I told you about my first car several weeks ago. I wish I could tell you I had a better experience with my second car, but it is what it is; Adventure and adversity. I had a 19 inch TV I had either bought, or acquired in a trade. I don’t really remember. My uncle, being a master trader, convinced me to buy a CB radio from him, and offer both the TV and the radio in trade to a man he knew, for a car he had. It was a 1975 Mustang. You heard me right; a 1975 Mustang. The ugliest Mustang body style ever made. It was red with a white rag-top, with dulling paint. It had not been well taken care of. It was sitting in his yard just rusting away. It had all kinds of problems, but my uncle assured me that he would help me get it going. He was a master mechanic, and I knew he could do it, so I made the deal, and started home. Immediately I noticed the smell of burning oil. The left side of the rear was lower than the right. The tires were bald and it smoked, but I had a car.
We got the car to my uncle’s house, and he looked it over to see what it needed. It needed to be jacked up, and a new car slid under it. That’s a funny way of saying it was a pile of junk. The motor was shot, and the transmission was on it’s way. The body had problems, and it was really unsafe. Well, there was nothing I could do but park it in the yard, and let it rust, or drive it until it wouldn’t go any more.
My dad told me about an old car he had owned when he was young. It was a mess, and he couldn’t keep it running, so when he got it going one last time, he drove it into the woods toward the river as fast as he could. He ran over briers, bushes, saplings and trees until he could go no further. He then got out, and walked away, leaving the car there to rot. He laughed when he told me an older man he knew found the car, drug it out of the bottom, fixed it, and drove it for several years.
As much trouble as I was having my car, I wanted to do something similar, but I was thinking more along the lines of driving it off a cliff. I imagined jacking the back up just enough to get the tires off the ground. Then I would start it up, place a large stone on the gas peddle, and pushing it off the jack. In my mind I could see the car burning out, slinging dirt everywhere as it flew of the cliff, and then exploding into a ball of flames as it tumbled to its resting place, or rather, its rusting place. There were a few snags in making my fantasy a reality, though. One, I didn’t really have a cliff anywhere close. Two, I was sure it would be a crime to do something like that, especially if I didn’t own the property where this imaginary event may occur, and three, I didn’t have a large stone for the gas pedal.
In reality, I didn’t really have the courage to actually destroy the thing, so I just drove it around, visiting family, until it would die. My cousin road around with me, and when it would die, he would jump in the driver’s seat, and I would push the car. He would let out on the clutch, and hopefully it would crank.
One time when it died, we were going up a hill. He got behind the wheel, and let the car roll backward. He couldn’t get it to go into gear to crank it. He was so focused on the gear stick, he didn’t realize he was about to go off the road into the river. At the last minute he turned just in time to avoid the water, and ended up in some bushes.
Another day, we were off on an old gravel back-road, and the thing died. It was flooded out, and wouldn’t start. The road was pretty flat, and the gravel was thick, so there was nothing we could do but call someone. We called my uncle, and he headed our way. There was only one problem; He was drinking. When he got there, he didn’t have a chain, nor a tow strap with him, so he said he would push us. Now, the reason one side of my car was lower than the other was it had air shocks, and the left one had a leak. I had aired it back up, and now the rear of the car was pretty high. It looked kind of like a dragster. When my uncle started pushing us, the bumpers seemed to match up, but as he drove faster, my bumper slid on top of his, lifting the back wheels off the road. I couldn’t get the car started that way.
Having not been driving long, I was pretty nervous any way, but knowing my uncle was drinking, I was downright scared. As he accelerated, we became terrified. We wanted him to stop, but we had no way of letting him know that. For a minute the bumper of my car was stuck on top of the bumper of his car, but when he stepped on his brakes we came loose. I tried letting out on the clutch, but it was useless. The car wouldn’t start. The tires just kept sliding on the gravel.
Finally we came to a stop in the middle of the road. When we looked back to see where my uncle was, we saw him speeding toward us, apparently with no intention of stopping. My cousin screamed, “He’s gonna hit us.” That’s exactly what he did, and we were going again, with the back wheels up in the air. Finally, the car started, and I put the pedal to the medal, hoping he would quickly realize the thing was running on it’s own. I drove straight to his house, and parked that death trap for a while, to let my nerves settle, and I didn’t start it back up until I knew he was sober.
Another time the car died, and we couldn’t get it to start at all. We were on the road just outside my uncle’s sister’s house. We went to call him on her CB radio. She wasn’t home, but her son was, and he was drunk. He let us make the call, but I believe my uncle was sleeping, or not at home, or something. I don’t recall just why but, he wasn’t coming anytime soon, so I told my cousin, we would just have to push the car home. I jokingly said, something like, “Come on, and help us push this car home,” to my cousin’s cousin. He was the guy who was drunk. He just looked at me, and I went on out to my car. All of a sudden, out of nowhere, there he was. He was acting insane, cursing, and saying all kinds of crazy stuff. He wanted to fight about what I had said. I told him I was only joking, but he wouldn’t stop. I was scared, but thank God for sending help. One of his friends came along, and convinced him that I didn’t mean anything by it.
I really wanted to get my car away from there now, as quickly as possible, and I wasted no time getting it to rolling. I stood up on the foot threshold, and steered the car until it slowed down, then I would step off, and get it to going as fast as I could again, then I would jump back up on the threshold again. I did this a couple of times, then when the car started slowing down again, I stepped down one last time.
The car was rolling much faster than I thought, so when my feet hit the ground that time, it was like they stuck to the pavement. Down I went on my left knee. It hit hard, and it’s still damaged to this day. I got up as quickly as I could to see where the car and my cousin were. He was still standing on the threshold of the passenger side. The car was still rolling with no driver. Just then the it left the road, and rolled up a steep embankment. It came to an abrupt stop as it hit something; Either a light pole, or a fence post. My cousin fell onto the ground, and I believe the car would have rolled over on him if the door had not been open. It stuck in the ground beside him at a ninety degree angle, preventing it from crushing him. I finally gave up, and got rid of that thing, and I was glad I did. I was better off without it. It was just too much trouble.
My experiences with that car reminds me of sin. We think it’s something we want, and if it’s not exactly what we want, we think we can fix it. We keep playing around with it even after it has caused us problems, and even after it almost kills us. In Job chapter 1, God said that Job was a righteous man, and he avoided evil. We need to be like Job. We need to learn to identify sin, and avoid it. We will be better off if we never get caught up in it in the first place.
Bible Truth Ministry
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