I've been called crazy, weak minded, silly, self-righteous, naive and stupid for believing in the one true God. But my belief has never swayed and what happened yesterday just cemented my faith in just exactly who the Great Provider is.
I had to cover an event in Wauseon, Ohio, about 50 miles southeast of the farm. I headed out and was low on gas but decided to wait to fill up until I got to Ohio, where gas is usually cheaper. I went to the event, enjoyed the company of farmers, tried to figure out what the professor from Ohio State University was talking about with drop size, air assist, canopies and drift and then I finally headed home.
Knowing I needed to get gas, I stopped at the cheapest place I found, a Marathon station just south of the Fulton County Fairgrounds. I hopped out, saw that you couldn't pay at the pump and decided I was too hot and too lazy to walk 20 steps into the gas station so I left and looked for the next place to get gas.
I found the next station just south of Morenci and pulled up to the pump. I inserted my debit card, punched in my PIN and took off the gas cap when I noticed I was at a "diesel only" pump. Darn it! So I pushed the cancel button, made sure it was cleared and pulled around to the gas pump.
Repeating my steps, a message flashed on the screen that said, "Please See Cashier." Oh for heaven's sake all I wanted was some gas! So I walked in, stood in line while a cute little girl paid for her goodies and walked out the door. I told the cashier what happened and she said, "Oh, no problem, I'll just run your card here," and so we did. Problem, the card wouldn't work. Looking perplexed I said, "Where's the ATM?"
I decided to get money from the ATM since my card suddenly wouldn't work. The receipt came out and said, "Unable to complete transaction." Looking even more perplexed I walked out the door and wondered what the heck was going on. All I could figure was that I tried to use my card too many times and the bank put a hold on all the funds. Clearly, I was not going to be able to get any money off my card.
I got in my car and headed toward home thinking about my situation: I was 40 miles from home, my gas tank on empty, one dollar in my wallet and if I was lucky I could scrape up about another dollar in change from my purse! Praying in one sentence, "please Lord, get me home" and cursing myself in the next sentence, "Why didn't you just fill up before you left home?!"
I drove and drove, keeping one eye on the road, the other eye on the gas gauge while wondering just exactly how many pennies I had in my purse. Knowing I had at least $2, I stopped at the next town and figured I'd pump $2 worth of gas, count out my change and pray it would be enough to get me the rest of the way. It would have to be, being stuck on the side of the road on a hot August day was just not in the cards....or so I thought.
I pulled up to the gas pump and counted my change, one more time. I opened the door and stepped toward the gas pump and happened to look down and there on the ground in front of the gas pump was a wad of money. From what I could see it was a five and a couple of ones! I smiled as I bent down and wondered, "Who left this behind? Are they still here?"
I looked around and there wasn't another soul in sight. I thought there must be someone here that had just walked off and dropped it. I looked for anyone who might have seen someone drop it, a car driving away from the pump, someone just walking into the store...someone to whom this money belonged. But there was no one.
No one pumping gas, no one going in or going out of the store, no one driving away, no one.... not one person. Then I began to giggle. And as I giggled, I said, "Thank you God, you are so amazing and so kind to leave a few dollars for me, thank you!"
I pumped my gas still wondering if the person who left this might pop up and ask about it. I walked in to pay for the gas and the attendant was gabbing on the phone and there were people who were eating in the attached restaurant. It was just a quiet afternoon at the truck stop in Fayette, Ohio.
I walked back out still giggling at God and thanking him for His grace and I couldn't get home fast enough to tell my family about God's provision.
I'm sure you can count the number of times on one hand you found money somewhere out of the ordinary and passed it off as luck. But how many times have you found money somewhere out of the ordinary when you were in desperate need and prayed for a miracle?
Go ahead, call me crazy, weak minded, silly, self-righteous, naive and stupid for believing in the one true God, but I'm a crazy, weak minded, silly, self-righteous, naive and stupid believer who was given $7 by a loving, gracious, merciful Provider named God. And I love Him!