Friday, August 6

Not a Good Sound

We like to have Spanish Bibles on hand to give to people who ask for them. You'd be surprised how many people in Mexico don't have a Bible in their house -- even Christians! Why? Well, reading is just not a popular pasttime here, for one. Many folks just don't read. Another reason, though, is that they're a little spendy. If you bring in a little over $200 in a month, it's hard to justify spending 10% of that to purchase a book -- any book! So, when we travel to the States or when teams come down, we try to get inexpensive, paperback Bibles which we can hand out.

That said, we had an opportunity to give a Bible away on Tuesday. The husband of a Christian sister in Reforma had asked Braulio if he could find a Bible. Braulio asked Doug, and Doug dropped it off for the man, Ernesto. Ernesto works at a local shrimp farm as a manager. On Monday, the shrimp in a couple of the tanks just started dying for no apparent reason. Not knowing what else to do, he drove a mile to the beach, got out of his truck and just cried out to God. He spent some time there, and when he returned, the shrimp had stopped dying and it looked like things were improving in the tanks. He praised God for the miracle and immediately went to Braulio to share what had happened and to ask for a Bible.

We left the Bible with Braulio on Tuesday, said a prayer for Ernesto and went on with our day.

Last night, Thursday, Doug and I headed into town for our weekly "date" (that's where a husband and wife go out and buy groceries together and do all the other errands that need to be done for the household). We got to go see a movie, too, so it was more "date-like" than usual! Driving home late, in the rain, we were enjoying each other's company and wondering if we would have electricity at the house when we got home, when suddenly we heard a funky clunky sound. It was not a good sound.

Our first thought was a popped tire, which would have been a bummer, but when the engine died and steam came up, we knew it wasn't a tire. Here's where God's provision over every part of our life became (once more) evident:
  • Along the last 10 mile stretch of road to our home there are exactly 3 places to pull off the road safely in the rain. The rest is all steep shoulder and 6 inch deep mud. The Bad Sound happened about 50 meters from one of these pull-outs.
  • Traffic along this road at night is scarce. People traveling from Las Glorias after 10pm are usually drunk and people traveling toward Las Glorias...well, you generally wouldn't want them to stop and help you.
  • There was a truck about 2 miles behind us which drove past and then pulled over when the driver saw us with our hood up.
  • As we stood in the pouring rain thinking, "Who is this guy, and do we trust him?", the man rolled down his window and said, "Douglas, right? I'm Braulio's friend. I'm from Reforma."
  • "You're Claudia's husband!" we said.
  • Ernesto's truck had 4 wheel drive, so he could pull us up the muddy hill and back onto the road and he even had rope to haul us with. His rope and Doug's chain gave us just enough distance to tow -- if not comfortably -- at least safely!
So, what was the bad sound? I have no idea. We're leaning toward blown engine. Esteban's coming over later and they're going to tow the van to a mechanic in Palos Verdes. Pray that the mechanic will be able to fix the problem, that parts will be available, that God would supply the funds necessary to fix it. Praise God for all the ways He's already supplied in this situation and praise Him that now we have a friendship with Ernesto. He said that he was wondering where we lived and tried to find our house to thank us for the Bible. Now he knows where we live!

And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. -- Romans 8:28