It was summer time. I could hear the church bells ringing from the old church and they both soothed me and filled me with tranquility. It was already getting warm as the kids and I got ready for church. We had recently moved and were still settling into our new home. Our life had been quite tumultuous in the months past, so the old country farmhouse we moved into on the church property served a safe and peaceful refuge. But more than that, we had learned that God was our true refuge and source of strength. As a result of the constant churning in our lives, I carried my pocket Bible with me wherever I went. It was my security and reminder that I was not alone.
It was on our way to our own home church that something caught my eye as we sped quickly down the Interstate. A glimpse of what appeared to be paper tumbled down the freeway behind our car. It struck me, oddly, but I didn’t think much of it at the time. When we got to church, we all got out of the car. I grabbed my purse and reached for my Bible and notebook, which were usually together in the console of the car. I couldn’t find them and figured I must have forgotten them. How strange I thought, didn’t I bring them out to the car?
Midway through the church service an alarming thought came to my mind. That object, I saw in the side mirror of my car, could it have been my Bible? This thought caused a sense of panic to well up within me. It was then that I remembered setting my Bible and notebook on the roof of the car as I helped my kids get situated and seat belted in. Was my Bible lying along the freeway somewhere? It was difficult getting through the rest of the service and focusing on the pastor’s message that morning. As soon as it ended, we drove home and went inside the house, searching. I hoped my hunch was wrong. I wanted to find my Bible and notebook left behind absent mindedly on the kitchen counter, or anywhere else for that matter, but safely in the house. As I searched, my heart sank. I lost my Bible, was all that kept going through my head. My journey with the Lord had been recorded on those very pages. Dates and events marking life changing moments and things the Lord had told me to focus on were listed inside that Book of Life. How could I possibly get through a day without this Book that was my Lifeblood and Source of Truth and Strength from the Lord? I threw myself on my bed with a sigh. I felt an intense sense of loss come over me.
I had to go look. I had to go see. Was it getting smeared on the highway? The thought of having to drive by my splattered Bible on a daily basis, tore at my heart. Not only would I have to get by without it, but would I have to look at it like dead road pizza being continually obliterated until it was part of the road? That was it. That thought was too much for me to bear. We had to go look. I decided to drive the route we had taken that day to church. I would drive slowly and the kids and I would scan the road and ditches along the way for any signs of my Bible or notebook. What about the freeway though, if it is there, what will I do, I thought? It is just me and my kids. Stopping alongside the Interstate is always considered dangerous even without getting out and retrieving something from the road. I prayed and committed this situation to the Lord.
As we drove our prior route, there was no sign of my Bible or notebook on the roads leading to the Interstate. As we merged onto the freeway, there, straight ahead was something. The pages were blowing, as it was spread wide open. I immediately pulled over and slowly backed up to a point where it was in front of my car. It was my Bible. It was on the shoulder of the freeway. Now what, I thought. I couldn’t leave it there. I looked in my rear view mirror. Surprisingly, there was not a car to be seen. The freeway was completely empty and void of all cars. I had to go for it. I had to get it. I jumped out of the car and sprinted quickly, knowing that what I was doing was not the best or safest idea especially with my children waiting in the car alongside the freeway. I grabbed the Bible and made my way back to my car. Just then a pickup truck merged onto the freeway from the onramp. That was it though. That was the only car.
I brought my Bible home, shocked and amazed that I found it and was able to retrieve it safely from the freeway without playing some sort of game of chicken. I was awed that the Lord cleared the highway for me and that my Bible was entirely whole. It had black tire tread marks across some of the pages and there were a few rips and tears, but the damage was minuscule. To my amazement, not a single page was missing. It had been lying on the freeway for over two hours and had surely been run over more than once by the proof imprinted on the pages.
To this day, it is hard for me to believe my precious Bible was lying on the freeway and had possibly been flattened by eighteen wheelers and oblivious drivers. God knew how precious His Book was to me. He knew how I hung onto His Word…literally. How it was the last thing I read at bed time and the first thing I reached for upon waking.
The kids and I never did find my missing notebook. There was another object we noticed a couple days later during our commute on the Interstate. It was in the form of mashed up paper. Was it my notebook? It was unidentifiable. Smeared, smashed, and mutilated. It was just a pile of rubbish, a spot on the road.
God is Alive. God is Great and Mighty is He. God’s Word is our Instruction Book for living life. I lost my notebook and I lost my Bible, at the same time. The notebook is gone, possibly completely decimated within hours of being on the Interstate. My Bible, the Word of God, found lying on the side of the freeway is completely intact and strong as ever.
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