Today I got a lesson in trusting God... a big lesson. I was driving some friends home from the Airport.. they live in a fairly rural part of the Bay Area, about an hour from my house. When I dropped them off at home, there was less than a quarter tank of Gas left in my van, certainly not enough to get home on. (The van is my husband's car. Normally I drive our other car (a two seater) but I borrowed the van from hubby to drive this couple and their luggage home.) There was one gas station that I passed between their house and the freeway enterence. I was going to stop there for gas, but the Lord told me, "No, not there."
I figured there was some reason that He did not want me to go to that particular station, so I got on the freeway. There was one regular town before we hit the rural stretch of the road. After that town, it would be a long drive to the exit that had a next gas station. I figured I had enough gas to make it to that town. When I got to the town, the gas indicator was on "empty". I breathed a sigh of relief that I made it to an exit with a gas station and was about to pull off. God told me something I really did not want to hear.. He told me "Do not get off the freeway to get gas here."
"But Lord," I argued, "there aren't any more gas stations for about 20 miles... and I'm on empty. How can I possibly not get gas here.. it would be irresponsible. And I would get stranded on this road in the middle of 'nowhere'." It was getting dark and that could be danerous.
"Teresa, I want you to trust Me and obey Me. I want you to go to the gas station near your house." He indicated one that I knew, which was right off the freeway and only a few miles from my house. This whole scenario was very counter-intuitive. "Don't get off the freeway until you get there. Trust Me."
An alarming thought hit me... what if that was not God's voice? What if it was the enemy immitating God's voice to get me to do something foolish. What if the enemy wanted to get me stranded along the road where something dangerous/bad could easily happen to me. After all, the enemy had told Jesus to jump off the top of the temple, and Jesus refused to play into His hands. What if this was something similar. So, I told God about my concern.
"Teresa, you know My voice. And you know that I am trustworthy enough that I would correct you if you purposed to obey in your heart but it wasn't realy Me you were obeying. Can you trust Me?"
I hate it when He asks me that question! He always takes me out of my comfort zone. Sigh. I drove past the last gas exit off-ramp for about 20 miles, glancing at my "empty" fuel indicator.
"God, I sure hope this is You!"
I guess you could say that my act of obedience was "trusting God", but I sure did find myself praying earnestly the whole 20 miles until I reached the gas station He had indicated. I was literally surprised to make it there... (some woman of faith, huh!).
"Oh THANK YOU LORD!" I prayed as I pulled into the closest pump. No other cars were at the station right then, and it was one of those automated stations where you use a credit card and do it all yourself... I got out of the van to add gas.. and realised I had to go back to the car and push a latch to open the gas tank cover. Since it was my husband's car that I almost never drove, I had never added gas to it before. Well, I began to search all the usual places for that little "gas cover release level" and could not find it anywhere. I spent a good 10 minutes searching for it.. where could they possibly hide that thing? Finally I resorted to prayer. I asked God to help me find it or to send someone along to show me where it was. Then God spoke to me.
"Teresa," when you were wanting to stop at those other gas stations, there was a trap laid for you there. You did not know where the gas cover release was, and the enemy had dangerous traps laid for you at both of the other gas stations... you would have been a bit of a sitting duck because could not find the lever to open the gas tank so you could add your gas. That was why I told you to trust Me and keep driving... and I brought you to a safe place."
"Thank you Lord," I said. "But it would have been a lot easier for me if you explained to me what was going on instead of just asking me to trust and obey."
"Teresa, there will be times in the future where your very life hangs on obeying me and trusting me to know what I am doing. Consider this a dry run (or training) for that time. I don't want to have to take time to reason with you when timely obedience is of the upmost urgency. I want you conditioned to instantly obey Me because you trust Me."
As soon as He finished speaking to me, a car drove up to the pump next to me. It was a sports car with a good looking fellow in his early twenties. I asked him if he could help me find the gas release... he had a bit of trouble locating it too.. then found it. He explained that it was on the floor, near the seat, and that the floormat was concealing it. I got my gas and went safely home.
But I had learned an important lesson... God did not find it necessary to explain to me why He wanted me to do something, He simply expected me to obey Him and trust that He has a good reason for telling me to do something.
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