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“I’m so excited,” Jessie exclaimed as she helped Justin smash his sleeping bag into the back of her family’s van.
“Me, too,” Justin replied. “It’ll be great. We’ll be camping and looking at cool places.”
“And going on rides at the amusement park. Yay!” Jessie squealed. “I can’t wait.”
“Okay, kids,” said Jessie’s dad. “Which van do you want to ride in first?”
“How about riding in our van, Jessie?” Justin asked. “You can help Ellie color in her new coloring book.”
“That sounds great,” Jessie agreed. She turned and gave her dad a quick kiss and ran toward Justin’s van. “I’ll see you later, Daddy!”
Justin and Jessie clambered into the back of the van and fastened their seat belts.
Ellie was already strapped into her car seat and scribbling in her new coloring book.
“I’m drawing, Justin,” she said proudly.
“I see that, Ellie,” Justin replied.
“It looks very pretty,” said Jessie.
Justin’s mom and dad climbed into their seats and started the engine.
“Here we go, everybody!”
They were off on their adventure. Justin and Jessie had been best friends and neighbors for as long as they could remember, but this was the first time the two families had ever gone on a long trip together. They were all looking forward to it.
“How long do we have to drive today, Dad?” Justin asked.
“Uh, let’s see.” Dad thought for a minute. “I think we’ve got about three hours before we get to the first place. That town has a carnival we can stop at for lunch and maybe go on some rides.”
“Yeah!” Justin replied. “I like rides.”
Ellie looked up. “I like rides, too. I go round and round on the horsey.”
“Oh. You mean the merry-go-round with the ponies?” asked Jessie.
“Yup,” said Ellie, nodding her head.
“Then,” Dad continued, “we drive about two more hours to a campground by a lake.”
“That sounds super. I love camping!”
They rode along the highway listening to music. Sometimes Jessie would turn around and peek out the back window to make sure her parents were still right behind them in her family’s van. The kids colored in their books, and Justin’s parents chatted with each other up front.
Suddenly, Justin heard a strange noise. It sounded like a tea kettle whistling—wheeee!
“What is that?” Mom asked, looking startled.
Justin sat forward trying to see what was going on as Dad slowed the van down and pulled over to the side of the road. Jessie’s dad pulled over too. He got out of his van and walked toward Justin’s dad, who was opening the hood. The two men peered at the engine, trying to figure out what the problem was.
Justin’s mom opened her door to step out of the van.
Justin shouted to her, “Hey, Mom! Can we come out too?”
“You kids stay inside. There are too many cars driving by out here.”
“Oh well,” Jessie sighed. “I guess our dads can fix whatever it is.”
“I hope so. I’m getting hungry. I want to get to the carnival so we can eat!”
“I hungry, too,” Ellie whined.
She scrunched down in her seat and kicked her feet. Ka-plunk. Ka-plunk. Ka-plunk.
Justin and Jessie crawled into the front seats so they could hear their parents talking outside.
“I called the tow truck, but they said it would be an hour or so,” Justin’s mom announced to the others.
“Aww. We’ll have to miss the carnival and just go straight to the campground,” said Jessie’s mom sadly.
The time ticked slowly by as they all waited for the tow truck.
“Can we eat something?” asked Justin. “I’m starving!”
“I guess we can use the food we packed for camping,” said Jessie’s mom. “I’ll go make some sandwiches.”
“Where is that tow truck?” Justin’s mom asked. “It’s been over an hour!”
Justin’s dad shrugged. “I don’t know. I’ll call them again.”
“Mom,” asked Justin. “How come God doesn’t just make the car start again so we can go?”
“Well, the car has a leak that needs to be fixed and we have to trust that God has a good reason for making us wait.”
“But I wanted to go to the carnival.”
“We all did, Justin. But there’s nothing we can do except pray that God will help us and wait to see what he will do.”
Finally, after what seemed like forever, the tow truck pulled up.
“Sorry you had to wait so long,” said the driver, “but there was a big accident on the highway up ahead, and I had to tow those cars before I could come help you.”
“Oh no! An accident? Are the people okay?” asked Jessie.
“Yeah. One person got a broken arm, and others got bumps and bruises. You guys got lucky since you could’ve been right in the middle of it, if your car hadn’t decided to go kaput.”
Justin stared with wide eyes at the driver. “I don’t think that was luck. I think that was God.”
Dad smiled. “I think you’re right, Justin. We were all fussing because we had to wait, but it turned out waiting was the best thing we could’ve done.”
“You might be right,” agreed the driver. “Sometimes we have to wait on purpose.”
Justin & Jessie show kids how the Bible applies to real life! These weekly stories are part of Answers Bible Curriculum, our full-Bible, chronological Sunday school program for all ages.