Thursday, November 8, 2012

From Zero to Sixty, Drama-Style

I’m going to tell you a story that has nothing to do with the recent elections. Is that okay? 

The time change really screwed me up this weekend. I went to bed worried on Saturday night, anxious that I’d miss my 4:00 a.m. holy hour, and tossed & turned for several hours. When I woke up and saw that it was 1:52, I thought I’d might as well just get up.

So I went downstairs and started my coffee...

Then realized that it hadn’t been 1:52 at all. It was 11:52 when I got up, which meant little sleep before my holy hour but lots of sleep throughout it.

I’m sorry, dear Lord.

I was just…so tired.

Feeling both sleepy and hungry on my way home, I decided to swing by a 24-hour McDonald’s down the road from our church. I’m just a bit addicted to their breakfast sandwiches, if you must know, especially their sausage biscuits.

Was it God’s will for me to go to McDonald’s at that hour? Because just before I turned into the parking lot, I saw a man lying face down in the street. He was crumpled into a heap at the side of a car—prostrate, unmoving—and I was so afraid that he was dead.

I’ll admit, I was just as afraid to approach him.

Yet, I didn’t have my cell phone with me, having left it at the Cathedral the previous week. What could I do? How could I get help? I could tell the manager at McDonald’s, I guess, but then I saw another woman. She was sitting in her car, reading the paper and sipping a coffee. At 5:00 in the morning! What are the odds? I flew over.

Yes, she had a cell phone & yes, she would call 911. Together, then, we went to stand by the man, and fearfully I told her, “He’s not breathing.”

Except at that point he did breath. He gave a loud snore.

And I thought,  “What a cold, uncomfortable place to pass out.”

It all worked out in the end, I think. The woman told me that I could go and she would wait for the police to arrive, which they did. (I saw the flashing lights as I pulled away from the drive-through, sausage biscuit in hand & leftover angst in heart.) I drove home praying for that poor man; I drove home thanking God for His providence.

See? I told you my story had nothing to do with the elections.

Or does it?

I think—no, I trust—that it will be okay. We may see things that shock and sadden us, but God is ever at our side. He’s in control. We must cling to Him.

And I’ll praise You in this storm
And I will lift my hands
For You are who You are
No matter where I am.

And every tear I've cried.
You hold in Your hand.
You never left my side,
And though my heart is torn
I will praise You in this storm

                        -- Casting Crowns


  1. Good for you for stopping.

    Once when I was in Dayton, Ohio, I called 911 because I saw a man passed out in a parking lot in the rain.

    The dispatcher said (and I kid you not): "Is he just drunk? Cause we don't send people to get people who are just drunk."

    I had to pretend I thought he might be injured in order to get her to send an ambulance. Can you imagine?

    1. Anonymous8:39 AM

      This is going to sound cold. Yes, I can imagine the dispatcher asking if he was simply drunk and stating that they don't dispatch ambulances to collect drunks. I realize it sounds harsh. Having worked in public hospitals in large cities. I can say with a great deal of confidence, such calls redirect valuable resources from where they are desperately needed. Emergency responders aren't any happier about leaving a drunk in the rain then you are, but they realize they have a limited number of resources and have to use them in a prudent manner and sometimes that means saying no. The fellow with the heart attack whose wife is frantically watching for the flashing red and blue lights that will bring help- Who will later tell her friends and family the outrageous amount of time it took for help to arrive. The time she waits will be extended for every drunk that receives the cities resources. There really are very good reasons that rules such as - We don't send people to get people who are just drunk exist.

  2. Clinging.

    Thanks for your story.

  3. I sure hope that man got the help he needed. I have some mcdonalds vices myself.

  4. I had a McDonalds biscuit for breakfast this a.m. Gee, I hope you get more sleep, but wasn't it wonderful that you got to help that poor man! God is good.

  5. well, we will never know why that man was there or his situation....maybe he prayed for guardian angel and God sent you eh ;-)

  6. I worry about you being out on the roads at that hour of the morning when You should be safely tucked up in bed. Please stay safe and God protect you.

  7. I'm so glad you went there. What if that woman sipping her coffee never saw him? God Bless you...and now I have to try those sausage biscuits.

  8. Margaret, my life is so dull compared to yours! I love reading your stories. BTW: I'm OK with dull ;) I'll live vicariously through you.

  9. Anonymous8:29 AM

    Actually.... I think your story has everything to do with the election. Stay with me here...I have a point. In my mind at least... the election was about how we as a nation care for the most vulnerable among us. It is both convenient and effective to paint conservatives as unfeeling souls. Individuals who care about money above all else. Who wave their pro-life banners and yet disregard "women's health". If you are have to be pro-all life. That includes the drunk who might have passed out at the side of the road...the unborn child...and the child's mother. Your actions taken without regard to your own safety are the actions of a soul that is truly and your family have reason to be proud of the woman you are. I know...I feel blessed to know your out there, caring for a portion of our nations future. You know that phrase..."God Bless You and Your Family"? I mean it!


Quite frankly, I would LOVE it if you left a comment. Sending me coffee & chocolate works too.


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