“Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” (Hebrews 11:1, NIV).
It was early October of 2001. I had just stepped out of the shower and was towel drying my hair when I decided to do something wild. (Don’t worry, I wasn’t thinking about going anywhere in my birthday suit!) When I say wild, I mean I decided I was going to pray specifically for something. You see, I was about to go on a business trip the next day and it would be my first trip anywhere alone. Not only that, I would be taking an evening flight and landing in a foreign land (yes, Arizona is a very different place from California, haha) and then need to take a taxi to my hotel. My imagination was already working overtime with what could go wrong with a woman traveling by herself at night. The events of 9/11 were also fresh in my mind and added to my worries. But this was one trip I could not miss, so I did the only thing I could do – I prayed.
I told God how worried I was to be flying, how I just wanted to get to Arizona in one piece and also make it to my hotel without any problems. I asked God for a safe flight. And while I was at it, I asked God to bring me a female taxi driver.
A female taxi driver? Did they even exist? I didn’t know, but I guess I would soon find out.
Now, just to preface, I’ve been a Christian for most of my life. I’ve even gone to seminary and taken theology classes (not willingly of course, it was required for my degree). And I believe God hears our prayers and answers them. But I still have a hard time understanding how it all works. Perhaps that is why I struggle at times to talk to God and tell him what I need (or to be more precise, what I want). I would rather work things out on my own than wait for him to help. But in this case, there was little I could do to calm my fears about traveling. That is why I decided to pray.
The next day, I did make it to Arizona safely. Upon arriving at the airport, I found the area for the taxi pick-ups and proceeded to wait in line. I hoped as I waited, I waited as I hoped. My eyes scanned the taxis as they pulled up one by one for the passengers before me. I saw they were all driven by male drivers. Disappointment rose in me, but I continued to hope. Finally, when I got to the front of the line, my taxi arrived. I looked up and there in the driver’s seat was a middle aged woman with shoulder length blond hair.
“A female taxi driver?” he exclaimed. “I’ve never seen one before.” (This is coming from someone who takes business trips often.)
Yup, by God’s grace, I met the only female taxi driver in the world. Okay, maybe not the world, just in the U.S. 🙂
I learned a little more that day about faith. Faith that female taxi drivers do exist. Faith that prayer really does work. And most of all, faith that there is a big and loving God who cares about little ‘ole me.
Here’s one of my old favorite songs, “Faith Like a Child” by Jars of Clay.