Last week two of my friends were involved in serious hit-and-run accidents. I am grateful to God for answered prayer that they both seem to be making positive recoveries. My friend who was hit as a pedestrian early in the week lost a lot of blood and was grateful that passers-by had been able to contact his wife as well as calling an ambulance. I saw them both on the bus on Friday and she seemed very relieved that he was on the mend: despite obvious injuries to his face and needing a stick to support his walking, he was clearly making good progress, though understandably still rather shaken.
Someone did record the number plate of the car that hit him, and I hope that justice will be served while also hoping the driver might come to know forgiveness. Car insurance is so expensive in our local area; in part due to the number of uninsured drivers. This of course perpetuates the problem, leading fewer people to pay for car insurance, and perhaps increasing the likelihood that someone causing an accident will flee the scene. I guess it’s also part of human nature to want to avoid the consequences of our wrong actions. My friend who was injured while cycling on Friday night was also abandoned by the driver. Fortunately some local people heard the accident and came to his aid, calling an ambulance.
In addition to the team of skilled doctors and family and friends who rallied round to support him, the full force of local prayer support has also been mobilised. This is a family who have seen amazing answers to prayer for healing in the past, and friends from local churches and from further afield have united to pray for his full recovery. So far the news is very positive, praise God, but we know that the next few days are crucial. Again, we have also prayed for the driver involved: that he might come forward, hear what we hope will be a story of full recovery, acknowledge his wrong actions and find forgiveness.
As a Christian, I believe we all need to receive mercy and forgiveness, and that we can come to know an awesome God with power to heal and change lives. I am encouraged how many people come to faith following difficult circumstances like these, and hope that there will be a good witness to friends, relatives and medical staff. As I said, this family have strong testimonies of God’s faithfulness and I hope their friends will recognise that there is more than coincidence in the way they have been protected and healed. Their ongoing friendship will also be a strong witness to others, in a way that some evangelism misses completely.
Some styles of evangelism seem to me a bit like hitting and running. Some street preachers make their points so forcibly that listeners may feel attacked or hit, and then the lack of any follow up makes me wonder how effective even a good message may be. The guy from another local church who approached me on the street recently was much more friendly, and perhaps is there frequently enough to build up some kind of relationship with passers-by. He claimed to recognise me, and asked me to pray for his work while I asked him to pray for my friend who had been injured. All credit to him, he did this straight away, with gentle confidence. May our prayers be answered by our loving God who has all power and never leaves us.