jumping back to the temporary orders hearing
we had a long day ahead of us, many things to do.
documents to collect
and then court.
I had an agenda- complete with times and maps. My Plan.
Every single item on that list went as planned. Down to the minute. 12 errands. Down to the minute- how often has that EVER happened in your life? EVER?
Every single time, I felt God tug on my heart.
This is so you trust me.
You need to trust me right now.
Last item: picking up my witnesses and driving to court- one hour away.
There are two roads to court. If you take one, it is 45 minutes to backtrack to the other.
It is an either/or situation.
We chose either, and at the very end of the road- right before it reconnected with the freeway- there was an accident.
I looked at the clock.
30 minutes until court.
If I am not there, I forfeit, and he gets everything he wants.
I lose the kids.
I lose custody.
It is impossible to go the other way and make it.
If we wait for the accident to clear, it could be hours- what do we do?
I start to feel desperate.
How is it possible?
How is this possible?
How can EVERYTHING today have gone completely on schedule and THIS goes wrong?
This makes everything else pointless!
Did I leave an abuser just to lose due to an accident?
My mind races, and the others in the car start to panic.
After some debate, we decide to turn back and go the other way.
The clock keeps ticking.
Court is approaching.
I try to stay calm.
It is so far away!
How is it possible?
How is this possible?
My mind cycles in useless circles, retracing the day, trying to find my error.
There was no error. This was completely out of control. The plan was perfect.
MY PLAN WAS PERFECT.
THIS was GOD'S plan.
Every passing second imprints itself in our bones, deeply and painfully building the tension.
We make it to the city with five minutes to spare- but then need to find the courthouse.
There is a cop right in front of us!!
We follow him in, he does the speed limit the whole time.
I am having trouble describing this moment.
Everything was on the line, and everything was out of my control.
Nothing was working.
The cop in front of us was going exactly 25 mph.
The clock threatened to hit the time, 4 minutes.
We knew we were more than 4 minutes away.
I couldn't think, panicking,
I was in the car. Shaking. My whole body quaked with the fear, caved to the anxiety.
I stared desperately at the clock, and could not stop screaming prayers.
And when I say screaming, I mean screaming.
In front of my mother.
In front of my witnesses,
with total reckless abandonment,
the car echoed with my pleas.
I need more faith God, I need more faith. Your will, Lord, your will... I need more faith, please more faith. You have been with us all day, building up for something. I know you are working on something big. I need more faith. Please, give me more faith.
Over and over again, I begged and pleaded for faith, for patience, to understand His will.
I pleaded as the clock hit time, and we weren't still there.
The prayers turned to sobs.
Please, God, don't let it happen like this. Please, I need more faith. I can't understand, I am trying to understand. Why bring us this far? I need more faith, Lord, I need more faith.
Finally, we turn into the courthouse, and before the car is parked, I am bolting up the steps to the courthouse.
I get in the elevator, breathless, face streaked with tears, disheveled.
I look to my right
They were late too.
Exactly, to the second, as late as we were.
I get upstairs, and the court had not started yet. I had a chance to go in the bathroom, clean up, and collect my witnesses again.
Later, in the court room...
My witness to that day, the one who had helped me leave, was on the stand.
His attorney was drilling her about my mental state at the time.
She was saying I was afraid and very distraught.
The attorney pointed out I could just be upset, like any other person who has just fought with her husband.
My witness stops for a second.
Then she smiles and says, "No. I know her. She is never upset like this. I have known her for years, and never seen her cry or yell. Today, in the car, she was upset. I saw upset. I saw anger. I saw her pounding her fists on the dash, screaming at God. I saw different things that day. This was not anger, this was not a normal fight."
God whispered in my heart, All things for a reason, child. Have faith. I was there the whole time. This needed to happen just as it did.
The judge understood the distinction, we won the trial.
I walked away with everything I asked for.
Now, since then, I think of car accidents as a metaphor.
Sometimes God uses awful moments to His good.
Without that car accident, sent at just the exact right (or wrong?) time, my witness would have stumbled and the case could have been lost due to a manipulative attorney. Instead, God had given her a direct illustration of what she had seen and not seen.
HIS timing was PERFECT.
HIS plan was PERFECT.
We had a safe, uneventful trip back.
I believe there might even have been wine when we got home.
God blesses us with car accidents and wine.