I grab my keys, a cup of coffee, and hustled out the door. It’s 5:00 AM and I got at least an hour drive to a farm up on the other side of the state line in Tennessee. Trying to be there by 6:00 AM to get back to the House of the Harvest by 7:15 or so. I’m low on gas but I like to roll the dice. Besides I can get it along the way somewhere, right?
I am going to pick up a box of squash. Not just any box of squash. This box will come out to over nine hundred pounds. It’s enough for everybody to take a grocery bag full. I have a love/hate relationship with driving. It’s all relative to the traffic. If there is none, I love to drive. Especially when it’s cool outside and I can roll the window down, turn up the radio and enjoy the breeze created by the momentum of the truck. Some of my best times are fall and spring mornings on my way out to MXR. Put me on HWY 72 in Huntsville, middle of rush hour, and I hate driving. It drives me crazy to be behind someone and even more so to be driving through red lights and chaos.
This particular morning...perfect. I rolled the window down, turned the music on, got on that highway that goes to what seems like it’s running away from you Tennessee and just drove. Nobody in my ear, nobody calling my phone, or asking me for something. It was beautiful.
I pull into the farm, drop the tailgate, and she drops that giant box of squash in the back of my truck. I’m there five minutes and back on my way. It’s about fifty minutes to House of the Harvest. I am looking forward to the drive.
I get to the entrance of the farm, the gas light comes on. I’ve got just under fifty miles to go. I’m carrying almost a thousand pounds of squash. And it’s early. I’m thinking I have plenty of time to get to a gas station. No worries. I am not the guy who stops as soon as the gas light comes on. I’m more like the guy who pushes it to the limit. Drives my wife crazy. Today she wasn’t with me and it was a good thing, because I was about to be pushing it to the limit...and then some.
I come to the first gas station. I’ve gone about fifteen miles at this point. It’s around 6:30 AM. I start to pull in with a grateful heart. Closed. I get back on the highway and keep driving. I saw one more gas station on the way to Harvest that morning. It was also closed. I guess they aren’t aware that people are running squash in the early hours of Saturday morning.
By the time I hit the backroads to Harvest, I had gone over forty miles carrying that squash, gas light on the whole time. At this point I had gone from one end of the spectrum to the other. About as anxious as I can get to finally deciding, “God’s not letting me run out of gas this morning.”
I hit Harvest with my mind made up. I passed two open gas stations and cruised into House of the Harvest, dropped the squash, went straight to the MAPCO across the street and filled up...the entire tank. There was less than a gallon left. I had driven almost fifty miles that morning in my Toyota Tundra that gets less than 18 miles to the gallon carrying nothing. And I was carrying almost a thousand pounds of squash.
The conclusion that I reach...God wasn’t letting that truck run out of gas. Not that morning anyway. That squash was getting delivered. Kind of like that jar of oil that never ran dry or those two fish that fed over 20,000.
“For thus says the Lord God of Israel, ‘The bowl of flour shall not be exhausted, nor shall the jar of oil be empty, until the day that the Lord sends rain on the face of the earth.’” 1 Kings 17:14