by Charles R. Swindoll
In September, Terry Shafer was strolling the shops in Moline, Illinois. She knew exactly what she wanted to get her husband, David, for Christmas. A little shop on Fifth attracted her attention, so she popped inside. Her eyes darted toward the corner display. "That's it!" she smiled as she nodded with pleasure. "How much?" she asked the shopkeeper.
Her smile faded into disappointment as she realized David's salary as a policeman couldn't stand such a jolt. Yet she hated to give up without a try, so she applied a little womanly persistence. "Uh, what about putting this aside for me? Maybe I could pay a little each week, then pick it up a few days before Christmas?"
"No," the merchant said, "I won't do that." Then he smiled. "I'll gift-wrap it right now. You can take it with you and pay me later," he said. Terry was elated.
Then came Saturday, October 1. Patrolman David Shafer, working the night shift, got a call in his squad car. A drugstore robbery was in progress. David reacted instantly, arriving on the scene just in time to see the suspect speed away. With siren screaming and lights flashing, he followed in hot pursuit. Three blocks later the getaway vehicle suddenly pulled over and stopped. The driver didn't move. David carefully approached the suspect with his weapon drawn. In a split second, the door flew open as the thief produced a .45-caliber pistol and fired at David's abdomen.
At seven o'clock in the morning a patrolman came to the door of the Shafer home. Calmly and with great care, he told Terry what had happened.
Stunned, Terry thought how glad she was that she had not waited until Christmas to give her husband his present. How grateful she was that the shopkeeper had been willing to let her pay for it later. Otherwise, Dave would have surely died. Instead, he was now in the hospital---not with a gunshot wound, but with only a bad bruise. You see, David was wearing the gift of life Terry could not wait to give---his brand-new bulletproof vest.
Within the movement of events is the Designer, who plans and arranges the times and the seasons, including the minutest detail of life. You question that? Many do.
But unless I miss my guess, David and Terry Shafer don't. It's funny . . . people who survive a calamity don't have much struggle with sovereignty.
Behind the maze is the Master.