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SCOT BELLAVIA: It Was Just A Flat Tire . . .

I was driving home from ATL one week to the hour prior, why didn’t my tire go flat on I-75 then?

The following weekend, I borrowed a truck from a fellow congregant. Had I been driving around in my car, where might it have gone flat? We can rightly imagine some worst-case scenarios.

Why didn’t it go flat at any other point in the months I’ve been naively and lazily postponing the flat by pumping the tire with air instead of having its leak plugged?

Why was I able to get safely to a gas station and wait for the tow truck rather than going flat on the highway on the way home?

How is it I had nothing else to do that night except be home? How is it that the following day school was out so I didn’t have to have my car for work? How is it I have friends willing to pick me up late at night to take me home from where the tow truck deposited my car?

Why’d my wife convince me so recently to get a new phone when my old one was working fine, albeit slowly? Well, the old phone’s battery wouldn’t have lasted as much as I needed it that night I got a flat.

I don’t know why any of these providential circumstances happened.

When they did, though, I met Damian and Courtney, a couple I would have otherwise passed on the corner. Damian attempted to assist me whilst jabbering my ear off with a selection of beggar’s scripts and choice words. Courtney thought her femininity might persuade others to lend us a jack (mine was rusted shut and my spare was flat too) but it’s amazing how many drivers are on the roads without a jack…or at least claim they are. But I suppose the three of us—Damian and Courtney and me—appeared a trio of cons. I got to listen to Damian share things he needed off his chest, and I searched for questions to ask of Courtney when Damian went off to do whatever in the three hours we three were friends.

I don’t think making these friends redeemed the situation, because who can know what I did for them and they were unable to assist me. I would have rather been home that evening still. But I wouldn’t have met Damian and Courtney otherwise, and I got to.

I learned my lesson that night: you can’t perpetually keep a leaky tire inflated. God didn’t teach me anything. He doesn’t put people in situations to teach them something. Instead, he reveals more about himself.

See, if God teaches a man to fish, the man would think he could do it on his own hence, unless he recognizes God’s provision of: the body of water, the complex food chain that grows the fish, the fire on which to cook it, the materials for the rod and lure and knife, and so on. No, had I thought God wanted me to only know I ought to periodically check on the state of my spare and jack, I wouldn’t have recognized all the what-ifs I was spared–those providential circumstances above and appreciation for meeting two people so unlike me.

– Scot Bellavia

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