Answered prayer is always a tricky subject. Some would say it is whatever happens. Others would say it is “unanswered” if it doesn’t turn out as expected. And many will just avoid the subject altogether for fear of being wrong. What I think is that we simply have to share what happens from our perspective and let it speak for itself. Wrong, right, awkward, amazing, what we wanted, not what we wanted….whatever it is. It just is. I never want the fear of being misunderstood or “wrong” to prevent me from just sharing what I see.
I have many of these stories but this is one I want to share out loud today. The other day I was on my way to Champerico with the goal to arrive before sunset. Why else do you go the beach except to experience the maginificent display of God’s creative expression in a day: sunrise, Pacific coast waves and sunset? It wasn’t sunset time, but it was near approaching. The road is horrible…nothing compares in the U.S., but imagine one road of nothing but potholes and you are traveling it. On one of the bumps the car died. Just died. Right there.. on the road to Champarico. Car dead. Nothing. You can’t call Triple A and you really aren’t sure what happens when a vehicle breaks down in the middle of the road in Guatemala. I wasn’t worried but I was definitely curious of how this part of the adventure was going to unfold!
After a while of us pushing to try and get it started, I began to pray that God would send some angels to push the car for us and get it started. I don’t know why I specifically prayed for angels to help us but those were the words that came. A few minutes later, as the sun was setting fast and dark was truly only minutes away….a pick-up truck with Claro stickers on it (local cell phone provider) pulled up with three men in it. They helped us push and when that didn’t work they got interested in the situation. We popped the hood and went over the scenario again. We all agreed: it seemed like it was the battery. But they wanted to troubleshoot and makes sure. One man pulled a tester from the truck and assessed the spark plugs: all working. Another pulled out flashlights (by now it is completely dark) and another pulled out some strong wire. They found a cable that had been pulled from the battery on the bump. Aha! These three men reconnected the cable with wire from their stash. They made it all clean and perfect. And then the test: turn the key and whalah….it started!!! I was jumping for joy..truly. I pulled 100 quetzales from my pocket and they refused it, even with much insistence. In my broken spanish I told them they were a direct answer to prayer. Did they know?
As we drove away from that spot and on to the destination my spirit and mind were so full of thanksgiving. I had no idea how God might answer my prayer that angels would come help us push the car and it would start… but I am certain I never dreamed it would be as clear, creative and beautiful as three locals showing up with tools, knowledge, willingness to help and sending us safely on our way.
Once when Abraham was sitting in his tent he was visited by three men. (Genesis 18) There are many opinions about who these three men were and why they came. They gave hope and they spoke things that were beyond human understanding and practice. I can’t say exactly who these three were that visited Abraham, but on the road to Champerico this week I think they stopped by in a Claro pick-up truck. That’s just my perspective. God is so faithful. Rest in that truth.