By Courtney Tyler
My family and I had just moved out of the big city of Sydney, Australia, to a much quieter place on the coast called Tewantin. We quickly discovered that one of our favourite places was the Noosa River.
It was a warm but beautiful evening and my Mum and Dad had taken my younger sister, Katelyn, and me down to the river. Mum and Dad had put my bike and Katelyn’s tricycle in the back of our red car. My bike had training wheels because I was still learning how to balance.
When we got down to the river we bought hot fries and got out the salad and buns we had with us. While we ate, we chatted and laughed. The sun was setting and the beautifully coloured lorikeets started their songs in the nearby paper-bark trees. We finished eating our meal and slowly walked back to the car. I glanced over to the eating shelter we had just come from. I never realised just how important this area would be in a matter of hours.
We slowly went past the playground, the other eating areas, the giant pelican, and the recreational boat riding building. Then we passed a car park [parking lot] and got to the boardwalk. We walked along the boardwalk and looked out over the calm water reflecting the last rays of a gorgeous sunset. I had always liked the river and was really enjoying myself.
We kept going until we came to the tennis courts. I went around one side, and the rest of my family went around the other. I got to the place where the two paths met again, and my parents and sister weren’t there!
Oh, no! I thought, my heart starting to beat a little faster. They must have gone on ahead. So I pedalled hard, trying to catch up to them. I went only a little bit farther and realised they weren’t up ahead.
I thought, What do I do now? With dread filling my heart I decided that I should ride back to the car, hoping to find my parents there. So back I went as fast as I could, past the tennis courts, the boat riding building, the giant pelican, the eating areas, and the playground. I passed a few people walking their dogs and riding their bikes, but I could not see my parents anywhere!
By the time I got back to the car, it was getting cooler and darker. My family was not at the car. Lots of different kinds of music were playing from the nearby restaurants, and I could hear lots of laughing and talking, too. Now I was really, really scared. With my heart beating uncontrollably, I realised I was lost! Nighttime is not safe for young girls, so I needed to find my parents–and fast.
I decided that Jesus could help me, so I prayed this prayer: “Dear Jesus, please help me find my parents and sister. Thank You, Jesus. Amen.”
I sat on my bike at the front of the car and started to cry. A young lady about 25 years old came over and asked me why I was upset and what the matter was. I told her I was lost and could not find my parents. She gently said to me, “That’s OK, I’ll help you find your Mum and Dad.” Slowly we started back up the path I had just ridden my bike down. This time, though, I felt safe and secure with this lady.
We got only a little way up the path, and I saw my dad running toward us. I was so excited to see him. I almost fell off my bike as I cried, “There’s my dad!” I dropped my bike and ran to him. My heart went back to its normal pace as we thanked the lady for helping me and she went back to the eating area. Dad and I sat down and waited for Mum and Katelyn, who were still coming because Katelyn was much slower on her tricycle. Now reunited with my family, we happily made our way back to the car.
God will help you when you cry out to Him. Psalm 120:1 assures us of that. Further, Psalm 121:2 also tells us that our “help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth.” I trusted in God when I said that prayer. The lady who helped me, angel or not, was an angel to me that night.
Photos copyright 2010 Thinkstock.com