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A Fuse, a Spark Plug and a Car Warranty

Good morning. It is Wednesday, March 2, 2022. Jeanette Stark here.

It was December 1985. Wendell and I and our two boys were traveling to Disneyland. The trip took the place of presents under a tree. My thinking was, it’s Christmas Day, everyone will be home with their families. I was wrong! Turns out, Christmas is one of the busiest days at Disneyland! We were elbow-to-elbow with people all day long, in fact, 17 hours! We walked in at 8am Christmas Day and walked out at 1am the next morning. We were all dragging, but memories were made, fun was had and that was my goal.

On our return trip we took a detour and headed east to Lakeview Oregon where my aunt and uncle lived. The roads were covered in snow, Wendell was tired from driving, and would stop from time to time to rub snow on his face, but we made it. We stayed the night and visited and enjoyed great meals. More great memories were made, and we arrived safely home a few days after leaving.

The one thing I did not mention was that my car had no heater. California weather was doable, but Oregon, and especially Lakeview, was extremely cold that time of year. We all had blankets to wrap around us while we traveled. I had gloves and a cap and even bundled up; I was still cold. In that respect it was a bit of a miserable trip.

You see, I had not had heat in my car for close to 2 years. Wendell had looked at it but could find nothing wrong. I did not have the money to take it to a mechanic, and so, I lived with it; I became used to it.

One day a friend asked Wendell, “have you checked the fuse?” Fuse? “Yes, this model of car has a fuse box under the glove compartment.” He got down under the glove box and pulled out a fuse box and sure enough, a fuse was burnt. A one-dollar fuse was all it took to bring heat back to my car. I could not believe I had driven in misery for 2 winters when the fix was so simple. Freezing temperatures, fogged up windows, chattering teeth…all over one little fuse.

I think many people deal with problems in their life just like I dealt with the lack of heat in my car. At first you wonder what the problem is. You may seek help from a friend or family member. They do not know how to help. You decide trying to fix your problem is just too big, it will cost too much, and so you live with it. You live with it long enough and it becomes common to you.

Romans 12:2 “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” NKJV

I think many people look at God like that. I know I have been there. It feels too big to change my behavior, too big to change the music I listen to, too big to do what I know is right. I cannot do this on my own and there is no way God can help and yet all it takes is one little whisper “Let me fix you.”

James 1:5 “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him.” NKJV

I have had a Jeep for close to 2 years. It does this weird little “stutter” when I am driving, especially when I accelerate, like the transmission is acting up. I bought it simply so that I could get off my property and get to work when it was snowing. I have not driven it much but each time I drive it, I think, I really need to get that checked. But in true Jeanette-style, I kept putting it off. I purchased an extended warranty with the Jeep when I bought it. My oldest son came down for my birthday last week and reminded me that if I don’t use the warranty, it expires, and I get nothing. Before Wendell passed away this was something I would count on him to take care of, but now it is up to me to be responsible.

Finally, this past Monday, I called Tom’s Auto in Grants Pass. Wendell had dealt with Tom’s many times over the years and always commented on what a nice man he was and honest and fair. Tom no longer runs the shop, but his son does, and he got me in yesterday morning to check it out. Of course, I was imagining the worst: transmission.

He called me a few hours later, and long story short, it was the spark plugs! I had my vehicle back by the end of the day. All it took was $30 in spark plugs, plus one hour of shop labor and my problem was solved. I have been putting this off, dreading the worst and once again, it turns out to be a simple fix.

Sometimes we look at our life’s problems and wonder how they will ever be solved. We forget that God is bigger than our problems. We forget about that warranty or guarantee that Jesus paid for at the cross.

Philippians 4:13 “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” NKJV

What are you wrestling with today? Does it feel too big for you to handle? Does it feel like the cost will be too great? Take it to God. Matthew 7:7 tells us “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.” NKJV

It is the worry of the unknown that prevents us from acting so much of the time, but God is just waiting to be invited into our lives to help. “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” Psalm 46:1 NKJV

Whatever that “thing” is that keeps you down, ask Jesus for help. Whatever is broken in your life, Jesus can fix it. Call upon Him now for the strength you need. Ask Him to fix the problems in your life and then step out of the way and watch Him work.

“Now may the God of peace who brought up our Lord Jesus from the dead, that great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, make you complete in every good work to do His will, working in you what is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.” Hebrews 13:20-21 NKJV

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