My Father's Hand of Providence - Part I

In the early 1990's (which may as well have been the late 1800's from my children's perspective), I set out after college graduation and moved to Dallas.

Big D!
I'm not sure why.

I just knew that I wanted to be there, and I loved it from the second I arrived. 

My arrival, however, into my soon-to-be, 20-plus-years hometown looked a little different than most. It looked something like this...

  1. My car was a 1982 Datsun (yeah, they don't make those anymore) Nissan B-210 hatchback. Complete with "fins" on top, which was probably meant, in the seventies, to make your car look groovier. It wasn't enough that my old Datsun was a lovely shade of faded pale baby blue and donned ONE burgundy red, left front fender. It was also "equipped" with a metal stick shift that had been shuffled around so many times the rubbery base had become worn. The torn, ragged faux leather served as a "window" of sorts... one that looked right onto the passing asphalt below! Carbon monoxide fumes could trail in at will. And, the lack of air conditioning during 100-degree Texas heat was even more daunting. It's no small wonder I didn't end up passing out from fumes/heat or both.
  2. I had amassed a grand total of approximately $400 in my bank account, which was the value of everything my poor, retired, self-sacrificing mother could possibly pawn in order to help me get the heck of out of dusty, desert, I'm-gonna-die-here-alone-with-no-job land, also known as West Texas. 
  3. I had no job. Yet.
  4. I had 2 friends (one from high school and one from college) who were willing to allow me to encroach upon their personal space for one week each.
  5. Every possession I owned was in the back of my sleek 200,000+ miles-on-the-odometer clunker. Note: This did not include a bed, table/chairs, couch, dishes, etc.

To make a super long blog post shorter, within a week's time—a week during which there was one day of completely icy roads and zero job hunting—God miraculously secured a temp-to-perm position for me within the marketing department of a very well-known cosmetics corporation. My income would be slow but steady.

By the time the following week rolled around, I had moved to the second friend's apartment and was obliviously anticipating a phone call regarding the outcome of my mother's angiogram. Much to my shock and dismay, the procedure confirmed multiple blockages in her heart.  

Needless to say, much was happening in my personal life with respect to my mother's physical condition and my sense of helplessness being so far away from her (she subsequently passed away three weeks later). Yet, some way, somehow, God, as He always has, placed just the right people on my path, and His providence in which I'd placed my child-like faith began pouring down like manna from heaven. Day by day.

From the lady in the cubicle next to mine who offered to give me a small sleeper sofa, to the young lady whose fellow church members loaned me TWO twin beds, to the young gentleman (whose name I don't even know to this day) who just knocked on my door one day and asked if I wanted his table/chairs, I was continually overwhelmed by God's sovereign provision and care for little old me!

Six hours away, as my mother lay dying in a hospital bed with a breathing tube down her throat, and my earthly father was held captive by Alzheimer's in a nursing home, my Heavenly Father was there with me. Guiding. Directing. Protecting. Securing. Providing.

Twenty-five years later, it's a bit distressing to write this all out, let alone imagine someone else going through a similar (or even worse) situation. And yet, it's bittersweet. For, all of the things I could not see, HE foresaw! And, all of the things I did not know, HE foreknew!

Oh, child of God, who has put your faith in Jesus as your Savior and Lord of your life, hold firm. He didn't promise excellent health or unending wealth or a wedding with a mom/dad by your side or a life with more than one grandparent to cherish. But, He did say this:

"I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.
~John 16:33

Thank you, Jesus.