The Miracle of the Oil
At Hanukkah time, we are reminded of some of life’s mysterious miracles. Most of us can add some of our own. While I have had some great miracles in my life, I marvel at many of the small ones. These are the ones that I call the “Miracle of the Oil.” If you are not familiar with the original “Miracle of the Oil”, please check out my hub, “What is Hanukkah?”
“Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies.”~Mother Teresa
Being in the situation of “too much month” at the end of our paycheck way too often, we often pray at our house for just a little more time, a little more food, a little more money, etc., etc. Calling it the miracle of the oil first came into play for me about two years ago. We were struggling a bit and were still a few days shy of payday. Our “pay as you go” electric box said we had enough electricity for only two days. We began to seriously conserve our electricity. By day two, I gathered candles and and flashlights. I checked the meter, it gave us only one more day. By day three, we still had electricity! Day four, payday, I left for work, worryng that the kids would probably be in the dark until I came home with our filled card. Miraculously, we still had electricity when I got home. That was my first Miracle of the Oil! Since then, there have been several more, from medical supplies to baby formula. Fortunately, our financial situation has improved, so I haven’t had to give as much thought to the Miracle of the Oil. Until….a few weeks ago.
Family road trip!
We decided to go on a spontaneous trip to see a little fall foliage. It turned out to be a beautiful day, complete with amazing sights and….a restoration of faith, my reminder of the miracle of the oil and all other little miracles.
After a full day, we began the almost two hour trek down the mountain. We had, altogether, made three stops that day where we fueled our bodies and replenished our souls. Yet, somehow, we forgot to refuel the car. Unfortunately, we didn’t remember until the little red light came on. No worries, we’ll stop at the next gas station. Right? Wrong. Apparantly, there was no exit for at least another 40 miles!
What were we going to do? First came the great debate…did we already pass the closest stop or are we coming to it? A critical question. Unfortunately, we had already passed it. In our blissful ignorance, we hadn’t even noticed it. We began searching on our phones, trying to see when our next stop really was. I sat quietly thinking about our options. They weren’t looking very good.
1) Pull over and hope for help.
2)Phone a friend
3)Have one of us walk for help
4)Keep driving until we finally run out of gas.
The temperature was dropping, it was pitch black outside and with the divided highway, even if we had a friend come to help us, they wouldn’t be in the right direction. We had no choice but to keep driving….and praying.
What a dangerous situation I had gotten us into. I couldn’t help beating myself up as Ben announced that typical Chevy Cavaliers can go 28-30 miles with their reserve of gas. 30 miles!!! The next stop was at least 40 miles away! What would we do with a baby on the side of a lonely highway in the cold and dark? How could any of us safely walk 10 miles for help?
I called upon all my powers of positive thinking. I said to the kids, “Now would be a great time to pray.”
“Doubt is a pain too lonely to know that faith is his twin brother.”~Khalil Gibran
We continued down the mountain, knuckles white on the wheel, barely talking, hardly breathing, afraid to waste any energy, lest it add more weight to the car. About 35 miles nearer, I began to breathe. I knew I could walk for help if I had to. A little further and we saw something even better…..lights! Now even conversation began again. We all knew that the situation was no longer as dire. We should be okay, but….there was still the matter of a couple of miles.
We began, once again, to hold our breath, still no signs telling us how far we had still to go, but the lights were getting brighter, the speed limit was getting slower and our moods were getting lighter.
We made it, finally! We had gone about 42 miles from the time we first noticed the fuel light! That Chevron gas station was our oasis in the desert!
“Faith consists in believing when it is beyond the power of reason to believe.”~Voltaire