12.04.2005

...and Then I Got a Miracle

Wait! Read this one first!

And then read this one!

Oh, but it gets better.

My dad and I went out after school on Friday with the intention of buying a relatively inexpensive used car that I could drive for maybe a year.

My mom told me that my dad was feeling nervous and jumpy, because ... okay, my dad is totally anal. He likes to be in full control at all times, and at this particular time, he felt very rushed and he was uncomfortable about buying a car because he had not had time to do his customary six months of research. No, really.

Keep in mind that I would be unable to pay for ANY car myself, and that I was resigned to owing my dad a huge sum of money, and also he would be garnishing my paycheck for possibly the rest of my life. I might have been a little depressed.

We found a few that looked promising, and then my dad suggested that we go to the dealer from whom he bought his new car in May. We were just going to see if they had any used cars on the lot, or if they were running any specials that we might be able to take advantage of.

My dad really likes his new car, so he was thinking about maybe buying another one like it. The dealer was not running any specials on that particular car, so we looked at the Mazda 3. It was the most standard model, except that it had automatic transmission; it didn't have any other optional features. I test drove it, and by this time I was really, really low, and I was exhausted as well, so I was not feeling it. But my dad was so excited that I was like, "Yeah, I really like it!" (hee, I am a theater teacher, people)

And that is when we found out about leasing. No one in my family has ever leased a car before, mostly because they are all much more financially responsible than I am, so they always have money in the bank to buy stuff outright. Anyway, if I leased this car, I could have it for a low (and totally affordable) down payment, and then I could make the payments for the required number of years.

Awesome translation: I WOULD NOT OWE MY DAD ANY MONEY.

And after that I didn't have to act excited anymore.

Though we didn't sign any paperwork Friday night, we did tell the salesperson we definitely did want to get SOMETHING, and that we would be back Saturday to put some money down. And we went home, me to pray about what car to get and how to work it into my budget, and my dad to pray and cram six months of research into one night. [Note: Several other people were also praying for us at this time, and I thank you all for your prayers. I cannot tell you how much I appreciate them].

So bless my dad's anal retentive heart, he found out that Kia was having a leasing special which required NO money down and a monthly payment of less than $200.
Total non-coincidence: the special was running until Monday (two days away).

The only drawback was that the terms might apply only to the manual transmission models, and we both agreed that I could drive a stick if it meant I could get the price I wanted.

Plus, two years ago when my engine went out, I had to drive with two feet anyway, and I never really gave up the habit because then my transmission went out, so I was halfway there already. As an extra bonus, it would totally come in handy as training for when Jenn and I go on The Amazing Race.

So the next day, we went to the lot and looked at the Kias, but uh oh! They didn't have any manual transmissions. But the sales manager said we could still have the deal with any of the cars they had on the premises, so really, all I had to do was pick a color. I did--a nice gold one--but uh oh! It had cruise control (not standard equipment). And, AGAIN, the sales manager said he would allow the car to qualify for the special.

Let me tell you what is standard on this car:

Power steering
Power windows
Power door locks
Air conditioning
Keyless entry
AM/FM/CD

THESE THINGS ARE NOT USUALLY STANDARD EQUIPMENT.

Furthermore, all of these things are what I was going to look for in my "real" car, the one I was planning to buy when I had saved enough money.

Here is what I was looking for in my "rebound" car: CD player. Seriously.

So I got a BRAND NEW CAR, with twelve (12) miles on it, with nothing down and a low, low monthly payment.

To recap:
A deer ruined my plans.
I needed a car, any car.
I was willing to settle for a crap car until I had saved enough money.
I was resigned to owing a huge amount of money to my dad.
I GOT A BRAND NEW CAR WITH ALL THE FEATURES I WANTED, AND THEN SOME, AND I DON'T OWE MONEY TO ANYONE AND THAT DEER CAN BITE ME.

Um.

On a totally different note, and I am fixing to get spiritual here, there is a Bible verse, Jeremiah 29:11, that says, "'For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.'"

And you know what? I had plans. They were good plans, responsible plans, and they would have worked, probably.

Then, when that deer hit me and I had to change my plans, I had some really low expectations. Like, basement-low. And God had SO MUCH MORE in store for me, but I chose to be mad for a whole day, instead of seeking His will and trying to figure out what He wanted me to do.

And let me tell you, being mad wears me OUT. Not only that, but it totally affects everyone around me; my kids felt my wrath, I know, and I was not the happy-go-lucky sort of person I usually am, so that means I was no fun to be around. I pretty much wasted that day by focusing on everything bad that had happened to me and by refusing to see the bright side of anything.

I HATE PEOPLE LIKE THAT.

So when I thought about how much worse my situation could have been, I began to see that God really had given me a miracle right there. People have DIED because deer ran into their cars, and I just had a dented up car; I walked away without a scratch, even though by rights I should have at LEAST had some black eyes or cuts from the broken glass.

But God didn't stop with the miracles there. And that is really the wonder of it all, because you would think that being alive would be enough of a gift, but then He went even further than that, and He blessed me with a car that I love, and He kept me out of debt, and He showed me that He can make anything possible. How awesome is that?

I cannot express my feelings in words, and at times like these I always fall back on the Doxology, because I think the first words pretty much sum it up:

PRAISE GOD FROM WHOM ALL BLESSINGS FLOW!!


My miracle car

The only thing I will be adding to it are those deer whistle things,
because y'all. Once bitten, twice shy ... or whatever.

2 comments:

Cindy said...

Mei, I'm so happy that everything worked out for you, in a way that only God could've done. By the way, I feel your pain...my husband has totalled two of our cars, once hitting a deer and believe it or not, once hitting a COW.

Mei said...

Actually, I can believe the cow thing. Once, when we were going to the mall, my brother-in-law had to wait for some cows to cross the road.
And if you'd told me five years ago that I would someday be typing that sentence in a totally non-ironic way ...

 

Made by Lena