“A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.” Proverbs 18:24 (NIV)
RAMBLINGS from Connor’s dad – Connor called home yesterday from Liberty and got to hear about our “snowstorm”. He regretted missing it and wanted to hear how we were doing. So mom got to inform him of the snow, that quickly turned to ice in most of Atlanta. And how it had gone from being called “Snowjam 2014” to “Carmageddon”.
Unfortunately, I had front row seats to it. Around noon I had walked in to a restaurant across from the CDC, to meet a new spine surgeon in town. A few flakes were falling, but not sticking. When we finished lunch and walked out an hour later the sidewalk was already covered in snow. I spent the next couple of hours trying to get out of Atlanta. My office texted me that people who had flown in to meet me were in gridlock on I-85, so I had decided to go Peachtree and stay on secondary roads. That way I would have options on places to pull into if necessary to eat or sleep. Peachtree was a slow, painful, parking lot, moving a foot every minute or so. It took me over an hour to go about a mile, and I was still 23 miles from the office.
I begin to wonder where I would sleep as the icy conditions worsened. My 4×4 Jeep I drove could easily negotiate the snow. It was the 1000’s of cars in front of me that could not. Finally I saw a landmark, the Dunkin Donuts in Brookhaven, that reminded me a close friend lived near by. I called Grant and he graciously insisted I come by. And I accepted, thinking I would wait out the traffic, and then head out later that evening.
His wonderful wife was already baking brownies for us when I arrived, and he had a warm fire going in the den. Soon they were chopping up fresh vegetables, and we caught up on life as they worked in harmony to make me feel like an honored guest. The hot chowder was perfect for a cold day like we were having. We sat in front of the tv and watched the news about traffic not moving. I realized I might be there for the night. My hope of treking up Peachtree started to fade as the hours passed, and the cars didn’t. Grant, his wife Michele, and their son Cole, made me realize how blessed I was to be in a warm place, when so many were not.
I hated being away from my family, but if I had to be away from home, I couldn’t think of a more welcoming place to be. Grant and I who have known each other for over 30 years, talked into the night. When I got up early the next morning, he was already up waiting on me in the den. We caught up on our families, our friends, our struggles, our victories, and life in general.
When I finally headed north, just before lunch, they packed me food just in case I ran in to problems. I was glad I had chosen that route.
When we sat down for dinner the night before, I learned the Campbell’s have a neat way they bless their food. They go around and each one says a short prayer. Cole thanked God for the food we were about to eat. Grant and Michelle both prayed that God would protect the 1000’s of stranded motorists who were still stuck in their cars. I thanked Him for His provisions, for His love….and for the Campbells!
A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for a time of adversity. (Proverbs 17:17 NIV)