When i was in high school, i remember being required to take an ASVAB test. I don't remember what ASVAB stands for right off, but as far as i could tell, this was the chance for the Armed Services to look into American high schools and see who of the upcoming soon-to-be adults would be ideal for recruitment into which of the Armed Services.
I also remember sometime after taking the ASVAB, receiving recruitment mail from the Air Force. Apparently i had tested well in the mechanical questions. "If gear A turns counterclockwise, which way will gear B turn?" and so forth. The Air Force wanted me to be a mechanic.
Well, i never went into the Air Force, or any other armed service or mechanically inclined profession, and i am learning that natural intelligence is not very useful if not trained.
My car has been riding funny for about a week. A little wobbly. A little shaky. A little noisy.
My husband remembered me hitting a curb in a parking lot during our vacation and thought perhaps we needed our tires balanced. So we made plans for me to go to my favorite tire store, Discount Tire, on Monday (yesterday) to get it checked out. That was last week.
On Sunday, James and i went out to lunch after church, and as we were pulling out of the parking lot, i noticed that the car was riding way worse than a little wobbly. I found a cleared parking area, hubby got out and immediately noticed my front driver's side tire was completely flat. Just like that. It had been riding unevenly and actually wore a hole in the tire. Discount Tire isn't open on Sunday, so we rode over to Wal-mart on our donut and paid a lot more than tires used to cost for a new tire. Am i getting old? I also remember paying 89 cents a gallon for gas, and that's in my adult and married life. That sounds just about as real as a nickel for a coke, doesn't it?
The car rode a lot better after we got the new tire, but it still wasn't quite right, so i still planned to go to Discount Tire after work on Monday.
Monday morning comes. I'm surprised at how nicely the car is riding. But as my i progress on my 35 ish mile commute to work, it rides a little less nicely. Progressively less nicely. Nothing in my mechanically inclined mind understands why this is happening. Haven't heard of progressively unbalanced tires, but whatever.
After work, i notice that my steering wheel jerks to the left at about every tire rotation as i leave the parking garage. Nothing occurs to my mechanically inclined mind now either.
When i get to Discount Tire, i tell the young man helping me that "i think i might've run over a curb or something." Because i like to sound especially intelligent when i get work done on my car.
"You might've run over a curb? You don't know?" the smarty pants asks me.
I give the guy my keys so he can go take down my car stats and measure how many centimeters of tread i have left on my tires, and then he shows me something that made me ill on a number of levels.
The reason my steering wheel had been jerking to the left every tire rotation -- the reason that my ride had become progressively less nice on the way to work, was a giant tire bubble forming on my front passenger side tire, getting ready to pop. Or blow out as they say.
I sent a picture to my husband, who pointed out that that tire had at least 3 1/2 miles left on it.
At first, i was sick because of the amount of money i was about to have to spend on yet another new tire.
But after i had gone through the rigmarole of getting the best price (this is accomplished by giving the fella a sincerely uncomfortable look, accompanied by "is that the best you can do?" comments until he comes up with something you can live with), coughing up the dough, etc., i kept imagining myself tossed into some ditch in the middle of the nowhere that is my country road commute after having my bubble tire pop unexpectedly while driving 70 mph down hilly, windy, narrow country roads.
And i got really thankful.
And cried some.
This isn't really a boring car story. O.k., it kind of is. But more, it's a gratefulness story.
My Father God knew about my tire, even if my ASVAB mechanical intelligence score wasn't proving helpful to me. He made so that we had money to buy two unexpected new tires without losing the farm. He provided for everything. He saved my life when i wasn't even looking. And He even made it go easily. I had to do very little.
God is faithful.
Faithful in all the boring parts of our lives. All the mundane stuff.