I’m often told to watch out or to be careful when I travel outside of the United States. People say “It’s dangerous!” “Don’t drink the water!” “Carry your money in your socks!” (That’s the funny one. I’m a missionary! Look in my socks all you want – there won’t be any money!) Some say “What if the plane crashes?” “What if you are captured by extremists?” “What if you get in a car wreck?”
Well… It’s happened. I had a car wreck, while towing our trailer. But it didn’t happen abroad, it happened not 100 miles from my house. It was my fault. The traffic slowed, I slowed. The traffic slowed suddenly; I braked suddenly. But the weight of the 40ft travel trailer behind our Suburban didn’t want to stop as fast as we did and so we slid for a couple hundred feet and wore flat spots in our Suburban tires. Unfortunately, we also made contact with the right rear bumper and quarter panel of the car in front of us as well as bouncing off the concrete barricades a few times until coming to a stop. Smoke was all around us from the burnt tires. My son, Joshua, later told me he thought it smelled like a NASCAR race.
It could have been so much worse. We could have jackknifed our trailer, flipped over or crashed headlong into the wall or other cars. But we didn’t. I was looking at a direct hit to the back of the little car in front of us. My wife was thinking we were going over the edge of the overpass to the road below. The kids, well, I am not sure what they thought. Regardless, we came away from it with a few dents and dings, and as far as I know, no one in either vehicle was injured (except for my accident-free driving pride). Some would call it luck, I call it God’s grace!
The reality is that we never know what can happen anywhere we go. That fear should not hinder us from taking action and moving about. Should I be careful? Of course I should. I have a family to care for! But will I go where God says to go, even if it involves risk? Always! I have the privilege of bringing the gospel to the lost and hurting of this world! I love my job!