Two days after Christmas our van was stolen.  Phil filed a police report and started a claim with our insurance.  Needless to say it was a stressful day.   On New Year’s Day the police left us a voice mail at 3am stating the van had been found and was involved in a hit and run with 2 parked cars.  The thieves jumped out and stole another vehicle and escaped.  The next day I went to the impound lot to take pictures, take anything out that was left and of value (which wasn’t much) and to release it to our insurance so they could inspect the van.  In the end it was declared a loss as they estimated the cost to fix it would be more than $10,000.

There are several reason why I would prefer to have the van repaired and returned then a settlement.  It was a wonderful van and it made our weekly paper day run quite a bit more smoothly.  It was also nice to have a 3rd vehicle (in Oct the Lord blessed us by giving us my grandpa’s minivan after he had passed away) that my mom was able to drive.  It was a blessing to have a 3rd vehicle so that when the other van or the Honda needed work it wouldn’t have as much impact on us.  I know, these are 1st world problems right??

To add to my frustration, the van we still have has suddenly developed issues, some of which cannot be fixed by replacing parts.  The one and only side door is now broken and takes quite a bit of strength to open and close.  The sensor for the door doesn’t work properly and at times the van thinks the side door is open and will not stop the ‘open door’ dinging.   So, we are praying about using the insurance money to buy another van that will better suit our family and paper route needs.

Phil has had a really great attitude about the whole thing and has lead us in prayer, almost daily, about the thieves somehow being impacted by Jesus and coming to see the grace that only Jesus can provide.  He has been a wonderful example to me and the kids on how to handle this situation.  I was quite angry but his commitment to pray for the thieves has truly helped me work through my anger.

I do want justice for those that stole our van but the Lord has convicted me that their salvation is much more important…. and so I too pray for them and finally my prayers have been sincere.



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