God’s Grace during Breakdown

The day was hot as a steaming cup of Folgers coffee. The Kansas winds were drifting over the plains with a brilliant sun glistening down on the road ahead.

Going home seemed like such a peculiarly since I had been gone so long.

Yesterday, when we started off, we had a truly epic beginning to our road trip back to P.A. Packed to the brim with, in retrospect, too many of the boxes filled with books and bagpipes.

Breaking down at a Casey’s in Chillicothe, MO, just one State over from where we started.

By God’s grace we had the assistance of many passer-by’s to diagnose and get are car to the Walmart across the way.

But just only there as my fiancé had to keep his foot on the accelerator all the way. If the accelerator wasn’t on the car would stop—dead in its tracks. And the car started going hay-wire right around the curb going into the auto part of the Walmart.

But, by the grace of God, the mechanics helped us find the right part and stayed after hours to fix our car. Oh my goodness friends we were feeling so blessed!!

So, down the road we went new battery in tow and an improved air conditioner humming away.

Luckily, we arrived in one piece. Only to find that the garage had already closed and the mechanics were locking up the place for the night.

The mechanic told us where to find the part and said he’d leave the tools out for us. Low and behold though he stated and put our battery back to humming. Thankfully though not literally humming. That was done by the huge canvas bag strapped to the top of the car that made this raspy humming sound all the trip. 😂

The fact that that mechanic stayed overtime to help us was truly Gods hand in our trip.

Wow, folks God is so good!

So, with intact battery, we began again with ,“Snowball” the car, rolling our way across the prairie. With the cold A/C purring away and our favorite broadcast, Dan Bongino playing.

Pushing through MO at a good pace we began to notice the A/C not working as well as it had been.

Then the clock started blinking.

Then, the seatbelt deactivation sign came in as well as the check engine sign.

Gulp.

Thankfully, we were on a highway with a good wide shoulder and we’re able to safely pull off.

So stuck again.

God’s grace helped us then again with the blessing of my fiancé having AAA. With roadside assistance, thank the good Lord.

This is the real crazy part so far. As Kyril was talking in the phone with AAA a car pulled up behind us. I was thinking wow, AAA is fast!

It was a good Christian person stopping in the road to see if we needed help. Folks, this was truly a beautiful time when a stranger and I bent our heads on the side of the highway and prayed for the road ahead and safety on our trip.

As, he’s leaving, a cop pulls up to see what’s wrong. He asks us if we need help too. Then the county sheriff pulls up behind, apparently the first police officer who’d pulled off to help was out of his county. And they both wanted to stay and help. So we had an incredible and funny conversation with the local police sharing a few jokes and chatting it up about sports, recent happenings and life.

It was truly a surreal experience to have so many people come to our aid.

Then the tow truck pulled up and the police officers stayed until the truck was driving away. I have just been so blown away by the generosity we’ve experienced throughout this town.

The tow truck driver took us to the local hotel where we slept very well after a truly exhausting day.

The tow truck driver was so kind he even came into the hotel to make sure we had a room offering in advance that he’d drive us the 20 min down to the other hotel if this one was full. Wow, what charity!

The local repair shop had their hands full this morning but generously took a diagnostic on our car when we showed up. The alternator was shot. So, after a long day hiking up and down the town even crossing a highway to get to where we needed. We found a Casey’s to get some lunch at.

As we were sitting outside enjoying “lunch” and discussing our situation a woman walked up to us to help. She asked us if we needed anything and gave us directions to the nearest food/rest places. Then she went back to her car and we began heading over to where she’d advised us to go. She then jumped out of her car and came up to us handing my fiancé money saying “This will buy you lunch”. This was just such a true act of Christian charity.

We feel so blessed!

Travel #1: New- Orleans-travels

I gingerly sip the rest of my latte and peer out the window at the rolling hills flush with green. What a beautiful creation this world is, honestly who could think twice about not embracing such a beautiful planet and world. The world now is so confused and utterly turned on it’s head, right now, it seems.

Aside from that little bout of thought on today’s world life goes on. Some music to brighten your morning :).

Though truly if someone were to ask me every day is a miracle and quite an extra-ordinary experience. Each day presents a new way to give to others and to impact others in loving ways. Sometimes by just a simple gesture. That is what brings me joy.

I am reflecting this morning on the splendors and beauty I experienced recently on my fiance and I’s roadtrip to New Orleans. What an adventure!! And I got to meet my future in-laws and more of his family too. The second night we were there we went to a Jazz Bar to The Spotted Cat. The first I had ever been to. So Loud! So much Fun!!

White Pumpkins and Sipping Gunpowder Tea

I sit drinking a steaming cup of Gunpowder green tea, reflecting on life’s stupendous way of confusing and closing relationships. Reflecting on my childhood and the way it’s shaped my life. The way I’ve grown up and developed as a Child of God. How I am so close to something great yet so far away? In the state of status viatoris. The inherent “not yet.”

My relationships with others are changing as I grow older. People drift in and out of our lives like clouds. But some people are like the sun or moon, always returning. That’s what we’re all looking for in this world somebody to be our sun or moon.

So, my current relationship status is committed and true. My sun and my moon, forever. I don’t have to worry about him leaving me or not forgiving me in my deepest sin. I read his love story and learn from his Book. He has uncovered new worlds for me and opened my eyes to wonderful things. He is my beginning and my ending.

I’ve been reading a book by Rick Warren called The Purpose Driven Life. He relates our life here in this world similar to having a green card. Our life on this Earth is like having a green card. Such a succinct and powerful comparison really makes you think about how you spend your time. The gravity of how everything affects your salvation. It’s really incredible and eye-opening to think about.

I was watching, In Plain Sight, last night and a comment that Raphael said to Mary, that really stuck out to me.

He says:

“Life isn’t short. It’s long and honestly, I don’t know if you love me enough to make this work.”

I think human relationships are like that. Love is soooo powerful and loving someone for life is a challenge in many ways than one. And is it not coincidental that his names Raphael like the Angel. My favorite Guardian Angel, in fact.

In the book, Faith Hope Love, by Josef Pieper, I’m reading, it reflects on love. He reflects that the common element of all the forms of love: approval.

Thomas Aquinas says,

We cannot help desiring felicity.

Another line from Josef Pieper’s book,

Perfection always means transformation as well. Fire as the symbol of love.

So patience, always, is required to love.

The clouds are moving fast today the weather’s changing.

Adieu, for now, my friends!

Pursue what is good and love always.

Magnificient27

Josef Pieper and Coffee

The fog spread over the red brick streets like butter. There is an aura of mystery and profound silence greeting the morning. A swallow chimes its song. A small omen to the days beginning.

The air is crisp. The pages ruddy against my hands shifted as I pressed open the pages of my book.The coffee I’m sipping is steaming hot and the warmth against my hands is comforting.
Steaming Hot Guatemalan Coffee

The book that changed my life. The book that redeemed the way I thought about my conscious and saved my wayward thinking about Christianity.

Faith, Hope, Love by Josef Pieper is a riveting theological book that sparks all kinds of curiosity in the Christian mind. We, as Christians are all striving for the ultimate perfection of Heaven. We’re visitors to this life living as we have been called to live out our vocations, our callings. Being a visitor, viatoris, means “to be on the way”. The status viatoris is, then, the condition or state of being on the way.

To be a viator, therefore, is the state of making progress toward eternal happiness. This strikes a profound knock-on what seems the directionless doors of our society. We all strive for direction but it’s just as easy to get lost in the shuffle buried in passion, work, relationships, education, etc.

The way of man leads to death. The antonym of status viatoris is status comprenensoris which describes one that has comprehended, encompassed, arrived, is no longer a viator but a comprehensor. This word was borrowed from St. Paul’s epistles: “Brethren, I do not consider that I have laid hold of [the goal] already” (Phil 3:13)

The state of being on the way is not to be understood in a primary and literal sense as a designation of place. It refers rather to the innermost structure of created nature. It is the inherent “not yet” of the finite being.

So, therefore, the innermost structure would be how we think and what we do. At least that’s how I interpret it. Not a physical state of being but a look at the insides of who we are and where we’re going. It’s quite intense to think about, emphatically perplexing and overwhelming.

Now that the dust has settled from my life. I am able to look around and reflect on where I am and where I want to go. How I can strive for the perfection of heaven in my everyday. How I can help others on their status viatoris.

Where am I on my status viatoris? What am I called to do on my pilgrimage?

We, as Christians are all on a faithful pilgrimage trying to avoid sin and reach Heaven.