Author | Steve (& Austin)
I had my new cargo trailer about one week (you know – the trailer in which we would be hauling all our earthly possessions around the good ole USA for the next nine months or so?) when all of a sudden – thud, thud, thud, thud, thud…
Flat tire. Cold front was blowing through. Forty-two degrees and rain. I pulled in the first drive off the busy two-lane road. This was going to be good practice for me, and for my 14-year-old son, Austin.
At this point I need to confess something: I have quite a temper with inanimate objects like…say…a flat tire. Just saying. I know this about myself. My son also knows this. My impressionable teenage son was watching. Jesus had been doing a new thing in me recently. This was going to be a grand opportunity to trust Jesus and learn a valuable trouble-shooting skill with my son.
In record time we located the spare tire and jack and had the flat tire off the trailer. No cursing. No thrown tools. No kicking of very hard objects that tend to injure me and not them.
All that was left was to put on the spare and we’d be on our way! Austin had been a great wingman on this inaugural flat tire. He rolled the spare to me. I lined it up with the bolts of the axle. Wait a minute! What? The axle wasn’t high enough. I couldn’t get the spare on. I felt my blood pressure rising. The jack was as high as it would go.
But remember, I’m a new man. Calmly, I put the flat tire back on…
Austin: “not completely calmly, but better than usual”
…let the jack down and moved it to a new position to give me some more height. Same result. At this point I might have had a little crack in my armor.
We put the flat tire on again and moved the jack to its third position – same result. I had one last chance. I moved the jack to the very back corner of the trailer, the lowest point. If it didn’t work here, I was up a creek without a paddle. I lined up the spare. It was so close! I carefully and lovingly tried to coax that tire onto the axle.
It was no use. I couldn’t get the spare on. We needed a miracle.
That’s when I remembered my attitude when this started – an opportunity to trust Jesus rather than lose my temper (a little late – but never unredeemable). I got down on my knees next to that jack and said out loud, “Jesus, you can make this jack go a little higher.” I cranked it, and it lifted just a little. Again I said, “Jesus, you can make this jack go a little higher!” I cranked, it went up a little more. We both began to smile and laugh. I tried the tire. It needed a little more. With great gusto I proclaimed, “Jesus, you can make this jack go a little higher!” It lifted and the tire went on! There was much rejoicing! I was immediately reminded of the miracle of the floating axe-head with Elisha the prophet (2 Kings 6:1-7). Jesus even cares about the little things. All we have to do is bring them to Him! We had just witnessed a miracle!
Twenty minutes later we were standing in Discount Tire getting ready to replace the flat tire. Austin was holding the jack. I looked at Austin, both of us still smiling from what we just witnessed, and noticed that he was winding down the jack. I told him we needed to keep it extended to its fullest height so we could find a new one that would go higher.
As we stood their waiting I watched Austin extending the jack and noticed that the jack actually had a second cylinder that would extend another 4-5 inches beyond where I had been stopping. I had not seen that it was moving in a new place. I was an idiot! I could have changed that tire in the first place I had that jack! What ignorance! We both laughed deep belly laughs.
And what about the miracle?
Instead of the axe-head floating, maybe the miracle was Jesus simply overcoming my ignorance. But I think the bigger miracle that day was Jesus inviting us to call on Him about everything, even a flat tire – to realize that we are not alone in anything we experience. It actually made a difference in my attitude (though I still have some rough spots for Jesus to smooth out). It made a difference in how Austin and I acted and reacted.
Sure, it would have been cool to have experienced the miracle of the jack. But, I’m pretty stoked about Jesus helping me see Him in the little things and especially in the things that usually get my goat. Believe me, that’s a miracle (just ask Austin)!