Many years ago, while writing one of my mini-books entitled, "Your Life, Your Testimony, I remember thinking I don't know what to write in this book. At the time I hadn't realized the importance of keeping track of all the ways the Lord has moved in your life and the power of inspiration a testimony can have on someone. In fact, that book has yet to be released because the Lord instructed me to wait until I've written a number of testimonies that He wants me to add to the book.
Suddenly, the Lord gave me the realization that one of the main reasons He delivers us from one situation to another is so that we can share our testimony with others who may be blessed and encouraged by how the Lord's blessings are apparent everywhere we go if we slow down long enough to recognize them.
This testimony is about a time when both of the cars my wife and I drive broke down with major repairs needed to the point where we just decided to give one of the cars to charity and pray for funds to get the other car a new engine, if needed.
A new engine, in this particular case , was estimated to cost no less than $1300. Until then, my wife and I were forced to either rent cars for work assignments or catch the bus, which is enough to test anyone's religion.
A frustrating cycle began, I would get a job assignment, rent a car to get there, get paid for the job and then watch much of the hard earned money disappear going to the cost of the rental car. How was I going to save $1300 for a new engine or save $1,000 down payment for a new car if all the money available to be saved was constantly being eaten up by the cost of renting cars.
I applied for a car loan online just to see what I could qualify for. My credit rating wasn't the best so the results came back with a qualification that I had been approved but with a whopping 23% interest rate attached. Ouch! So I just sighed and filed the information away.
Finally, after a few more weeks one weekend, I told my wife, "That's it! Were getting out of this rental car situation. I saw several job assignments ahead but I also saw how much of my money was going to be spent on the rental car.
So I went first to a used car lot where I had seen several very nice looking used cars and , in the past, had encountered a very friendly salesman who garanteed me that he could work with me on any kind of credit.
The problem I was facing on this venture was that I had no money to put down on anything that day because of the upcoming rental car bill, but I could get the down payment paid throughout the month.
So on this day, a different and less cordial salesman ran my credit check and came back laughing.
"Ah, have you looked at your credit report lately?" he smirked.
"No, but I'm sure you're about to tell me," I replied.
"There is NO WAY we can put you in a car on this lot for less than $2,000 down today. You're too much of a risk."
"Well, thanks anyway!" I told him, and he walked away.
I knew my credit wasn't the best in the world but the way he laughed at my rating really rubbed me he wrong way. So feeling a little frustrated, I headed back to my rental car.
As I was about to get in the rental car, the Lord told me to turn around, go back and write down all the cars I like on this lot. Learning many years ago what happens when you are not obedient to the Lord's voice, I pulled out a piece of paper and pen, went back onto the carlot and ended up with a nice list of 14 cars that I liked on this lot.
The salesman was looking at me the whole time like I was crazy, probably thinking, "Why is this man writing down what he likes if can't afford to get any car on this lot?"
Now from this point on, everything else about that day seemed surreal to me. It was almost like I just came along for the ride.
I went home and told my wife to get dressed, we're getting a car today. She, of course, looked at me like, "Do you know something I don't know?" Actually, I was acting with a frightening confidence which even I didn't understand at the time.
I went into my file cabinet, pulled out the approved online car loan, jumped in the rental car and off we went on our way to driving down a part of Van Nuys BL that we in the San Fernando Valley call "dealership row."
As we approached, looking only a cheap new car or medium-priced used car, we saw a cute car marked $7999 and stopped as if that was the car to get. I got out of the rental car to examine the used car more closely. All the white collar salesmen gave me this judgmental ''once-over", obviously concluding that I was probably going to waste their time. So, as a result, they sent a young black rookie salesman to come help me.
"Yes, sir!" I greeted,"I need car today.!"
The young rookie salesman was obviously shaken that he didn't need to use his sales pitch greeting. He showed me a 2003 version of the same car that made us stop in the first place. After a short test drive, I said, "We'll take it."
Now the fun begins. I was immediately passed to a more experienced white salesman, who ignored me earlier, whose main job was obviously to close the deal. For the next two hours, he kept coming up with all kinds of down paymemt options. However, no matter how many times I said it, he wasn't hearing my repeated statement that "I don't have anything to give you today."
Finally, with the threat that we were about to leave and come back at another time, the salesman left and came back and said, "I've figured out how to put you in a car today. Give me two checks to ut on hold until you tell us to deposit each one and you've got a car.
"No problem!" I said, "Now that's what I'm talking about! Praise the Lord!"
Over the next hour, all the paperwork was processed and completed and we drove off the lot with a nice 2000 Dodge Neon which was $2000 higher than our original choice. However, the dealership knocked $700 off the price of the car so that it would fit into my loan application requirements. Praise God again for favor.
God truly showed up in the dealership that day. Coming into the dealership, the only thing I knew for sure that day was the fact that I had no money to put down that day but I had faith that somebody was going to sell us a car, at some dealership that day.
The salesman's original attitude was telling me there was NO WAY I could drive off the lot with a car with no down payment that day. I guess he thought I was joking when I said, "I HAVE NO MONEY TO GIVE YOU TODAY!" But when I said, "Then we'll just have to come back at another time", all of a sudden, the saleman made everything work.
Now, in reality, you and I know that it was the Lord making everything work, praise God! When salesmen want a sale they usually work with you to a point, as long as they have something to gain. But normally, once the advantage is not theirs, they don't want to deal with you.
In reflecting on the blessings of that day, I realized that from the time the Lord told me to write down a list of cars I liked on the other lot, to when we drove off the second car lot, the Lord was in total control. Never once did I listen to the salesman tell me what I couldn't do. Never once did I doubt and ask the Lord what He was doing. I felt an incredible peace the entire time. I just confessed my desire, believed I'd have a car by the end of the day and watched the Lord do His thing, "making the impossible a possibility."
Then I thought, why can't I apply this to everything in life, put it all in God's hands. So many times, I've confessed something and then doubted I could really get it. Once you doubt, you've recalled your request to God because your doubt is really doubting God can bring it to pass.
I share all my testimonies with you in the hopes that they can inspire you with the comfort of knowing God is with us everywhere we go and ready to help us any time. However, if we don't ask Him for help or don't put it all in His hands, then we are standing in our own way and blocking the very blessings God is trying to get to us.
May we all strive forever to be obedient to God's voice.