Provoked by an Angel
91:9-12, “9 If
you say, “The Lord
is my refuge,” and you make the Most High your dwelling, 10 no
harm will overtake you, no disaster will come near your tent. 11 For he will
command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways …” NIV
It was the summer of 1986. School had dismissed for the summer
break. Carol, my wife, and I had
started a TransAlive USA ministry for truckers nationwide. It had been difficult getting it off
the ground. You did not always
have the resources you needed.
Or families had needs the ministry was not providing at the
It seemed that God
wanted to know if we were serious about our commitment to His ministry
before He released His full blessings on His endeavor through us. And it also seemed He wanted us to
know that we needed to learn to depend upon Him for everything we did
through the ministry. It was not
our sponsors who were doing it; it was God working through them.
While raising funds
to support the family and the ministry effort I had signed on with
Overland Stage Company, a charter bus company in Fort Worth. I was a part-time driver for
them. Prior to working with
them, I had driven for other charter companies in the Fort Worth/Dallas
I actually started
with Overland Stage in November, 1985 the previous year just before
Thanksgiving. My first dispatch
was a ski trip to Colorado over the holidays. I needed the money so I accepted the
charter. It meant being away
from home on Thanksgiving, but it was food for the family for the next
The ski trips were
divided into two legs. Ski trips
to Colorado had too many miles for one driver to pull straight
through. The first leg was from
Fort Worth/Dallas to Amarillo, TX.
There you met your relief driver. The first leg driver called about 30
minutes out to awaken second leg driver before arrival.
The second leg was
from Amarillo to the ski areas in Colorado i.e. Winter Park, Keystone,
Breckenridge, Vail or points in between with snow.
company flew the second leg drivers to Amarillo; they checked into a
motel room with two beds – one used by second leg driver until first
leg driver got there. The other
bed was used by the first leg driver when he arrived.
second leg driver went on to Colorado through the night. The first leg driver flew back to
Fort Worth the next morning.
Many times, the second leg driver would be in Colorado with the
skiers on the slopes before the first leg driver got back to Fort
the ski charters had more miles than one driver could drive legally in
one day. This practice – known
as platoon driving – is common for companies to cover charters going
Stage used only sleeper coaches and the charter group slept while we
drove. They were not aware of
the switching of drivers and were concerned only with being on the
slopes the next morning.
was considered a ‘hill driver’ due to my experience and I was always
assigned the second leg of the trip.
I did not mind though it meant driving through the night.
the rest prior to the coach getting to Amarillo, was not that
difficult. And the time change
gave you another hour to get your charter group to the slopes by 8 AM
the next morning.