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Roadside Assistance

My sister asked me to come over and change a tire for her last week. Reluctantly, I went because that’s what all little brothers do for their big sisters while their husbands are away.

“Siri, how do you change a tire?”

Don’t judge me. It’s 2017; roadside assistance is a thing.

Twenty minutes later (with the jack falling once), my sister had a beautiful spare accenting the driver’s side of her Toyota! I felt rather accomplished.

Fast forward a day.

There is a neighborhood between the meeting I was coming from and our office. To save time, I cut through. That’s where I met Betty.

Betty is a middle-aged woman who was preventing me from turning at a stop sign because she was rolling a whole 2 mph. Upon the prolonged completion of her turn, I noticed that Betty wasn’t being a ridiculous driver as a result of her own volition, but was minding a flat tire.

I pulled up beside her and asked if she needed the help of my newly minted skills. She replied, “Desperately.” We parked in a cul-de-sac and I helped Betty get on her way with a spare.

What a coincidence! I just learned how to change a spare the day before.

During our time together, I learned that Betty was on her way to quit one of her jobs and mentioned that life wasn’t really going well right now. With such, I imagine there was a feeling of hopelessness as she inched through the neighborhood, helplessly searching for a good Samaritan. And imagine the feeling of vulnerability as a stranger sorted her belongings in the grass to reach the spare tire in the trunk.

I don’t tell you any of this to make myself a hero. I’m definitely not. Changing a tire isn’t difficult and I hope any one of you would have stopped to help a neighbor in need. I tell you this because though this seems like a coincidence, it simply isn’t.

Lately, I’ve been praying for God to remind me of His presence in the midst of stress I’ve been experiencing. A simple reminder would have done, but is simple really God’s style? I never find myself with my sleeves rolled up next to a car and I’m definitely not the first (or third) one you’d ask for mechanical advice.

From my perspective, it’s a privilege that God showed up in my life by having me show up in someone else’s. We talk a lot about relationships at Ashley Ridge Church and God is continually showing me what it means to be there for people, having known them for a long time or having met them out of annoyance at a stop sign.

Start showing up for people and see how God moves in you. Sometimes it’s a spare tire but other times it’s adopting a child or delivering a meal. We get to be part of this story with God and I can’t wait to see the ways God shows up for you by showing up through your showing up for others.

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