Grace is not something God gives; grace is who God is. If we are to believe the primary witnesses, an unexplainable goodness is at work in the universe. -Richard Rohr

What has God revealed about himself in the Bible? In the Bible God has revealed to us that he is One God, that he is Spirit, and that he is Life, Light, and Love. -The Evangelical Catechism, Copyright 1957, Eden Publishing

Call me Thomas, as in Doubting. Call me Thomas, in that I had to see to believe. Call me Thomas, in that I have multiple times experienced what I consider the equivalent of putting my fingers in the holes of Christ’s crucified hands. As I write this, I am in my right mind, rational, and convinced of the parallel spiritual universe behind the illusory world in which we live.

This is but one of the recurrent phenomena in my life in which the words of scripture jumped off the page of the book into my life, alive. The photo above is of a chain I wear around my neck every day and the story of a ring that found its way to me inexplicably. It heralded a premonitory message of things to come.

Several years ago, I was on the way to the airport in the wee hours of the morning, headed down a dark desolate road with a driver who had made me feel uneasy even before he picked me up at my home. Because of my life history, my intuition is keener than most, yet because I didn’t want to miss my flight, I ignored my instincts to not get in the car.

On the way, he began driving erratically, pivoting his neck over his shoulder, seeming to assess my threat level. He asked me if I was married. I didn’t answer. Then, when we got to a long, desolate stretch, he slowed down, looking off into the shadows for something. Someone. I removed my phone from my satchel and brought up my emergency button, ready to punch 911.

 Despite being in a 60-mph zone, he slowed the car to 50, 40, 30, 20. I noted every detail and nuance of road, the shoulder indentation, the white mailbox. “Sir! Get back over to the middle of the road! Accelerate this car!” I commanded. He began screaming back at me, and I punched the button. Thank God I had Verizon. T-Mobile would have never picked up on that stretch.

The 911 Operator was on the phone, and I held it right behind the man’s head as she tried to get a bead on the car and find out what the problem was. Because of our location, it took five long miles to locate the vehicle and a good ten before five Sherriff’s vehicles intercepted the little red coupe in which I was captive in the back seat.

Shaking, I exited the car. I was dazed yet simultaneously sharp. After the questioning and back and forth, one deputy drove me the rest of the way to the airport. I boarded my flight. As I sat reviewing my eventful morning, I just thought to myself, “I need to start wearing a wedding ring when I travel”. I figured the man was trying to assess whether or not someone would be looking for me.

In my destination city, I was sitting with a family friend at her home on Wednesday night at dinner. I had been following the news from back home, and earlier that day a female body had been found down the same road where I had my incident. I had told her about what had happened, but not the details of my thoughts.

As we were eating, she remarked, “The funniest thing happened at the grocery store today.” She pivoted her body to the counter behind her and showed me a tiny white box wrapped with a gold elastic ribbon. She explained, “A woman came up to me and tapped me on the shoulder and said Ma’am, God told me to give this to you. It’s a wedding ring.”

My friend replied back, “I can’t take that from you. I don’t know you. That’s too much money.”

The woman insisted, “You have to take it. God says it’s for you.”

He had delivered my ring right into my hands, and it fit perfectly. Immediately I thought, “Your Father in Heaven knows what you need before you ask for it.” (Matthew 6:8) Right off the page and into my life. I didn’t ask. I just thought.

I did not know it at the time, but that marked the advent of the most challenging three years of my life. What could have or maybe even should have leveled me, only strengthened me. And with each successive blow, I received blessings in abundance of my trouble. What was that? Call me Thomas.

May you be richly blessed through all of your days. The rest of the scripture? “Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? Or, what shall we drink? Or, with what shall we be clothed? (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Faither knows that you have need of all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” – Matthew 6:31-33