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Redbird Car

I tried to write two different blogs this week. Neither worked.

So, I’m telling a story. Not just any story—a close-to-the-heart, real life story. Actually, it’s a story within a story.

It starts with frustration. My Ford Explorer makes a squealing sound. It comes and goes. Sounds like a scream under the blue hood.

I tell my husband. He drives it. It squeals and shrills, but he says, “I can’t hear it. I don’t hear a thing.”

I am stunned. I probably look at him as if he’s lying.

He says, “Really. I can’t hear a thing.”

Driving down the highway, I say, “There it is! Can you hear it?” He shakes his head. He cannot hear the high-pitched shrill. This is with hearing-aids in both ears.

We head back home. I look at the hay bales on the right and process. No words come out of my mouth. What’s clear is that we have two problems. My husband, who has been my personal mechanic for 30 years, cannot hear the car problem, and my car needs somebody to do something.

He hears my words, but he cannot hear the sound the car is making. I get knotted on the inside.

I have worried and run ahead of him before. Not this time. I stay in the here and now and decide I’ll continue to drive my car, and I’ll pray about it.

When I pray, I ask the Lord God to do something to help me. I don’t know what I want Him to do, but something. I need wheels.

I guess I just put it in God’s lap. If I need a new car, okay. If this one gets fixed, okay. I think I did ask that I still have a heater and AC in whatever car I drive.

Three weeks later, we are leaving a potluck after church. Jimmy turns on the key, and the manager of O’Reilly’s Auto yells, “Hey, Bro, I’d see about that problem!”

Jimmy says, “Can you hear it?”

“Oh, yeah. I bet the neighbors can even hear it!”

You can probably imagine my reaction. I could not wipe the grin off my face! I thanked him, and I thanked God again and again. Oh, how I love God’s timing!

The next morning we had a new fan belt on my car, and on we went with our little lives.

Meanwhile, my friend’s mother had been dying. It was a slow, sad, difficult process. We prayed for both women and their comfort.

Weeks later, my husband asked if I’d noticed the red car in their driveway. I had not. But then, I’m not a detail person.

He said our friend wanted to give that car, her mother’s car, to our grandboys who are learning to drive. My reaction was, “Whhaat?” I was stunned.

He explained that she had no one else to leave it to, and she wanted to help those boys and their dad.

I stayed out of the way and let the process unfold.

This friend had many things on her mind. And it took a while for me to process what my husband had said about the car. I heard it, but I didn’t take it in. It was like I was watching a campfire from afar. This may be my reaction when I don’t know where a story is going.

I know she likes our grandchildren, but a car is a mammoth gift, even a used car. I asked my husband if he was going to accept the car. He said, “She won’t accept any payment. I’ve offered. She just wants them to have the car.”

I prayed about it, and what came to me was my blue car with the bad fan belt. I’d asked God to fix it any way He wanted to fix it. I’d surrendered it. Honestly, I thought He did fix it, and he was through with my ride.

Our grandboys are going to be 16 on their next birthday. My husband said, “These boys will probably work somewhere once they turn 16. They’ll need a car, but they may not need a red car, which the police will triple-check. And you know, they are big boys.”

He suggested my blue Explorer would be the better car for them. I listened and agreed. He then suggested I take the red compact and give the Explorer to their dad, who’ll get the insurance, change the title, and get it ready for them.

Exactly what we did this evening. So, God fixed my Explorer for the boys, but He’s handing me a good red car.

God orchestrated this. No way could I have ever figured the twists and turns.

So I will now be driving a redbird and trying not to fly.

Hugs from the Ozarks,

Pat Durmon

P.S. Happy for your comments and shares, always.

Photo of Pat in her redbird car taken by Jimmy Durmon, September 2019.

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