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Norma’s Cookbook ...
a marriage saved


Dr. Gene Grumbley

Guest Columnist

  While driving home on I-285 from a birthday celebration, the tail lights of a big box truck in front of me came on suddenly, so I quickly jammed my brakes hard. Just when I was thanking God for stopping in time, it was as if my brakes released and I slowly rolled into the back of that truck. The hood of my car hit the truck and crumpled up like tinfoil. The impact was so light, I hardly felt anything. My concern was to get away from that truck and onto the shoulder before I was rear-ended by one of those fast moving vehicles behind me. With flashers on, I managed to do just that, and the young man driving the truck ran back to see if I was injured but did not find me there. I yelled at him from the shoulder, so he got back in his truck and moved it out of the traffic also. During the 25 minutes or so that it took the police to get there, we talked. He was so upset with the lady that had stopped in the middle of the freeway to move an empty cardboard box from in front of her, and then drive away. He said he was only inches away from hitting her and could have killed her at the speed he was going. I maintained my cool and he couldn’t understand why I was not angry at him for stopping so suddenly. Somehow, I knew that this accident was no accident; that God had allowed it to happen for a reason.

  Several times he commented on how dumb that woman was to stop in the middle of that freeway. The police finally got there and gave me a ticket for following too close and rear-ending the truck, even though I told him the truck had front-ended me. I actually felt sorry for the young man and the time it took to get this all settled, so I felt the urge to give him one of the cookbooks of Norma’s recipes.

  I was able to drive the car home without any problems and called a wrecker service to have it towed to a friend’s body shop. I didn’t want my daughter just in from Texas, nor any of her three brothers, to know about the wreck, and it worked just fine. She and I went out to dine and when we returned there was a message on my machine. Thank goodness Jenny had gone into her bedroom, because the message was from the young man checking to see if I was okay. He also said that he believed God had put me in his path today, and that his heart was really touched as he read the cookbook, with all the stories about being happily married for almost 58 years. He asked me to call him back.

  When I called him back from inside my bedroom, where Jenny could not hear, he told me that he and his wife had been having many disagreements and fusses lately. He said they sat down and read the stories in the book together, and that for the first time he realized that it was him who needed to change and that she said it was her.

  Then his wife said, “Do you think we can have a marriage as happy, as long and as fruitful as their marriage”? He replied, “Yes we can!” He then said to me, “Dr. Crumbley, God put an angel in front of me today; I want to take you out to dinner one night so my wife can meet you.”

   I told him I was no angel, far from it, but that I certainly wanted to meet her and I would go out to dinner with them. I was so moved by this conversation that tears were running down my face, and I just had to tell Jenny about it and she was moved to tears also. But then, she jumped all over me for not telling her up front about the accident.

  Now for the rest of the story:

  After hearing this young man’s story, I truly believe God allowed this to happen to mend this marriage. He allowed me to wreck my car without anyone getting injured and no harm to the truck. The insurance company totaled my 2005 Towncar with a fair cash settlement, and two weeks later I was the owner of a newer 2007 model, with less miles and more features, almost like new. God took away from me, God blessed them and God restored to me, even better than what I had before. What an awesome God we serve.

  That’s my story and I’m sticking to it!




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