondering what music would soon be filling my heart, a message in music (one that I could almost hear Wanda herself saying to me) came from the speakers.

“Lord, I’m glad You didn’t let me look ahead
to see the trials that I would have to face.
I would have lived my life caught up in fear and dread
and missed a lot of joys along the way”…

Since this was a devotional CD with music in the mix, the song faded away with the first verse. I was a puddle of emotion and tears. My eyes so filled with tears, I began to wipe at my eyes and face to see the road in front of me. Why I didn’t wear waterproof mascara was beyond me!

I could hear those very words coming from Wanda’s mouth. I searched for the handkerchief I had stuffed in my bag that morning. Smearing black around my eyes I knew I should have just left off any makeup at this point.

After the scripture verses were read, more of the song came through;

"On this journey I have had my share of tears,
Lonely days when I could not understand,
But then I’d hear You whisper gently,
Child, I’m here
And I knew that You were holding to my hand,
Every step has brought me closer Lord, to You

Every step that I have taken, every valley I’ve walked thru,
I have seen that your grace cannot be shaken,
Every step brought me closer Lord, to You".

I can’t tell you much about that drive to work that morning. What I can tell you is the Lord was more near than I had felt Him in days. (My fault---not His.)

Tucked neatly in the armrest compartment with the CD case, was a 4x6-index card in Wanda's neat printing that read, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Philippians 4:13". Her verse for driving. His words for His dear child---to comfort and strengthen her in the tests of life.

The driving test is not unlike many tests we face on a daily basis.

Surrounded by others going to and from their stations in life, not knowing if they will keep to their lane, but trusting Him to carry us on to the destination He plans for each one of us.

On that particular morning, driving that particular car, my heart ached for a talk with Wanda. For just a few minutes to spend at her table. She would have definitely told me,

“Sister, please slow down. Life is short. For some, shorter than others. Take each moment and relish it to the fullest. Love God. Love others. Love life".

That is my message to each of you darling sisters today.

Slow down.

Life is short.

Eat cake.

Share a cup of coffee and listen to a friend.

You may be the only one she has to talk to.

We build sweet relationships with friends in the internet world and sometimes, neglect the very friends the Lord has blessed our lives with. Lend a shoulder and lend a hand.

It's nearing Fall, a time when I love to clear out the house of things that I don't need. Suggest a shared cleaning with a friend. By that I mean, you go to her house and help her and then she in turn will come to your house! Fellowship and clean houses! What can be better?

Father, You alone know our days length. Fulfill Your divine purpose in each of our lives. Help us to be an encouragement and load lifter for our sisters in need. There are many. You love us all the same. I love You Lord! Use me. I'm Yours. In the name of Jesus Christ~Amen

God bless you all!

I'd love your visit at Knightly News!

Song: Every Step by Rebecca J. Peck
Thomas Peck Music (BMI)
Peck’s Corner Publishing (ASCAP)
Peck Publishing House (SESAC)

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Blogger Homesteader in Training said...

I can't even begin to tell you how much this post touched me today. It's so true. I will take this advice and start applying it today! Circumstances in my life has led me to the same conclusion. It was nice to have it backed up with this post.
Blessings to you!

September 26, 2008 at 5:54 AM  
Anonymous annie said...

Great post! I've been taking time to walk every evening and visit with Matt... it's been such a blessing and retreat. The bonus is it is also exercise, but it is a luxury to step out for that time and smell the fresh air! Have a wonderful Friday!

September 26, 2008 at 9:50 AM  
Blogger Melanie said...

Angie, this post has really touched me today. This weekend I will be wrapping up a BUSY, BUSY week that has been filled with almost more tasks than I can complete in number of hours in the day. I SO needed a reminder to slow down and take time to enjoy!

I pray you have a great weekend!

September 26, 2008 at 1:01 PM  
Blogger JesusRulzMe said...

Sister Angie,

This was truly wonderful! Thank you for sharing a tough time in your life with us. I'm so blessed you did!

Yes, it's true, life is short - we ought to slow down and enjoy it - it truly is like a blink of an eye!

Grateful for you,

September 26, 2008 at 2:30 PM  
Blogger Julie said...

This was precious. Your sister must have been a special lady. Her heart shines through in your words.

I am sorry for your loss.

How hard that day must have been for you... bitter/sweet. The sweetness of His voice talking to you through each reminder, but the bitterness of the loss of having her with you.

Thanks for sharing this beautiful tribute and devo.


September 26, 2008 at 7:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What a thoughtful Post. Really touched me and made me think. Thanks so much for this.

Would love for you to join us for our Fruit of the Spirit Friday!
Come on over and join the fun!

September 26, 2008 at 9:52 PM  
Blogger Denise said...

When I come here and read such a post it always hurts my heart..... It was a beautiful post and one that made me sit here and cry........ Oh the beautiful presence of the Lord at times when we least expect it... Oh the love between sisters.... the three of you pain such a beautiful picture of family..... My sister was here from Tuesday through Thursday afternoon. She parked her car in the circle drive in front of my home and made her way across the yard past my fence to the cute little house to visit my Mom and Dad.. She only lives 1 hour away but is never here more than a couple of times a year........ We are only sisters by blood and it has been that way over 30 years now...... Nothing I do reaches her heart........ I cried a lot while she sat out there and refused to come to say hello..... I so needed a sister many years ago but I so need one now..... I love how you ended your post........ Slow down enjoy life and share a cup of coffee with a friend.......... Thanks for sharing the story of the Red Car.......... it touched my heart....

September 26, 2008 at 10:31 PM  
Blogger Cheryl said...


Thank you so much for sharing so near and dearto you!



September 27, 2008 at 1:29 AM  

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It is good to hear from you... thank you so very much for leaving a note on the table. That makes us smile!

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