Thursday, December 14, 2006

The Lord’s Provision in Transportation

I thought I’d take the opportunity today to introduce you to our new (as of April…so “not-so-new” now) van that the Lord blessed us with.

In March, Sheri was driving our old van and was involved in a major accident. This caused her to go into labor, and she delivered our beautiful daughter by emergency c-section that night.

With the birth of our baby we were going to outgrow our old van anyway, so this took care of our predicament on how to sell it.

Though we “only” have six children, I found a 15 passenger van in Tulsa. We had moved to Oklahoma City at the end of February. It is a 2001 year model with only 10,100 original miles on it when I bought it. It has leather seating and a whopping 8.1 Liter V8. This is the same engine found in some motor homes. It’s got plenty of power, but leaves a lot to be desired in gas mileage. We get about 10 mpg.

However, this has been a huge blessing to us. I paid $8000 cash for it with money from the insurance we had on the old van, combined with our tax refund, and a couple of monetary gifts we received after our accident.

So, since we have no debt, it’s much easier to keep fuel in it. Since getting it in April it now has close to 20,000 miles on it. When the odometer rolls to 20,200 we will have put as many miles on it as it had in the initial five years it was basically setting in the original owners driveway.

We get quite a few turned heads when we are driving down the interstate, especially now that I have added two large Christian fish symbols, with six little fish following behind, on our back door.

We are praying that the Lord would help us add rear air conditioning to it, as the children in the back get hot in the summer. However, it is in very good condition, and after finally getting rid of the cigarette smoke smell, it has become quite an excellent family mover. (BTW - We removed the very back seat that seats 4 - that gave us a lot of storage space, and it will still hold 11 like that. If our family grows to where we need it or we want to take more friends, we can always reinstall the back seat.)

Oh, and by the way, the flames are just an “added bonus” to help my ordinarily very conservative wife learn not to be embarrassed by outside stuff. :-) I think the Lord must have a sense of humor. I and the children love the flames! We definitely don’t have a hard time finding this van in a crowded parking lot!


Lisa @Me and My House said...

Hi Mike - from Lisa on QF list,

My dh has been looking for the big and little fish for our Suburban for nearly a year. Where do you find them? Neither our local Christian bookstores, nor anywhere we've been on trips, has them.

BTW, we're on our 3rd Suburban. We've been sending them out as fast as new ones have been born for the last several years. So they've been full all along, just different children filling them.

Mike Southerland said...

I found them at Mardel. I believe it was $4 for each big fish and $4 for a package of 2 little fish. So, it cost about $20 for our "set."

Mike Southerland said...

Update - Just in time for Jamestown we now have rear A/C!