Preventive Maintenance

Preventive Maintenance

By Fatima Porras

We all go through situations that leave deep imprints on our spirits. I had one such experience a couple of years ago.

While I was praying, Jesus told me, “Your faith will soon be tested, but don’t be afraid. This will be a time of readjustment.”

God is able to bring some good out of every situation, and this accident was no exception

Ten days later, while on a humanitarian aid mission to a remote area of Burkina Faso, West Africa, I found myself upside down in a Land Rover that had run off the road and rolled into a ditch.

The next few days were a blur of hospitals, phone calls, recounting the accident, and thanking God for His protection. Five of us had been involved in what could have been a fatal accident, and the worst injury that any of us sustained was a broken collarbone.

God is able to bring some good out of every situation, and this accident was no exception. We experienced the hospitality and empathy that are common among African people; everyone from taxi drivers to doctors to ambassadors expressed sincere concern for our well-being. I also gained an even greater appreciation of my coworkers, who didn’t let their bumps, bruises, or broken collarbone stop them from delivering aid to orphanages and remote villages.

What left the deepest impression on me, however, was something God taught me about my spiritual life. Like the wheel alignment on the Land Rover, which had been faulty and caused our accident, my spirit also needs maintenance. If I don’t regularly check my spirit, it can get knocked out of whack by rocks and potholes in the road of life— problems, disappointment, loss, and so on. And if that spiritual misalignment is not corrected, when I hit another particularly rough spot I could lose control, veer off the road, and wind up upside down in a ditch.

Maintaining our spiritual lives through prayer, quality spiritual input, and godly living is as important to our happiness and well-being as servicing our vehicles is to safety on the road. When we work at keeping our spirits in good shape and are mindful of our strengths and limitations, we can respond better to whatever situation we find ourselves in. Our faith in God’s love and care, like shock absorbers, will lessen the bumps in the road; proper alignment will keep us on the straight and narrow; and our lives will take us where God wants us to go.

Have a safe trip!

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