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Driving Across the African Country Roads (by Belinda Ng)

Many, O Lord my God, are the wonders you have done. The things you planned for us no one can recount to you; were / to speak and tell of them, they would be too many to declare." Psalm 40:5

To acknowledge God's wonder and power. There have been many opportunities this year to reflect on the span of my life's journey with the Lord. Among many things, I would like to recount an incident in which His divine protection was evident. God protected my husband and his vehicle load of passengers when it turned turtle.

Driving across the wilderness in Niger can be hazardous There could be animals wandering into the middle of the road. Alertness is hence, important. Sometimes it could be a burst tyre, as we travelled in the intense heat of the day, prolonging the time it took to reach our destination.

Another great danger was driving at night. A truck driver who did not get his headlights fixed leaving only one working could cause a tragic accident. In pitch darkness, one would assume that it was an oncoming motorcycle, realising only at a close range, it was actually a heavily loaded truck. To avert a head-on collision, a driver would quickly swerve only to land one's vehicle into a ditch or downslope to a lower terrain

So it was prudent to assume that you are always approaching truck which we named the 'one-eyed monster. My husband travelled a lot to visit various medical institutions he was taking care of. One time he was driving Benin. He had a full passenger load in his station wagon as well as a roof-rack full of luggage and two jerry cans of petrol. During such long trips, the driver had to make regular toilet stops.

Once as he was pulling slowly to the side of the road, he felt the ground giving way under. It happened so fast that there was no way to avoid the soft shoulder. The vehicle turned over a couple of times down the slope. It landed upside down. Andrew and his passengers managed to crawl out of the car safely.

Andrew was amazed and relieved that out of nowhere about 10 able-bodied Africans appeared and helped to turn the car upright. They refused to take any money for the help they rendered. That part of the highway was sparsely populated. There were no villages around. Andrew sensed the Lord's divine protection that no one was injured, the jerry cans of petrol did not burst into flames nor did the car suffer any damage.

Subsequently, whenever he drove past that stretch of the road he would look out for villages or people but there were none. He could only conclude that the 10 men must be the angels sent by the Lord to deliver them from the mishap. "He will command His angels... they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone." Matthew 4:6 ABOUT THE WRITER MS BELINDA NG has been serving with Serving In Mission (SIM) since 1977. After 12 years in Niger, she served as Personnel Director and Member Care and Education Consultant in the international office and then in East Asia She has two married sons and four granddaughters Recently she lost her husband, Andrew, to cancer.

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