Stephen A. Peterson
Joanna McLoud, an Oklahoma State University sophomore, was home in Oklahoma City for her summer vacation. On a 100 degree July, 2006 afternoon, Joanna drove across the city to pay a visit with two of her sorority sisters’ neighborhood to talk about the past school year and to plan a fun activity before school began in August.
The trio had so much fun re-living their Freshman experience that Joanna ended up staying longer than she had planned. Nothing that it was 9:30 PM, Joanna excused herself and left to drive straight home.
As she walked towards her car parked under a dark sky near a blackjack oak tree, Joanna asked “God” to keep her safe from harm and danger. She unlocked her door, got in, turned on the ignition and drove towards home. On the say to her house, her car stalled then came to a complete stop.
“What is going on?” she thought. “This car was in the shop for repairs just yesterday. The mechanic said everything was okay. She became uneasy and began to pray asking God to protect her. At that very moment a feeling of calm and security seemed to envelop Joanna. Against her better judgment, Joanna got out of her car, opened the hood and with a flashlight checked everything under the hood. When she made her checks, she noticed the connector cable to her sparkplugs were unattached. At the moment of her discovery, she felt as thought someone was behind her. She then reached for and quickly re-attached the cables to their correct plugs. As she turned, there was the figure of a man standing no more than two or three arms lengths from her. Without a word and with her eyes down, she returned to her car, started the engine and left the area as quickly as she could arriving safely home.
The following morning, Joanna heard on a local radio station that a young girl had been raped and murdered on the very street where her car had stalled just five minutes after she had been there. Feeling overwhelmed by the tragedy of the death of this girl and the fact that this could have happened to her, Joanna began to cry.
Joanna immediately fell on her knees to thank God for her deliverance from the harm that occurred to the young girl. At that moment, she decided to go to the Oklahoma City Police Department. She believed she could identify the man she saw around her car that night. A police officer asked her if she would be willing to look at a number of suspects in a police lineup to determine if she could identify the person. Joanna agreed. When she saw the six men, she immediately was able to point out the man she had seen next to her car. For reasons unknown to everyone parent, the man confessed that he had committed the murder and rape.
The officer thanked Joanna for coming forward and asked if they could help her with anything. Joanna asked the officer if she could ask the man one question. That is, why he never attacked her when he had the opportunity to do so. When asked the question, the confessed perpetrator responded: “Because she had three big, strong men to her sides and one standing in front of her who would not permitted him to do anything. When she got into her car, they all came forward like they were going to hurt me. I was paralyzed. So I couldn’t do anything even if I wanted to.”
This short story illustrates the power of earnest prayer when applied to every day life.
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Thank you, Stephen, for sharing this story. It is a reminder that even in our happiest moments we must remember to pray before, during and after any event. The story captured my attention and I'm sure it will others.
Wow Stephen, my hair was standing as I reached the end. I wonder how many times we are unaware of the presence of Angels around us. It makes me ashamed to think I dont trust the Lord enough. This was a blessing. I encourage you to think about rewording your title if you like too, to grab the attention of the reader. For when I read it I thought it was just a prayer on deliverance or something on spiritual warfare. This was powerful and should be read by all. All glory be to God...why do we ever ever need to be afraid. Keep writing and being used by God. God bless Trudy