One of the blessings of being a pastor’s wife is listening to people’s stories. Often when we are visiting our members, my husband will ask them if they’ve ever seen an angel or felt the “hand that intervenes.” We have heard some remarkable stories in our nearly 40 years of ministry.
One Sabbath we had been invited to dinner with several other couples. After a lovely meal, we were gathered in the living room, and my husband asked the group if they had ever seen an angel. Several people had, and they shared their experiences.
After a while, Lorene told her story. It happened when she was just a small girl, but she has never forgotten it.
Lorene and her sister Carol lived with their mother in Wyoming. Her mother had become a Seventh-day Adventist, and her father was so ashamed that he left the family and moved to California. Christmas was coming, and Mother wanted so much to be with her family in Montana. She worked hard to put food on the table. They had no car, so Mother saved every cent she could and bought bus tickets for them to travel to see Grandma and Grandpa in Montana. She mailed a postcard to her family, telling them when they would arrive so that one of her brothers could come and meet them at the bus depot.
The girls packed a suitcase with the few belongings they had. They were excited to travel on the bus to Grandma’s house. The trip was uneventful, and they arrived late at night in the little town about 14 miles from Grandma and Grandpa’s farm. The depot was deserted, and the small town was dark. The bus driver dropped them off and went on his way. No uncle was there to greet them. They felt very alone. Mother and the girls decided to start walking in the direction of the farm. Surely someone would come along to pick them up.
It was cold and dark and the girls were very small. They walked for a while, but soon Carol and Lorene began to cry. They were too cold to go on, and Mother realized that her decision to start walking had been a poor one. No cars had come along. Finally she sat the suitcase down on the ground and gathered her little girls to her. She said, “We need to pray that God will send someone to help us.” There along that highway, in the cold and the dark, they bowed their heads and prayed.
Almost immediately, they saw lights approaching. Expecting a pick-up truck or an old car, they silently watched as the car slowed down and stopped beside them. It was a beautiful, clean car, and the man who stepped out was dressed in clean clothes and was very polite. He asked if he could give them a ride somewhere. He opened the door, and they hurriedly climbed into the warm car. It smelled new and clean, with no hint of tobacco smell, as most cars had in those days.
Mother told him where they were going but said it was too far and that her sister lived closer. She started to explain that it was a little complicated to get to her sister’s house: you had to go through a gate and then through a orchard, but the driver quietly said, “I know where the Brown farm is. I know the way.”
The girls leaned back in the seat and smiled. They weren’t cold anymore, and God had answered their prayers.
Soon they drove into the orchard. Fearing that the dogs would start barking when they saw the strange car and wake the whole family, Mother asked the driver to stop before they reached the house. So he stopped and helped them with their suitcase. They walked the remainder of the way to the house. The family was so surprised to see them and asked how they got there. Mother described the man and the car, but no one knew anyone who fit that description. The next morning they asked around the neighborhood, but no one had seen the driver and his new car.
Lorene, Carol, and Mother are convinced that God sent an angel Chauffeur to answer the prayers of a believing, trusting little family.