"And Moses said unto the people, Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord, which he will shew to you today."
Heavenly Hands, Greg Olsen
We sat there for a while as I cried and we tried to decide what to do. I was ravenously hungry, and DC gave me some of the food he had brought for his own sustenance at the hospital. I had only a little bit of water left in my handy hospital water bottle, and realized that if I were to be able to take my painkiller I had better save the rest.
We looked at the Interstate ahead in helpless frustration. I-30 eastbound was a parking lot. I-30 westbound, the direction we needed, was completely empty because of the police-block. Suddenly a helicopter flew overheard right in that direction, and I called out, “Please, take us with you!!” DC chuckled good-naturedly at his rather strange wife. Finally we decided to head back towards Little Rock, wondering aloud if maybe we could find a different way home that was open.
After heading back the wrong way, I thought I saw a car going on I-30 westbound. I called to DC to pull over. We pulled over in an abandoned gas station, and looked more closely. No, there were no cars getting through still.
I completely lost my composure at this point. I was filled with anxiety and fear over what would happen to us if we were stranded -- a three-day old baby in a cold car, with very little food and water, and the pain that I had to stay on top of, somehow. . . .I was sinking into complete panic. Poor DC had to be the strong one—I couldn’t even form a coherent sentence from crying too hard. He finally said, “I think this would be a good time to say a prayer.”
I don’t remember anything that he said. But I will never forget the unmistakable peace that settled on me during that prayer. I stopped crying. Chris stopped praying. Both of us sat there silently. Rosemary had been sleeping this whole time. It was now 1pm. Neither of us knew what to do still.
DC said, “Maybe if we head back towards Little Rock, we’ll see a way to turn around and go back the right way.” I said, “Okay,” and we started out again. He went onto the ramp that said it went to Little Rock.
And here’s the part that neither of us can explain.
After a minute or two of driving in those roundabout ramp-things, suddenly we found ourselves on the access road on the other side of the freeway, heading towards home! And we were past where the police had blocked it off!
I gasped, “How did we get here?!” DC said, “I have no idea.” And I said, “Well, keep driving!”
We were eight miles from the exit to our house. In stunned amazement, we drove past eight miles of stranded cars completely stopped on the other side of the freeway. Past news trucks and broadcasting towers sitting in the middle of our side of the freeway. Past deep water on both sides of the access road.
It was the most surreal thing I have ever experienced. As the miles passed, DC said, “How are we doing this?” And I said, “I don’t know. Keep driving!” I felt like I knew exactly how the Israelites must have felt, passing through the Red Sea on dry ground, with walls of water on either side.
I kept praying fervently, “Please let us get home. Please let us get home.”
Finally, unbelievably, we got to [our town]. As I saw the familiar parking lot of the Walmart by our house, I thought to myself, “Now that we've made it here, Mom and Dad could even rescue us in the Suburban if we needed.” But, we kept driving.
The main streets of [our town] were very clogged with people trying to get through to the state highway, an alternate to I-30 that was also supposedly closed. As I continued praying non-stop we crawled through, inching along through the traffic, till we got to our neighborhood.
We pulled onto our street. Still praying. And then into our driveway. I started crying again, this time out of sheer amazement and gratitude. It was now 1:30pm, time for my next dose of medicine.
With rain falling, instead of the lacy flakes of snow I had envisioned, I joyfully unbuckled Rosemary from her carseat and came inside to the excited shrieks of our sons, and the amazed tears of Mom and Dad.
Oh, how good it was to be home! I felt like now there could be any weather outside and I would still feel peaceful and happy! Exacto and Fluffy and Hummer all gave hugs and kisses to us and their sweet new baby sister, and they and my parents listened in grateful joy to our story. I told my boys, “Your prayers got us home today.”
Oh, how overwhelmingly thankful l felt to Heavenly Father for giving us this special miracle! Not only had He brought us the long-cherished hope of a new baby in our family, but He even made sure we were home for Christmas Eve, as our sons had prayed.
No helicopter needed.
I will love thee, O Lord, my strength.
The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust. . . .
In my distress I called upon the Lord, and cried unto my God: he heard my voice out of his temple, and my cry came before him, even into his ears. . . .
He sent from above, he took me, he drew me out of many waters. . . .
The Lord liveth; and blessed be my rock; and let the God of my salvation be exalted. . . .
Therefore will I give thanks unto thee, O Lord, . . . .and sing praises unto thy name.