Compounded Car Accident

This is my first traumatic memory.

I was about two and a half years old, sitting at the bottom of my parents driveway of their new house on Loumar Drive.

The driveway itself connected to Leroi Drive, because the house was a corner lot.

I remember there was sand at the bottom of the driveway.  I was playing with it.

Since I was so young, I did not perceive the danger of the car that was parked about 8 feet to my left.

The vehicle was owned by one of the two carpenters who was putting final touches on our house.

The driver of the car must have been oblivious to me, as he jumped in and began to move forward.

The next thing I knew, I was laying underneath the car crying.

Had the tire hit me I would have been crushed.

In 1962 cars had large wheels and a two-year old was small enough to be driven over without much of the undercarriage touching him.

The front of the car must have knocked me down and they heard my cry and stopped before driving away and potentially dragging me down the street.

The next thing I remember was being held up in the air like a wishbone, each one of the two men had me by an arm and was rushing me up the driveway into the house.

My mother stayed very calm, there were dozens of scratches, but all of them were on the surface.

I can even remember her bringing me upstairs into the bathroom and seeing myself in the mirror with those scrapes on my body.

I learned years later that my father had been offered a thousand dollar settlement from the insurance company of the driver of the car.

He argued that the money was not for him, but it was for his son.

They doubled the offer and he accepted two thousand dollars.

My father was not joking about where the money would go.

He was a very conservative investor.

He went out and purchased stock in my name from an electric utility that paid a dividend; (Southern Company; SO).

My dad had a hunch that electricity might be big in the south, with air conditioning and all those other new fangled concepts that were sweeping the country.

He instructed his stock broker to have all the dividends re-invested to buy more shares.

His plan worked flawlessly.

Most newlyweds are flat broke.

Unlike other 25 year olds in 1985 looking for an apartment, I had enough liquid equity in my SO stocks, to place a 20% down-payment on a $90,000 house, with money leftover for new furniture.

That accident, which could have just as easily taken my life, turned out to be a blessing.

God has a way of turning things around.

He also has a way of allowing lessons to be taught throughout the process.

One lesson I learned was that you can have financial success in the stock market, provided the risks are relatively low and the return is steady.

We never monitored Southern Company on a daily basis.

If it went down, that was good, because it meant the dividends would buy more shares.

If it went up, that was good, because it meant the dividends might be increased to a higher return.

When we put our faith in a loving God, we win when things go well and we win when things do not seem to be going well.

He knows the end from the beginning and the scriptures confirm it when it says in Romans 8:28:

And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.

Lord, help us to always stay conscious of Your pledge to be a loving Father who is there to make things right.

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