Divine Intervention: More Thanksgiving Miracles
At the King Wildlife Sanctuary operated by The Church in the Green, I have a rock wall on the gate house with the sculpted face of a girl with flowers in her hair to remind me of the Blessed Virgin’s prayer which I pray every time I feed the chickadees and red cardinals. It reads: “Lord, Be it done unto me according to your word.” I am definitely a man of faith, but am, sorry to say, not someone of great faith, but since I encountered the risen Christ, I am someone who does believe God’s word. Any faith with no expectation of God’s word and promises being fulfilled is no faith at all.
I am sharing this series to document some of the miracles God has done to be an anchor to the soul of a wretch like I was and thereby encourage all the rest. I entered the service just when the Beatles were getting big in England. I only entered, for the same reason many other rural kids do in America: because there were few to no jobs in the area, and if you read the first publication in this series, you might recall I really wanted to see the world…even before I was born! I was ready to go to Vietnam, learn what was really happening there, write some journalistic exposés and explore the eastern hemisphere, but as destiny would have it, I was stationed in Reno, Nevada and fell in love with the west. If that had not happened, I never would have had my first-born daughter Lisa. I am not a proud man, but I’m sure proud of her. She is musically gifted, creatively talented, intellectually bright…oh yeah, and did I tell you she is my daughter!
After enduring four years fighting the war on poverty and “not being content with my wages,” I went to work for a big, well-known casino trusting I could work my way up to at least a $50,000 a year job in a couple of years, but I not only saw a lot of heartache in the clubs, but got addicted to gambling myself and had a very hard time “Leaving Las Vegas.”
I truly was a people person, so that part of casino life was fun, but it was truly a rat-race filled with disillusionment and stress. One morning I had been asked to fire one of my best employees who had eight children so a cousin of another supervisor could get his job. I knew I had to make a decision and at my young age, I already suspected I would choose to walk. The very morning I was to fire this gentleman, I noticed a street sweeper with a big push broom cleaning up Virginia Street from the prior night’s revelry as he whistled a very happy tune. Tensions were high that morning in the club and that street sweeper gave me the courage to confront the possibility that a job that only offered a good salary and a sad countenance might not be life’s answer to anything. In those days, I wasn’t a praying man, just a kid, really, with great expectations and ignorance…and another bit of help from a guy with long hair and a broom…and just possibly, my first angel. I did not know it then, but they all are spirits sent to serve those who are the chosen heirs of salvation (Hebrews 1:14)!
I always take the “road less traveled,” and it really is the scenic route, so don’t let it surprise you that my wife and I were on our way to Pennsylvania from Reno, driving through somewhere in Wyoming in a blizzard. We had driven for too many hours and the hum of the tires of the trailer I was pulling, and the hypnotic rhythm of the falling snow was lulling me to sleep. The clock told me I had another hour before we could find a motel if any were open this late and I was nodding in and out of sleep. I finally made one last incoherent decision: I would place my head against the driver’s side window, sleep a few moments, wake up and repeat the process. I thought perhaps this might be the way to reach that night’s destination (I can’t use the word reasoned). I saw a road sign saying the town we were attempting to make was 45 miles ahead. As my head rested upon the glass, I discovered I could easily hear the few big trucks as they approached and then passed by in the opposite direction to my travel. I then made the decision to stay asleep for a while as I drove strictly by sound! (You do not need to tell me this is both impossible and insane, it happened nevertheless.)
I cannot lie. I enjoyed the nap and was marveling at how refreshed I felt as I awakened. Suddenly the most incredible chill of fear swept over my consciousness at what I had been doing or dreamed I had been doing. Instantly, I slammed on the brakes and kept them pressed to the floor. The trailer slid sideways and as quickly, back into my lane. Snowflakes nearly obliterated any view until I finally came to one of those famous screeching halts. My headlights were now the only lights on the otherwise empty highways! Directly in front of the Rambler station wagon stood a heavily horned male antelope and spread behind him in a large wedge shaped formation, at least 16 females. If I had gone two more feet, my wife and I would likely never have lived…and you would never have heard about how God, long ago now, protected one of His would be servants. As Sid Roth would say, “It’s Supernatural!”
Now consider this: God doesn’t see us for what we are but what we will become after we receive Christ, get transformed over a lifetime and are manifest as a new creation. King David’s father had a number of sons, but God had His eyes on the least of them, David, to rescue Israel. If you can, even in spite of yourself hope that God does have His eyes on you…then trust me, He does. You may wonder why I began this article talking about a True Sanctuary for Wildlife and wasted ink talking about Red Cardinals and Chickadees. Well, there is a song that talks about something Jesus said and the song goes, “His eye is on the Sparrow and I know He watches me.”
I dedicate this little group of stories to my precious daughter Lisa.
Remember that we always can find something to be thankful for. Corrie ten Boom thanked the Lord for the fleas and lice in her prison with many other women. She had smuggled in a Bible and led the other women to Christ through her Bible studies. Normally, the Nazi guards would have taken the book from her, but they never came into that retention area because of those little creepy-crawlers!
2 Chronicles 16:9 says, “The eyes of the Lord look to and fro through all the earth to show Himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is perfect towards Him.”
“Lord, Create in me a clean and perfect heart and renew a right Spirit within me.” And be Thankful…You will be thankful!
His Servant, David