I am writing the story of my life: my memoirs of the sixteen years in which God, the protagonist Hero, was preparing me to serve Him while Satan, the antagonist Villain opposed Him in every way. Here is one such incident:
Satan Meant it for Evil, but God Meant it for Good.
For four months, I worked with a crew doing seismic oil exploration in the Three Hills area. The crew was a typical, hard-drinking, wild-living bunch of roughnecks. They knew I was a Christian and was earning money to attend Bible school that fall. But they wanted no “religious talk” from me.
Just before the September long weekend, the crew chief, Stan, and his girlfriend were driving up to Edmonton. He was giving a ride to Jimmy, another guy in the crew.
“Can I ride with you as far as Red Deer?” I said. “No problem,” Stan said, “but make sure you are ready for us to pick you up at your house on Sunday. I’ll phone you to let you know what time we’ll come by.”
That Sunday afternoon Stan called, “We’ll pick you up at your house tonight at nine o’clock. Be ready.”
“Stan, I will still be at church at that time. Please pick me up there. It is only one block off your route, right near the highway. It’s much closer than my house.”
“Well, okay,” he said, but I sensed resentment in his voice.
When the car arrived, I saw that Jimmy was driving and Stan, the crew chief, was in the backseat, cuddling with his girlfriend. As I got in the front seat, Stan scolded me. “I hate you changing plans on me. And especially for making me pick you up at a church!”
I didn’t say anything, and after fussing at me some more, he turned his attention back to his girl. He had often made it plain he didn’t think much of “church people.” But something was about to interfere with this pattern of thought.
A half hour later, as we were driving down the two-lane highway at sixty miles an hour, the car ahead of us abruptly slowed down. Jimmy slammed on the brakes, and to our horror we swerved hard to the left, sliding sideways into oncoming traffic. The right front brakes on Stan’s car were defective, something Stan hadn’t warned Jimmy about. The last thing I saw through my side window before the crash was a pair of headlights only yards away.
Next thing I knew, there was glass everywhere; my left wrist was broken, and my head hurt from smashing out the side window. People ran up and helped us out of the wreck, then held us up as we stumbled to a nearby house where I sat on a couch, dazed and in pain.
A policeman came in, and after talking to the driver, asked, “Who was the front seat passenger?” I raised my good right hand. “You are a lucky guy. The door post on the hinge side, absorbed much of the impact. If the car had hit the middle of the door, you would not have survived.”
Hmm, I thought, another narrow escape, someone out there sure wants me dead, but it’s good to know Someone Else wants me alive.
Since Stan’s car was a total wreck, he worried aloud about how we were going to get to Three Hills still fifty miles away.
“I’ll phone my Dad.” I said, “He’ll be in bed, but he’ll come, pick us up and take us to Three Hills.” I phoned, and Dad came.
Arriving in Three Hills after an hour’s drive, Dad refused the money Stan wanted to give him, saying, “Jack and I are Christians, and when we help someone in trouble, it’s as if we are helping Jesus.”
With that Dad turned the car and drove home, completing a 140-mile-long demonstration of Christian love.