Two years ago today, we were on our way to Colorado. We had stopped overnight in Amarillo and I woke up early before the rest of my family with an uneasy heart. I was facing some really hard stuff. I had not slept well and decided to head down to get breakfast, read and pray a bit before we headed out.
As I was praying, I remember specifically asking God to show me His love for me tangibly that day--I even wrote it in my journal. Honestly, it wasn't so much a prayer of faith in knowing He would do it, as it was of one of desperation. I was so tired and spent and wanted so badly to be able to engage fully in our family vacation.
Pretty soon, Brian and the girls got up and we hit the road. Now, if you've ever made the drive to Colorado, you know that there's not much to see for hours at a time. In fact, we had to wait over an hour until we could find a bathroom at one point.
As we were driving, I saw my friend Barb's post about driving back from Colorado. On the same road we were on. At the same time. So we started texting back and forth to see if we could meet for lunch, but logistics just didn't work out.
As soon as I had resigned myself to not seeing her, Brian asked me if I wanted to pull over on the side of the road and wait for them--just to say "Hi!" Really? Now for those of you who have never traveled with a man before, let me enlighten you. They don't stop. We are lucky to get food and bathroom breaks. They like to set a course and get there. Brian falls in that category and if the girls were boys, I seriously think he might make us carry mason jars for potty breaks like he did as a kid.
Not only did Brian suggest this, Barb's husband agreed--and they were racing to get home for the NBA finals that night. Seriously? Two men agreed to put a delay in their schedule at the same time???
There were no more gas stations for miles, so we made note of the mile marker and pulled over at a grain silo. There are a lot of these, so I still worried in the back of my head that they had already passed us. About 5 minutes later, our friends pulled in.
As I jumped out of the car and hugged Barb, I couldn't stop the tears. I know, I know, I cry all the time, but this was different. As I saw her, I remembered my prayer that morning for God to tangibly show me He loved me and was with me in this.. How much more tangible could a hug from a dear friend be?
I still can't think about it without crying. God doesn't always answer my prayers so visibly. But He chose to that day when I was at a very low point.
And it changed me.
It reminded me that even in the hard times, He loves me and is always waiting for opportunities to show me how much. I just need to be looking and be available for a last minute schedule change.