Matthew Weller - 06/01/2007
I had the thought about two years ago to believe for the Lord to keep my car going without gas. I had been listening to UBM for a few months and a few faith ideas came to me, this being one of them. Of course, I guess I wasn't very ready for it, because I chickened out while coming up to the gas station going to my house. I asked the Lord for a sign, that if He wanted me to continue driving without filling up that He would make part of the neon sign go out on the gas station building. Well, it didn't, so I pulled in and filled the car up with gas. I'm actually glad I did that night, because I had to travel an hour and a half the next day to a place I had never been before on the hottest day of the year with no air conditioning.
Oh, I live in Texas, too, and it gets really hot and humid here. :-P My car ended up acting like it was overheating and a few lights came on during the trip, so trying to go without gas back then would have made me a nervous wreck. A year and a half went by without me thinking of doing that again. But around the last week of March 2007, the thought again came to me. So I prayed to the Lord and commanded my car to be filled with gas. It was already near empty, so this was a good time to begin this trial. I got a little nervous when it got below "E" because I normally don't even let it go too far below the 1/4 mark before I fill up. But I kept driving on it believing that it was a full tank. The Lord even gave me a dream a couple of days after I began this confirming the supernatural provision. It was on March 24, 2007 and this is what I dreamt:
My car died, acting like it was out of gas. But the Lord gave me peace and faith to believe it was full of gas. After a little bit of time the car started back up and the fuel gauge went to Full. I drove the car left over the bridge spanning the highway with joy and rejoicing! !
On three separate occasions, my car would act like it was out of gas when I went to start it up, but I would just sit there in my car, repeating over and over that "My God shall supply my every need according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus", and whatever other verses came to mind that had to do with God providing. The first time it happened, my neighbor had just come home and was outside. I wanted to wait until he got inside to try out my "full" tank of gas, but I turned the key before he got near the door. The car made a sound like it did not have enough gas, and I felt really dumb when the neighbor looked over at me like I had a severe problem. After he went inside, the car started just fine. The second time it happened, there he was again. The car would not start this time, even after he went inside. But I kept trying and eventually had to go back in my house to call my friend Kellie to agree with me for a full tank of gas. She did and I went back outside and turned the key. It didn't start at first, but I persisted and it finally stayed running. So I drove off with no problems. The third time was the worst because this is where I failed. I had gone to visit Kellie and was going back home. Her neighbor was sitting near the window facing Kellie's house. (Before I go on, I just want you to know that I hardly ever see her neighbor or mine, and all three times the car would not start, there they were. The Lord knows how to put us in a state of weakness.) Anyway, the car would not start for awhile, and when it did finally start up it would die immediately. After I had been out there for about 30 minutes turning the key time and again, Kellie came outside and I told her I didn't know what was going on. She asked if I wanted us to lay hands on the gas tank and command it be filled, so I said sure. We did and she went back inside. Still, the car would not keep going once it was started. I sat there and tried for, I'm not exaggerating, about 3 hours. I finally quit trying and was very, very upset, because my whole desire in life is to live by faith, and if I couldn't do that there was almost no use in living. I was that upset. So I got out of my car and walked around outside for awhile, and then eventually walked home. The next day Kellie handed me the gas can for her lawn mower which had just enough gas in it to get me to the gas station. I barely made it there, slowly rolling up next to the pump.
I cried out to the Lord, asking Him what went wrong. I went to the website and scrolled down to a "random" teaching called Desires of the Spirit and listened. At the very end of the study, David talked about how he had prayed for a couple of people in faith for some things, but they never came to pass. David said he had asked the Lord why they didn't come to pass, and the Lord told him it was because of idolatry. So I thought to myself, how was I in idolatry? Then I remembered what had happened a few days before this failure. A sister named Ellie had called me and asked me to come help her at her work because she was behind a little in her job. I never confirmed I would be there, but I did say I would try to come help her if I could. Well, that day arrived, and instead of driving by faith on my "full" tank of gas downtown to where she worked, I was lazy and did not get up that morning. I felt like the Lord was telling me that because I did not help her when she needed it, how could I expect help when I needed it? That made sense to me, so I called Ellie and apologized to her about it and told her about my failure in faith. She mentioned that she was curious as to why she felt led to ask me for help, partly because her husband had also asked for my help to mow their lawn at around the same time. I did get to go help him, though. The Lord also brought that dream I mentioned earlier to my attention. I had wondered why, in the dream, I had driven off to the left, because the left is the way of the goats and not the sheep. But it dawned on me that if I had gone to Ellie's work, I would have to have gotten off of the highway and turn left to get there. The dream would have been perfectly fulfilled if that had happened.
OK, enough of the failure part. I like talking about my failures because I get uplifted when I hear of others failing first and then coming through victorious later. It kind of softens the blow when I fail myself, and I hope it does the same to some of the brethren out there who have been having a hard time walking by faith.
A week or so ago, I decided to try it again. After all, the righteous fall seven times and get back up again. The only real failure comes when you give up completely. So, take three! I did forget one thing from the previous paragraphs. The thought occurred to me before I tried this out the second time that if the car always shows empty and God supplies our needs, that God would always supply gas because I would always be in need. Even though I had enough money to pay for gas, I wanted God to provide it freely so that I could have a testimony to share. I think, though, that the testimony itself was part of the idolatry, because it was more for me to show what I could do in faith than what God can do with the faith He had given. I was lifting myself up too much, even though it would have given God the glory. It most likely would have given me pride, but I always ask the Lord to keep me from it. So I guess He did. Failures are good pride killers. Also, I was going to send that testimony out to UBM, but before I could do that, the failure happened. So, obviously, I didn't have a testimony left to send. OK, OK, on with the victory part!
The third time has been great. So far I have had the same three occasions where the car acted like it was out of gas. The first time, two of my neighbors who live across the street from me were outside. But it didn't bother me as much as it did the last time. When the car didn't start, I simply asked the Lord for His peace and faith to go through with this. I did look in my rear-view mirror a couple of times to see if they were still there as I was turning the key in the ignition. They were, but I kept trying. The car started pretty quickly and I took off. I don't remember anyone being there the second time, but I just sat there and prayed for the Lord's help to get me through this, and the car started up fine. The third time took the longest for the car to start up and keep running. It started acting like it did a couple of months ago when I had failed, but I kept repeating a couple of verses and asking for His help. I had a peace about it, much more than I ever had previously. Of course, the devil would always try to tell me that it only started up again because it had just enough gas left in it to do so, but I knew I could trust in the Lord to get me through this. After very little time, the car started up again and I took off, very, very happy because I survived through three trials, going farther than I had before. But now I know that I can just ask for His help and rebuke unbelief and fear when they arise, and all will be well. I am very excited and feel like this is the last time I will ever have to buy gas again. Even if I have to go through this trial daily and "gather a day's portion", so to speak, it's worth it. I thought after failing it would be harder for me to try again, but it has actually been easier. Another one of Satan's lies.