Monday, July 22, 2013

Blessed To Be the Answer

Nothing went right. About three years ago a bike ride was beset with all kinds of physical and mechanical problems. Enough! I had planned on a 30-50 mile ride but 10-12 was all it was good for. The bike went back on the truck; my many full bike bottles mostly full of water, were boxed up. Headed home. Not a good day at all. Driving home on this small country road, I kept revisiting all the problems I had had.

It was hot, very hot, humid; typical Texas summer. On the side of the road up ahead I saw an old automobile with the hood up and stream spewing up from the radiator. An old black man stood at some distance, watching, sweating in the heat. Several vehicles passed, but no one had stopped yet. Should I stop? Everyone has a cell phone, surely. Maybe it will be all right. I pulled over and stopped.

Sure enough, the elder gentleman had no cell phone. He had been trying to make it to his daughter's house about three miles up the road. I could take him there, but what about his car? Wreckers cost money. The car could be driven, but the old leaky radiator had run out of water in this intense heat. Water, I thought, we need water. Maybe get just enough water in the old radiator to get him to his daughter's house. The country was hot and dry and the ditches had no water at all. Plan B: I could call his daughter, but wait.

Back at my truck, I loaded my arms with all my bike bottles with water in them. We emptied every last drop into the radiator and the steam hissing subsided a bit as if to say, "ah, thank you, so thirsty". My new friend got in his car and it started. The temperature gauge wasn't in the red and off we went, me following in my truck.

The man was so thankful. Such a small thing but for him, he was truly touched almost to tears. "God bless you," he said as I left. And He had. And perhaps I was not the one to be thanked that day. Perhaps, my ride was trashed just to be at that one spot on the road at that one moment in time, to help an old man in the sweltering heat. Perhaps he had prayed and I had been blessed to be the answer.