Last night, Bob and I went out to pick up a few stocking stuffers for the grands and load up on groceries for the week. As we left our rural property heading for the city, we were happy and fairly carefree, talking and laughing about finally getting out on a date, even if it was about picking up groceries. Ten miles from our home, we finally approached the Kilpatrick Turnpike which would take us another five miles to the shopping center. We had decided to take the turnpike instead of the usual back way hoping to avoid traffic congestion at some of the intersections. That decision would change our evening dramatically.
As Bob merged onto the turnpike, I was chattering away about our Christmas plans, who was coming, what the menu was, what presents were already wrapped and waiting under the tree, when we both noticed what looked like a cloud of smoke less than half a mile ahead. We quickly realized that a car had just driven off the frontage road that parallels the turnpike, crashing through the chain link fence and rolling down the twenty foot embankment. We quickly arrived at the scene, joining several other cars that had also pulled over at about the same time.
Pulling over, I noticed three things: the mangled car on it’s side with it’s contents scattered about, a man walking in circles looking dazed and another man laying completely still on the side of the road. Once we were off the road, I jumped from the car and sprinted back to the man on the ground. All I could think about was getting to him and praying.
I knelt down in the grass, laid both my hands on his legs and began to gently stroke him, pleading with God to bring comfort, to show mercy, to do a miracle and heal his broken body. Within seconds, another woman was at his head carefully caressing his face and another man laid his coat over the man and spoke comforting words. I wasn’t really aware of much else for the next five minutes but later Bob would tell me that he saw others standing in the background and he could hear their prayers. Once the fire department, police and ambulance all arrived, they performed their jobs with excellence and had the man ready to transport the few short miles to the hospital.
Here is what I will never forget.
I will never forget that a man named William was surrounded by so many strangers who, at that moment, were united in bringing him comfort.
I will never forget that William was distracted from driving while using his cell phone.
I will never forget that William’s decision to text, talk and drive caused an absolutely horrific and life changing event to happen to him.
I will never forget that I don’t need to talk to anybody so desperately that I cannot wait to pull off the road before dialing or texting.
Please pray for William.