The Sea Bright United Methodist Church has a fairly unique service where Parishioners are invited to express their need for a prayer of need, gratitude etc. on the behalf of themselves, or for others.
A common prayer is for Travel Mercies.
Over the past 2 weeks, I was the direct beneficiary of Travel Mercies from God. I'm presently working on an Information Technology Procurement project for a company in Montvale, NJ. Every day, I have to travel 70 miles each way, with a commute about 75-90 minutes in the early morning, and up to 2 hours in the evening.
Flying to Michigan Nov 17.
I'd mentioned to Frieda that I'd be traveling, and she cheerfully and unequivocally stated in very definite terms that George would pray for Travel Mercies on my behalf during Tuesday Bible Study. That really comforted me tremendously.
I was booked on a flight leaving out of Newark, and I just pulled into long-term parking and turned the car off. I checked my iPhone, and found an email from US Airways informing me that the flight was cancelled. The travel agency said there were no flights available that day. But I had to be in Farmington Hills, a suburb of Detroit, for meetings on Tuesday & Wednesday.
I was able to get a flight leaving out of Philadelphia 3 hours later, and I drove from Newark to Phillie in torrential rain for an hour and a half, with flashers on for half the way. I made it safely, caught my flight and was able to attend the meetings. Of course, that was the time when the snow storm hit, crippling Buffalo. There were at least 4 other situations during that trip where I know God intervened on my behalf, acting through friends and well-wishers!
Thanksgiving Eve, 2014
I had to be in Montvale for a meeting at 9:30 on Wednesday Nov 26. I'd originally planned to work from home, given the pre-holiday rush, and the impending storm. On Tuesday, my boss, who was on vacation, said he wanted to meet with me on Wednesday at 9:30am.
So I left Sea Bright at 5:15am instead of my usual 6am, and drove into what was a rainstorm by the time I reached Montvale in my very trusty 1999 rear-wheel drive station wagon with 246,000 wonderful miles (Thank you, Good Lord, for all the times she took care of me, protected me during accidents whilst damaging herself, and brought me safely home!)
at 9:30, I was looking out the conference room windows and watching the snowstorm. My boss was on the phone, unable to leave his town because of piled snow. He apologized for my having to drive 70 miles into a snow storm, and his case of not showing up 🙂
At 10:45, we finished the call, and I started to head back with thick, wet flurries. The car already had about an inch of wet, slurry snow and ice. I distinctly recall praying for Travel Mercies. I was honestly not even sure if my car nor I would even survive the trip back! But as I prayed, a sense of warm comfort and the sense that I was in God's Hands, at His Mercy, emboldened me.
I don't recall exactly how long the trip from Exit 172 on the GSP, back to Exit 117, took. I recall driving with light traffic that made the lanes passable. The snow was very consistent until I reached the Driscoll bridge, where it was slick, and then the snow turned into rain, as the Linda Hopkins' song goes.
God and my car brought me home without any incident.
Wishing/Praying for Travel Mercies
After I returned to 'Safe' territory (which amazingly happens once you get off Exit 117!), I stopped by FoodTown in Atlantic Highlands for some wonderful chicken soup. I said Happy Thanksgiving and Travel Mercies to the lady at checkout. By the surprised look in her eyes, I knew that she knew what I meant.
It's almost like a secret handshake, or a code word.