God Took the Wheels
By Carlton Foster – November 14, 2020
I can still remember that day when God saved my children and me while driving home from preaching at a church in Belle Glade, Florida, USA. Our church was assisting a small struggling church in Belle Glade, and so we put the six elders on a schedule to drive 1-hour, 30-minutes – some eighty-odd miles on the highway each Sabbath to this church in Belle Glade, Florida.
That Sabbath was my turn to go to Belle Glade; my wife was not able to go with us, so my son Andre who was 13-years old, my daughter Veronica-10 years old, and my other son DeVaughn-9 years old, we all packed into my car and headed to Belle Glade. The journey from Miami to Belle Glade is very lonely because most of the trip has sugar-cane fields on both sides. It also has a two-car lane on one side and the same layout on the opposite side, with only 15 feet of land separating both sides. Cargo trucks and farming vehicles used the road heavily, but this Sabbath, it was lonely.
My Sabbath task was to reach the church at 9:15 a.m. for the opening, so we left home at 7:00 a.m. We sang hymns as we drove to Belle Glade. My other responsibilities were teaching the Sabbath School lesson at 10:00 a.m. and preaching the divine sermon at noon. After that, we would stay for lunch, which usually finishes at around 3:00 p.m.
Everything was going well that day: we arrived early, opened the church, and started song service. I taught the Sabbath School lesson and preached a message to the twenty members– half were senior citizens, one or two youths, and the others were young adults. After the church service, some members gathered at Brother Lewis’ home, where we enjoyed a pot-luck lunch prepared by the members. It was around 3:00 p.m. when I decided to leave and head back to Miami.
I said goodbye, and we started on our journey. About 15 minutes into the trip, all the kids began to sleep – we were tired. I was alone, so I started to sing hymns to keep me attentive on that lonely road. The air condition did not help keep me concentrated, so I rolled down my drivers’ window halfway to get the rushing breeze into my face. I tried hard to remain attentive, but I fell asleep while driving. A loud squeaking noise like a car engine raving suddenly awakens me. I looked to see what had happened; it was then that I noticed a trailer truck was beside me, passing us slowly. The noise was not from the passing truck, so I looked to see if it was from my car, which was still moving. It was then that I noticed that the drive-shift was in neutral, and my foot was still pressing the accelerator. The car was not accelerating; it was still going at about 45 mph. How it slipped from drive to neutral, I did not know. How long I was sleeping, I did not know either. I looked at the children, and they were fast asleep.
I was shocked! I put back the drive-shift to drive as the car was still moving and continued on my way to Miami. I was wide awake this time – every feeling of tiredness disappeared from my eyes. I wondered what had happened. How did the car shift from drive to neutral and slow my acceleration? How did the car stay on the road, and where did the trailer truck come from? There were no cars before me or behind me when I entered the highway. I thank God for saving our lives. We could have veered under the trailer truck and gotten run over by the big wheels, or we could have crashed into the barrier or the many light poles. I thank God again and again for taking the wheels and moving the drive-shift to neutral to slow us down and for sending that loud noise that woke me up. This kind of driving could have killed us, but He saved our life.