Great Reasons to Be Thankful

IMG_0959I type this post today (September 7, 2008) and I still cannot believe what had happened to me last night as I was on my way home from preaching in the mountains.  I type this post slowly because I still could feel the pain in my left arm and the pain in my left leg.

However, those pains in my extremities are nothing compared to the pain that I had felt in my heart– the pain of fear. Because for one more time in my life—last night— I had felt so afraid. I thought it would be my last day in the land of the living.

Last night, on the highway going home, I fell from my motorcycle. Flat on the pavement.

The road was wet and slippery and that portion on the entry point at Nasipit going to Talamban was flooding, which was probably one reason the vehicles on this stretch of the road did not seem to be moving, and I too was wet because I had been traveling three hours under the rain. It had been raining hard the whole morning yesterday.

I fell from my motorcycle not because of my carelessness, for I have always been careful.

I fell because an AUV, colored white, whose driver was in a hurry to go home–like me who was also in a hurry to go home, like every driver of every one of those vehicles on that stretch of the highway who was in a hurry to go home– forgot good manners and road courtesy, and bumped me on my right side, and I fell.

I fell flat on the hard concrete—and imagined death under those rushing wheels.

Yes, I still had my helmet on for my protection, but nothing, practically nothing, could protect me if that white AUV ran over me. My defensive driving techniques are no defense at all.

I think my adrenalins had been pushing my body that very moment in response to emergencies. I did not mind the pains in my extremities. No one helped me, but I managed to pick up self, and rise from where I had fallen. And so I pulled up my motorcycle and pulled it over to the side. I looked around and could no longer find the white AUV that had bumped me. It had escaped.

So for one more time in my life I told myself I wasn’t ready to die yet. I remembered Dioly my wife who is always waiting for me come to home whole–body, spirit, soul. I remembered my grandson Charles Jacob who would always cry whenever I talked about death and dying. I remembered the church in the mountains. Reuben my partner at PIBS could always find someone to take my place as teacher in his school; but someone to replace me in the work in the mountains they could not find. That made me afraid. So very afraid.

I have much fear of situations like last night’s, because I have no control over abusive drivers. But, come to think about it, in situations dangerous and fearsome and beyond my control, I am much thankful because He again has saved me from harm. Last night is one great reason for thankfulness. Brethren’s expectation of me to be always there, safe and sound, and doing the work of the Lord in the mountains, is and has always been another reason. The fellowship with brothers who trust me and look forward to my assistance in the work that we as a family are doing for the Great Father in heaven is also one reason.

The church prayed for me this morning, as they have always done, and again I am so thankful.

I just cannot leave sooner, even if I consider myself dispensable. It depends on Him who holds all lives in His hands. It is He who adds days and hours and minutes to our days and hours and minutes.

Except for a few bruises on my left knee, and pains in the extremities, nothing is amiss. But the plastic panel on the left side of my motorcycle, including the left hand signal light, had been broken. I don’t know how much it would cost me if I will have them replaced. And I did not have time to write down the plate number of the white AUV that bumped me; if I did, I sure would make him pay.

And so I would be out again to the mountains. The business of preaching must go on. I have great trust on Him who will always see us through the storms and dangers, with His mercy and protection ever abiding.

I still tremble as I write these lines. This one extraordinary fear is something I have never felt before.

Let Him do what He will. When He says it’s time to go, we can just put our backpacks aside and leave.

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