There are few things in life that frustrate me more than having car problems. They always seem to happen at the worst possible time. Recently my check engine light came on and I took it over to a garage that I had dealt with before. I thought I could trust them…but learned otherwise. I did not ask them what they would charge to look at my car and tell me what the problem was. Big mistake! When he gave me the bill, I was both shocked and dismayed. The bill was $108 just to diagnose the problem. I knew other garages that would have checked it out for $65, so this sent up a red flag to me. Then he handed me the suggested repairs. I nearly fainted as he told me that two O2 sensors were out and my car should not be driven further until they were replaced.
Wow. What a pickle! The tab was over $800, and I did not have that to spend as I had just shelled out $1,200 to fix our air conditioner at home. I did not stress out about it. Instead…I prayed for discernment and made several calls to other garages to see what they would charge me. Of course, they wanted to run their own diagnostics before giving me a quote…which I can understand, but I did not want to go broke on getting estimates either. So, I parked my car and borrowed my wife’s “Granny Van” till I could save up the money for further diagnostics and repairs.
I normally go to a men’s Bible study group on Saturdays, and this particular Saturday I almost did not go because my lawn was needing to be mowed and it was very hot. The earlier in the day I mow the better…but something told me I needed to go to the Bible study anyway so I went.
I had not told anyone at the group about my dilemma, but one close friend of mine came over and asked me how things were going…and I told him about my car and the gigantic bill that I had to somehow come up with. He said, “I had that very same problem on my car recently and it turned out to be a hose that cost me $40. Let me look at it and see if that is the case.” So, after the Bible study he came over to my house, popped the hood and sure enough there was a big crack in the hose that goes to the air filter! I bought the hose and a new air filter and he put them on for me. He had both the tools and the know-how which I lacked. Auto repair is NOT one of my gifts.
We were literally getting all the parts back together when I get a call from my wife. She was at Walmart and HER car would not start! LOL. I just looked up in the sky and said, “Really God?” LOL. We finished putting all the screws back into the engine and I was off to Walmart to help my wife. It was a bad battery and as soon as we gave it a jump it started right up. I swapped cars with her and took hers around the back of Walmart to the auto repair shop and got a new battery put in for her.
What a day! I thought back on all the circumstances that happened and how my friend was there for me when I needed him. I know God will bless him for his servant’s heart…as will I. The really sad part about this day was that the mechanics I thought I could trust were just smiling crooks. They had no morals or ethics and only cared about the dollar. Little did they know that I had planned on doing some major work on both vehicles with them in the near future, but that business will never be done with them at this point. The moral to the story:
- When you have a gut check about something that someone is telling you…LISTEN. Don’t ignore that little voice telling you that something is not right. If you don’t have peace about it, there is a good reason and you need to find out what is wrong.
- Don’t make rash decisions just because there is an apparent emergency. Slow down, pray about it…and seek advice from trusted advisors.
- Wait on God. That is probably one of the hardest things for me to do, and yet when I do, He does things for me that only He can do…and He makes no mistakes! I just have to trust Him and HIS timing.
- It was not an accident that I was compelled to go to the Bible study even when I had other things I needed to do. It was not an accident that my friend was there and had the perfect solution for me at a price I could afford. It was not an accident that my wife was at Walmart when her car broke down. I literally had to just drive it around the corner of the building to get it fixed.
Did I like doing all of this on a hot August day in Texas? No. I would much rather be indoors watching a movie and munching on some popcorn, but that is life. We have our days to watch movies and our days in the sun. We can expect to have them both; just don’t stress out when things get a little crazy. Take a deep breath, pray, trust God, and wait. You will endure the heat much better if you learn the secret of chilling.
P.S. I still mowed my lawn while I was waiting for my friend to come over.
P.S.S. I do know that you can take your car to Auto Zone or O’Reilly’s and get a free diagnostic on the check engine light, but that does not tell the whole story. A qualified mechanic has to look at it to see what is really going on. This is a perfect example. The free diagnostic said I had two O2 sensors not working, but what I needed was to replace a cracked hose! Shalom!