125 mph

For the first several days of this week, I was down in Dallas, working on Monday with one client, and then 2 additional days with another great team I assist. I returned home late last evening and got back to the regular routine in Indy this morning.

As you probably already know, I watch some of my favorite shows on the road – primarily because Janet doesn’t really share my passion for some of the stuff I enjoy. Anyway, on Tuesday evening, I noticed that there was a marathon on the Discovery Channel – for one of the shows that I periodically watch. It’s called Chasing Classic Cars. Simply put, it’s a series of stories about a man who enjoys the hunt for all kinds of unusual automobiles. Many of them are high performance cars, while others are just plain classics. The marathon went on well into the wee hours of the morning and I actually fell asleep with the TV on.

Before I fell asleep, I was reminded of one of the cars that my best friend, Bob Thompson, used to own. In the summer of 1971, Bob bought a new Chevy Camaro. His older brother, Ron, bought a Pontiac Firebird the year before and both of the brothers really like the copper color that had debuted in 1970. Bob loved that Camaro and later that summer, I was invited to join their family on their annual vacation to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan – on the north shore of Lake Michigan. We were near the towns of Naubinway and Engadine – real North Woods territory.

Back in those days, we were in our late teens and the Thompson family rented a cabin each year for several weeks of fishing and swimming. Bob and I would go out each evening and drive the back highways – looking for deer and visiting the nightspots. We wouldn’t get in till late and then Mrs. Thompson let us sleep in during the mornings. Bob had driven his new car up there and I had driven the regular family car with Bob’s mother and two younger sisters. We rode in tandem the entire way.

Well, about a week into the trip, Bob had this crazy idea to see how fast his new car would go. The moon was bright, it was late in the evening – in fact, early morning as I recall, and the two of us decided that we would take a ride and see what happened. Bob knew a straight stretch of road that was several miles long, so we buckled up and Bob started to accelerate on the tree-lined, two lane road. You know the kind of highway – somewhat narrow, with tall trees on each side. But it was dark and we could see if there were headlights coming in the distance – plenty of time to slow down if we got going very fast.

Anyway, as we approached 90 or so, it became a game to see if we could break 100 mph. We did. Then it was faster and faster – the engine straining somewhere around 118 or so. Bob pressed the pedal to the floor and the speed inched up – the engine straining for all it was worth. We were both really quiet – I mean REALLY quiet. In fact, as I recall the evening, it was scary. But just like two dumb teenagers, we had this sense of false bravado and Bob kept the pedal to the metal. We inched above 120 mph, the upper limit of the car’s supposed top end. But Bob didn’t let up. Each additional mile per hour seemed like it took an eternity to get there. Finally, the speedometer touched 125 mph and Bob hit the brakes – bringing the car back to 60 or so – less than half the speed we had been travelling.

Only then, when it was all over, did I realize that at any moment a deer could have bolted out from the woods – right into our path. But it didn’t happen. When I realized the danger, from either a tire blow-out or hitting a deer, it didn’t take long for us to realize that we could easily have been killed. And that’s no joke. How stupid!!!

By God’s grace, we survived. To this day, even on the autobahn in Germany, I have never come close to the speed that I travelled that night. And I’m pleased to say that I have no real desire to go that fast again – well, at least unless I was on a racetrack in a reliable car ūüėČ

It seems to me that tonight’s verse should speak to God’s protection. One of my favorite verses on this subject is in the Psalms. In Psalm 91, we are told that God will have His angels protect us. This particular psalm is considered an acknowledgment of God’s provision for weary travelers. In Ps. 91:9-12, we are told, “If you make the Most High your dwelling –¬†even the LORD, who is my refuge‚ÄĒ¬†then no harm will befall you,¬†no disaster will come near your tent.¬†For he will command his angels concerning you¬†to guard you in all your ways;¬†they will lift you up in their hands,¬†so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.” Pretty neat, huh? God will send His angels to protect us – sometimes from ourselves.

My encouragement this evening is to let you know that angels are working overtime to make sure that they do God’s will as it concerns your life. My prayer is that you won’t test God – after all, it’s one thing to have divine protection and quite another to do stupid stuff. Now, I know better, but I’m glad that God’s angels were on the job that night so many long years ago. It could have been a very bad situation otherwise. Have a great day in the Lord, grace and peace…

 
 
 
 

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