August was the month of panic…car bills month! MOT on the Vauxhall Astra, road tax for both cars and the breakdown insurance. Yes, I know, we’re lucky to have two cars and breakdown insurance, but we do live in a rural setting and are both self-employed, so it’s a bit of a necessity.
It’s not as if I didn’t know it was coming, or that I could have done anything to prepare for it anyway…Wendy and I live pretty much from month to month income-wise at present, and are often very conscious of our dependence on God for rent, bills and food.
The month started well. A ‘brown envelope’ was left in the hands of the St Aidan statue that lives in our porch. This doesn’t happen very often…thank you to the anonymous giver. We stocked the larder and ate for the month because of your gift. So was God going to provide as miraculously for the car bills?
As I waited for the miracle of a large gift, several smaller ‘gifts’ came my way. Suddenly several of my computer customers had problems with their machines, some software, some hardware, most time consuming…sorry computer manufactureres but if the rumoured ‘August bug’, intended to drive purchasers towards new computers in the autumn, really exists, this year it simply enabled me to pay my bills!
But, then the MOT came along, and it seemed that my aging Astra Estate, which has given more than faithful service over about 8 years, had finally reached the end of the road…double panic! I remembered the words of the garage owner after last MOT…”All done. It should last you another year.”
I even found that for three anxious days and nights I could not even speak to the person I needed to speak to…had his experience of testing my Astra been so awful he had been forced to take time off? Was he avoiding telling me the awful truth?
On the third day, early in the morning, I finally caught up with him. He clearly did not know about the sense of doom with which his employee had communicated the state of my car, nor about my state of anguish, as he calmly said, “I’m sure we can fix it…wait a minute I’ll give you a price”… It came in within my budget! The resurrection of the Astra was assured, at least for another year.
As I reflected on the whole thing, my unfailing capacity to panic not trust once again stared me in the face. I was amused by the way God provided for the car bills…no gifts or handouts, but through the work of my hands (although I do find it something of a ‘coincidence’ that just the right amount of computer work suddenly appeared). God is good, and the people who listen to God’s whispers are so good too.
But…I am left wondering…do garages plant a sort of ‘car virus’, intended to go off when you’ve had your ‘another year‘ out of them, and just around MOT time…:-)
* Per ardua ad astra – through adversity to the stars