A few nights ago, around the dinner table, Daddy told us a story that, without God’s mercy and protection, would have been fatal. We all listened with dropped jaws and shocked expressions as he told us the details.
A man was driving a small pick-up truck on his way back to work after being on a sales call. Suddenly, he noticed smoke coming out from under the hood, and pulled off the road. As he climbed out of the truck, he realized that the vehicle was on fire, so he quickly found a fire extinguisher and tried to put out the flames. The fire extinguisher did little to stop the fire, however, and, realizing that the truck could explode, he got as far away from it as he could. The truck continued to burn, and even tried to start up somehow. He watched in shock as the fire burned everything off of the truck, including the tires, leaving only the metal frame as evidence of the truck’s existence.
The man in this story is a man by the name of Rick, a designer at Andrews Truss (where Daddy works) and a personal friend of our family. He was on his way back to the office on Tuesday, August 11th when this incident occurred which startled all of us with it’s reality and the brevity of life. We marvel at God’s goodness and compassion.
As I was pondering the situation, I realized that there are several lessons we could learn from this.
- Occurrences like these remind us of just how short our life is and how quickly it can be changed. We never know what the next minute of our life will bring. Proverbs 27:1 – “Boast not thyself of to morrow; for thou knowest not what a day may bring forth.”
- They also remind us of our need for complete and total dependence on God in every area of life. Had Mr. Rick delayed in getting out of the truck, he probably wouldn’t have lived. But because of God’s mercy and grace, he survived without a scrape. Lamentations 3:22 – “It is of the LORD’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not.”
- You could also say that our lives are like this truck: here one moment, gone the next. James 4:14 – “Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.”
- Sin is a lot like fire. It is deadly, spreads easily, is hard to stop, and leaves it’s scars. Proverbs 6:27-28 – “Can a man take fire in his bosom and his clothes not be burned? Can one go upon hot coals, and his feet not be burned?”
- Our thoughts are also a lot like fire. The longer we tolerate sinful thoughts, the farther they spread, the harder they are to stop, the more damage they do, and the more obvious and disastrous the consequences are. The thoughts we entertain will form our desires; the desires will shape our actions; the actions will become our habits; the habits will develop our character; and our character will determine our destiny. We have a choice to think on good or evil, and all that we do begins in our thought processes. Guard your mind. Philippians 4:13 – “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue and if there be any praise, think on these things.”
We are rejoicing and praising God for His unfailing love and grace, and for His ever-abiding mercy and protection over us. Take time to thank Him for the circumstances He puts in our lives to draw us closer to Him, and praise Him for the incredible ways in which He works in and through our lives!