Good husbands really are a good thing.
The children had run out of a few things that they desperately needed. Or so they kept saying. Monday was already packed but when they were in such desperate need, what could I do but fit in a trip to the store. Coming out with my cart full of groceries I looked lovingly at my car, thinking how much I loved the old junker. There’s no need to worry about parking carefully so she doesn’t get scratched and it’s nice to be able to leave windows down and doors unlocked when it’s hot out. No one would think there could be anything to steal in that old thing. And they’d be right.
Then I got in and started her.
The thunking and banging as the motor sprang to life was shocking. I thought at first there might be a mouse in the fan. Again. Got the air-conditioning shut off and the noise didn’t stop. Oh dear. Now I wasn’t feeling quite so proud of my old dear. It’s somehow more embarrassing to have car trouble when you know people will be judging you for the old piece of junk you drive. Popping the hood, and carefully holding it open because it no longer holds itself, I peered into the engine.
Not sure what I thought I’d be able to find. I know nothing about cars. In this case, the trouble was obvious and I actually was able to pinpoint it!
The belt. It was coming to pieces. Strips were coming off. As they banged around hitting everything in their path as the belt made it’s loop, they were the cause of the racket. It was also splitting the other way, cracks running across the short way. This didn’t bode well for the long drive home through a large area with no cell service.
I called my husband.
He was very busy. Mondays at work are always hectic. He was not quite as far away as home was. But almost.
He advised a little trimming. I tried that. It silenced the noise, and maybe without the extra flapping and added damage I could make a run for home? As I drove off I asked God to please not let the car die where there was no phone service. Back to our town would be nice. I wasn’t asking to make it all the way home. Just closer and not in a bad spot. Please, if he didn’t mind.
By the time I got out of the parking lot it was obvious home was not going to happen. The belt was falling apart fast and the racket was back to full volume. So I pulled into Runza. Parked and called my husband. Again. He would take care of me. And he did. Borrowing tools from a friend in town he called around and found a new belt, then started driving. I waited contentedly in the parking lot, after going in and getting a drink. He picked up parts and met me. We had lunch together. Then it took him all of five minutes to replace the belt.
Our cars have never died in a bad place. It’s always things like this. The best possible of a bad situation. Once we got off a train and got in the old car we had at the time, well after midnight middle of winter. The car started up and drove us the rest of the way home. Then would never start again. But it waited until we got home. This time God said, um, no. You can’t try to drive that home. How about this instead? I asked Him not to let it die in a bad place, and He didn’t. He also got me a very nice lunch with my wonderful husband.
I’m not sure how people survive without good husbands like this. Men who can fix anything, who take care of all the things despite already being loaded with responsibilities and a heavy workload. I have a father and brother and even a son, young still but well on his way, who are the same way. Hard working, loving, taking care of their families no matter what. The good men out there are one of God’s best gifts to us. Even better than cars that always die in the best places.