On Earth...

In Matt. 6:10, Jesus calls us to pray with words like this: "Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth, as it is in heaven." "On earth..." messages are the reflection of various local writers sharing common experiences in daily living and then guiding renewal of the mind and spirit from God's Word. It is scheduled to appear on Wednesdays and Saturdays.

Here Am I, Send Me

Head-On Collision

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[December 15, 2007]  The family had completed a long, fun day of shopping and treasure hunting. Now, at night, we were traveling in our eight-passenger conversion van from Lincoln to Decatur. My wife and our three children were singing. The kids were bouncing around as kids will do. None of us wore seat belts. Also in the van, between the seats, was a huge wood timber that was intended to be a yard bench.

In the distance, I noticed another vehicle coming toward us. Nothing seemed unusual about its approach. As it came close enough to be illuminated by my headlights, I noticed it was also a van. The oncoming van suddenly veered into our lane, and the

Two vans hit head-on

The last thing I saw was the driver in the other the van coming directly at me, slumped over the steering wheel. The explosive impact was incredible.

The other van careened through a ditch, through a fence, into a bean field and rolled over several times. A retired policeman, who was directly behind the other van, jumped out of his car and pulled the driver out of the van, which was now in flames, saving the driver's life. Later, tests showed that the young driver was under the influence of drugs.

When the vans collided, shattered glass shot though our van. The entire driver's side of our van was totally ripped off by the collision. The tires on the left side of our van were also ripped off, and the bare rims dug into the pavement. I desperately held the steering wheel to keep it from a sudden turn, which it wanted to do. My wife had been thrown to the floor under the dash, but she saw my struggle and also grabbed the steering wheel from the floor.

Our van rolled forward with tires on one side and bare rims on the other. Our van should have rolled over like the other van. If we had had rolled over, the large timber would have done severe damage to everything inside, including my family.

Our demolished van slid to the side of the road onto a flat grassy ditch and rolled to a stop. There was a short period of silence as we looked at each other and tried to assimilate what had just happened. Finally I asked, "Are you all right? Are you all right?" Slowly, each one, after examining himself, said incredulously, "Yes, I am OK!!"

A sheriff's deputy arrived, examined the van, heard the account of what had happened from us and the retired policeman, and he just shook his head in disbelief. As we were filing the accident report, he said quietly, "Surely guardian angels were with you tonight."

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The next night as we all gathered at the dinner table, we held hands as usual to bless the food. As I looked at my family, I realized how precious they were to me and how fragile our time and existence can be. We could have all been dead, but God had miraculously protected us and kept us safe. Emotion and tears just welled up inside, and as I tried to pray all I could say was, "Godů Godů Oh, God!"

Now everybody began to cry, still holding hands and looking at each other. There was a sudden, collective realization that we were so blessed to all be together, that nobody had been lost, not even injured.

Then the words came outů "I love you." Around the table it went, each one expressing their love. Eventually, when we resumed the blessing of the food, the prayer quickly transitioned into total praise and worship to the wonderful God who had protected us.

Psalm 91:1-6 (New Living Translation)

1 Those who live in the shelter of the Most High
will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty.
2 This I declare about the Lord:
He alone is my refuge, my place of safety;
he is my God, and I trust him.
3 For he will rescue you from every trap
and protect you from deadly disease.
4 He will cover you with his feathers.
He will shelter you with his wings.
His faithful promises are your armor and protection.
5 Do not be afraid of the terrors of the night,
nor the arrow that flies in the day.
6 Do not dread the disease that stalks in darkness,
nor the disaster that strikes at midday.


[Here Am I, Send Me]

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