Dusty Wilson,
Highline Community College

[January 22, 2012] —

Our car’s squeaky brakes caused this mathematician to turn mechanic due to these tough economic times! Perhaps you can relate.

It was the Christmas holiday when the brakes were beginning to rap out a nice beat and a CV boot was cracked. So I asked a student friend of mine if he would mind lending a hand for this simple half day job.

Surprisingly, I was still calm when the task stretched into the second day. Sure it was Christmas Eve, but isn’t this called “Christmas Brake”? Everything seemed to button up nicely … except for the intermittent grinding sound that seemed to be coming from the new CV boot.

Major Problem

Had I poorly packed the grease?
Were the ball bearings smoking with every turn?
Had I just botched a simple job replacing it with the nightmarish task of replacing an axle?

By then I was no longer calm, in fact I was freaking out (the technical term is “perturbed” or “distraught”).

So I did what most of us do when we get in over our head. I called another friend (this time a retired mechanical genius) and said, “I can’t do it! Can you help?” He graciously offered to see what he could do. After a minute of listening to the rock concert in my brakes, he made his initial diagnosis (I think he said that a thingy was rubbing the whatchamacallit). So we popped the tire off to take a look.

Just One Touch

My friend took his hammer and carefully hit the assembly one single time. We put the tire back on. That was it. One single tap was all it took. No more grinding.

The power of that imagery leaves me awestruck. My plaguing car problems, our family foibles, the roof that leaks, the students that complain, the coworkers that either miss the “co” or the “work” … Our problems are just one single tap away from being solved in the hands of our Master.

Why He doesn’t solve all our problems this simply, I don’t know. Pain and suffering of many varieties are all around us. But this simple personal experience encourages me to remember that God, the Creator and Master, is in control. Not only that, He cares for us, hears our prayers, and acts on our behalf whenever we ask Him to do so.

He invites us to “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.” Matt. 7:7

© 2012 Dusty Wilson
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