Roadside Assistance

When your car breaks down in the middle of the highway on a Friday night, it’s no joke. A lurch, a grinding noise and the smell of burning oil shake you out of your road trance real quick. That's what happened to my husband and I on the way to visit our son two states away.

With the sun going down, we pulled onto the narrow shoulder, giving us very little cushion from the semi trucks hurtling by. We called AAA and yelled at the recorded message until we got through to a live person and ordered a tow truck. Knowing it was going to take about an hour to arrive did nothing to soothe my anxiety.

After about 10 minutes, a Good Samaritan named Al stopped his car. My husband got out to talk with him. He was willing to help change a tire, but a failed transmission wasn't something he could help us with. He took the opportunity to keep us company, and tell us how Jesus had changed his life, and about his daughter, Emily Grace. The tow truck arrived and the driver set about the business of hooking up the car. At this point I had to get out of the car, so I shook Al's hand and overcame my jitters long enough to take some photos of this beautiful Indiana sunset. Several hours and another tow truck later, we arrived back home. The next morning, we rebooted our trip and reached our destination without incident.

I do not relish the memory of that evening, but the souvenir photo is one of my favorite images. It reminds me that even when things don't go as planned, God is still good. It reminds me to be calm in the face of uncertainty. I am braver than I think, and strangers can be a blessing. It reminds me that even in the midst of a bad day, you can still find something beautiful.

This print will be for sale at Gallery Cafe Chicago until mid-May. Stop by and check it out along with the work of many other local artists.

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