Sunday, October 14, 2007

"Need Directions?"

Today's evangelism did not go at all as planned. PRAISE GOD!!

My community has once again made the national news. Late last night a horrendous traffic collision occurred on the I-5 (Golden State) Freeway. At least 6 big rigs and an unknown number of passenger vehicles collided inside a truck route tunnel. Explosions and the subsequent fire has left the integrity of the freeway over-crossing in question. Sadly, two truck drivers were killed--their bodies burned beyond recognition. Another ten motorists were injured. It is still unknown, almost 20 hours after the crash, if anyone else perished in the flames. Due to the heat and crumbling concrete, firefighters have yet to make their way through the tunnel to clear the wreckage and recover any bodies that may still be inside.

Southern California freeways are a nightmare on a good traffic day. The I-5 Freeway is the primary freeway from the California-Mexico border, to the Washington-Canada border. All lanes on both sides of the freeway remain closed, due to the collision and fire. Traffic in town was reminiscent of the weeks following the 1994 Northridge Earthquake, when the freeways in our area collapsed.

The plan for the day was to attend our community's annual Home and Business Expo, at our local community college. I got to the expo early to do a little recon (size of crowd, security presence, etc). As I sat in my car, I watched a truck pull into the parking lot. The occupants were a man and a woman. The man was driving. He pulled out a map book. It was obvious to me that they were lost and trying to find their way around the freeway closure.

I got out of my car and approached the truck, waving my hand to say hello. The man rolled down the window.

"Are you trying to get around the freeway closure?" I asked.

"Yes." He answered.

"Let me help you." I said.

I gave them directions. They were very grateful and quickly got back on the road.

I walked back into my car. As I sat down, I noticed another car filled with "lost" souls pull into the parking lot. This time the occupants received million-dollar bills, along with directions.

Then the light bulb went on. :-)

I called my brother-in-law and asked him to stop by the store on his way to the expo and buy several cases of small bottles of water. I drove back to my office, grabbed my easel, a large pad of paper, and sharpie pens, and drove back to the expo.

Once my brother-in-law, nieces, and nephews arrived, I set-up the easel on the sidewalk facing the street, at the entrance to the parking lot. (My nephew, Jay, is standing next to the easel, in the above photo.) For the next four hours we waved at passing motorists, drawing their attention to the sign. We went through three cases of water and a bunch of gospel tracts, as we provided directions, water, and the gospel to motorists trying to find their way.

God is sovereign, in all things! While I wish the tragedy on the freeway did not happen, I give praise and thanks to God for allowing good to come out of the smoke and flames (Romans 8:28). And the good was that many people who were forced off the freeway, received something else they were not expecting--the Law and the Gospel.

To God, and God alone, be all the glory!!


Lori said...

This picture makes me smile everytime I see it. Two reasons. Your creative ideas to witness. And you step up and do it!! Secondly, your cute little nephew. This picture shows the true joys of your heart!!


Shoots said...

Hey that was great and I would do the same thing. It is said it takes tragedy to awaken people to real life. But was wondering if I could turn this into a gospel tract? I had an ideal and if I could post this on "Myspace blog" and "Hisholyspace" blog? Thanks

Tony Miano said...


Post it wherever you like. :-)

All I ask is that you post it in its entirely, do not edit the content, and attribute the source.

Thanks. :-)