I do not normally post about things that happen in my life, but tonight the story is too great to pass up.
Today I went sledding. The plan was to meet some friends on the big hill near campus and use these old lunch trays that were hiding in our dorm kitchen. They worked well last time so even though there was twice as much snow this time, we figured they’d work. While waiting on our friends, my roommate and I started trying the trays out near our dorm on a smaller hill. There was a cute little child and his father just a little ways over. The father let us use the sled (the child got more enjoyment out of watching us go down the hill than he did going down the hill himself). When they were ready to head out, the father (who turned out to be a professor) said we could borrow the sled and return it tomorrow. The child was a bit hesitant and even shed a few tears. The father was insistent and convinced the child that he needed to share.
We went sledding. The sled worked much better than our lunch trays. The snow was perfect and packed down enough. Some kids had even built ramps to jump over. We piled on and soared down the hill. It was grand fun.
Until it wasn’t. Until we put three people on the sled and hit a stick. Then it felt like a rock dropped in my stomach. That child cried because he didn’t want to share his sled. We were going to make him never want to share again if we returned a sled with a hole in it! The kid might be in therapy until he’s 25 over this incident. Okay maybe that thought was a bit exaggerated (in our defense we didn’t have that thought until much later when we were on the hunt for a new sled). We made a few more trips down the hill. Why not? We’d already broken the sled so we knew we’d have to buy a new one anyway so might as well enjoy the time.
Then the hunt began. In still wet clothes we loaded up to go to Walmart.
To find out that they were out of sleds.
As was every other store in our small town. Well Ace Hardware had some sort of roll-up sled but the guy on the phone said he was leaving in about 5 minutes.
Let me just say here that the internet and smart phones are very useful. While I continued driving, my roommate was calling every place she could think of that might sell sleds. The lady in Dollar General told us to try Ollie’s in the next town over. So we called. After convincing the guy on the phone that we didn’t want sweatpants, he said that they had sleds. Thank goodness! We hopped on the interstate with high hearts.
Until we started looking for an address. Turns out smartphones are not always so smart. My roommate had called the Ollie’s in another state. The one in the town we were heading towards said they were out of sleds. Must not be snowing in the state next door or maybe they already own sleds.
Hearts sunk again and freezing cold (we’re still wearing wet clothes at this point), we start trying to call various places in this new bigger town. Finally my roommate decides to call a lady from our church who she claimed “has all the answers.” The lady suggested Lowe’s. Since we were almost to Lowe’s, we decide to forego the call and make the trek in the store.
I’m sure the store employees thought we were crazy when we all started giggling over a stack of sleds in the front of the store. I can picture us now: three college girls in wet clothing and no gloves giggling over a pile of sleds while trying to find a green one. We couldn’t find a green sled so we settled for the tye-dye sled that had green in it.
Lesson of this story: Buy your own sled.
No really. I think the lesson is that God does answer even the smallest prayers. We were feeling very anxious wondering how we could face this professor and tell him that we broke his child’s sled. God provided though and led us to the right place. He used that lady from our church. He provided what we needed at that moment.