All I could see as I slowly eased my car down a rural highway was white. From the field on the left, across the road, and to the field on the right lay a solid, unbroken blanket of snow. I was alone at the moment, but what if other traffic joined me? All the road markings were hidden under the snow and I had no idea where the lanes were. I decided to follow the tire tracks left by an preceding vehicles and hope for the best.
At first, I drove very slowly, but as I became more comfortable, I began to increase my speed. The road was smooth, and my 4-wheel drive was doing an excellent job maintaining traction. Besides, we would never make our destination before dark if we had to drive the whole 350 miles at 30 MPH.
Everything was fine for a few minutes, but after reaching 40 MPH, I felt my tires slip and we began sliding sideways.
“What do I do?” I asked my husband as terror filled me. I gripped the steering wheel with both hands as the back end of my car slid in increasingly wide swerves. I had heard about fishtailing, but this was the first time I had experienced it. Living most of my life in Florida meant having no experience with snow, and I couldn’t remember which way to turn the wheel.
“Take your foot off the accelerator,” my husband said, trying to be calm.
“I already have,” I responded. “Should I step on the brake?”
“Maybe,” he said, then got quiet. I knew he must be praying.
But strangely, I had no desire to move either of my feet. Instead, I focused on holding the steering wheel, turning it as best I could, thankful that there were no other cars on the road this early in the morning, and praying that no other cars would show up. As the back end of my car slid from one side of the road to the other in ever increasing arcs, each time coming closer to the edge of the snow, I also prayed we wouldn’t end up stranded in the middle of one of the fields that surrounded us. “Lord, please stop this car in a safe place.”
After what felt like an hour but was probably less than five minutes, my car slowly came to a stop in the middle of the road. Trembling now that the experience was over, I turned to my husband. “Okay. I can check fishtailing off my list. I never want to do that again.”
He laughed and agreed. “Better stay slow until the sun has a chance to melt the snow off this road.”
More cautiously than before, I touched the accelerator and started moving forward. No longer concerned about the time it would take to get to our destination, I was content to drive the entire 350 miles at 30 MPH if necessary.
As I inched down the road, I puzzled about how, despite my lack of experience, I had done everything right. Or maybe it hadn’t been me. I couldn’t explain why I felt no need to move my feet, nor how I was able to keep the car from spinning out of control. It had to be the Lord. He had been in control when I wasn’t.
I’m still in awe today, four months later, of how God had kept us safe on the almost deserted snow-covered road in the middle of nowhere. He is an amazing God!
Psalm 91:14 “Because he holds fast to me in love, I will deliver him; I will protect him, because he knows my name.
Psalm 5:11b and spread your protection over them, that those who love your name may exult in you.