God is not a silent Father existing millions of light years away out in a dark, vast universe somewhere. On the contrary, He is as close as your next breath. I believe that God communicates with us on a regular basis. Unfortunately, in the hustle and bustle of today’s hectic lifestyle, our spirits are seldom quiet enough to hear His whisper. One busy weekday morning, I heard such a whisper. I was driving on the dark, tree-lined interstate gazing at the big, orange sunrise coming up over the highway and praying, asking God to calm my many worries. As a mother of three children, there is never a dull moment, or lack of some situation on which to pray fervently! As I cried out to God, an eighteen-wheeler caught my eye as it roared past me on my left. On its worn, burgundy painted panel was plastered the word, “Crowley” in large, white letters. I felt as though something, perhaps the Holy Spirit, was drawing my attention to this company name. I made a mental note of it, and then my thoughts gave way to the routine and rhythm of the day.
Over the course of the following months, I saw several “Crowley” trucks. A smile would creep across my face each time, as I felt it to be a sign that God was present with me on the road.
In the wake of Hurricane Katrina, my husband lost his job in Slidell, because his non-profit organization took over eight feet of water. There was absolutely nothing that could be saved, because when the water receded, it left behind a thick layer of mud, and mold. For six months, we survived on my catholic school teacher’s salary. But for the grace of God, we may have lost our home to foreclosure. The funds in our checkbook would often become dangerously low. Somehow, God would rescue us just in the nick of time – everytime!
During this very trying and stressful time, the name “Crowley” began coming up in unusual places. I had never been aware of the surname in my life, as it is not a very common name here in the United States. I knew that the Lord was using this to tell me something, but that message was truly a mystery to me.
While under the dark cloud of unemployment, everything that could go wrong did. Our air conditioner, dish washer, microwave oven, and vacuum cleaner broke. If that were not a big enough test of faith, my husband broke a tooth while eating dinner one evening. This stressed him more than being without a job. He had several bad experiences with dentists as a child, and he was petrified at the thought of having to go get his jagged tooth rebuilt.
I called this wonderful country dentist I used. His office is almost forty minutes away by rural roads, but the trip is worth it! He is gentle, kind, and up to date on all of the latest techniques. He is pain-free to the mouth and easy on the checkbook.
I drove my nervous husband to the office, and the dentist did awesome work! He quickly put my husband at ease, and repaired the broken tooth. During the course of the visit, my husband and the doctor talked about Eric’s unemployment. Dr. Plenda kindly inquired about Eric’s work history and credentials. My husband told about his degree and his fifteen years of experience in the mental health field. Ironically, the doctor said that his daughter had just started a business to provide services to the mentally ill and support to their families. As we left, he told us to call his secretary in the morning – that she would give us the daughter’s contact information. He then wished Eric well in his search!
The next morning, I called Dr. Plenda’s office and spoke to his secretary. I explained why I was calling, and recanted the conversation the doctor and my husband had the day before. She asked me to hold for a moment while she collected the information. When she returned to the phone, she asked if I had a pen to take down the information. I said, “I’m ready.” She began to speak, “Michayla Crowley…555…” I nearly dropped the phone. I hung up with a “Wow,” in my heart. I couldn’t believe it. I was sure that Michayla was going to give my husband a job, because I had received “The Sign – Crowley.”
Eric sent his resume to Mrs. Crowley, but our great hopes were dashed. Eric did not receive an interview or even a phone call from her. Why would God lead us on like that?
(story to be continued tomorrow)
*names have been changed to protect people’s anonymity