It was dusk as I drove on the lonely highway through the woodsy countryside. My two young children were in the car with me, and I was watching the road before me carefully for the deer that so often frequented the area. As I drove on and the sun slipped below the horizon, my children dozed in their car seats. I began to pray in a whisper and spent this rare quiet time with God. Every mother of young children knows these moments can be few and far between. I prayed as the miles slipped by and the darkness around me deepened. I was going to visit my newly widowed mother again, and was quite familiar with the five-plus hour drive between my home and hers. I had purposed since my father’s death to visit her at least once each month, despite the inconvenience of the long drive with small children. I knew she needed encouragement, and my girls brought such joy to her broken heart. Many times, she had warned me about the many car-deer accidents on that last stretch of road, and not to travel in the dark. But, I had gotten a late start this time.
I began to notice that fog seemed to be creeping out of the woods and onto the highway. As the miles rolled on, the fog thickened. Now I wasn’t praying just to pass the time and for the rare pleasure of personal time with God, but I was in a dense fog and crying out to the Lord for help, albeit in a whisper. The fog became like a thick shroud around my vehicle and I could no longer see the white line on the road beside my van. I literally couldn’t see an exit where I could pull off, not that there were any on this rural road. As fear threatened on every side, I prayed in my heart for the Lord’s intervention. I was praying that no deer would appear in a flash out of the fog. I was praying for our safety and protection.
In the stillness of that dark night, suddenly He spoke. It was as if a small-still voice whispered back to me out of the quiet of my heart and said, “Trust in the Lord with all of your heart, and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He shall make your path straight.” That memorized Bible verse from Proverbs 3:5-6 came to me out of seemingly nowhere, as I drove on into what appeared to be a blank, white slate before my headlights. Over and over I heard it, “Trust in the Lord with all of your heart….” And then the same voice whispered a question into the quiet of my heart, “Janet, do you trust me?” The question caused me to wonder whether I really trusted God. I honestly replied in a whispered prayer, “Lord, I want to trust you. Help me!” At that moment, the near-panic began to recede as a palpable sense of the Lord’s presence began to descend upon me. I remembered God’s calling and promises over my life and my children’s lives. It was if He was present there in that moment and His peace began to wrap around me as I drove on. I was certain that He was with us in the fog bank.
(Photo courtesy of www.unsplash.com, Nicole Mason.)