James, my 22 year-old-son, had a nice, little Corsica that served him well for a couple of years, but alas, all good things must end, and the engine totally blew on the Corsica during the winter. James has been working at Home Depot and saving his money, so that he could buy a car that could get him back and forth from college in the fall. The past few weeks he has been combing Craigslist and Bookoo (a local online yard sale) for a deal on a car. James and a man from our church who works on cars for a living, had looked at 3 cars, but none of them fit the bill. The last car was a sharp, silver '99 Mustang GT. Brother Steve checked out the car for James, and found a couple of things that needed to be fixed, but the work could easily be done. We were all so excited for James! A week ago from this past Saturday, the young lady and her boyfriend brought the car over and the papers which needed to be signed. When my husband looked at the papers, he saw that there was a lien on the car, and possible another lien; he was not comfortable with the amount of paperwork and the fact that there was not a title which was what he had asked for. Daryl kindly and tactfully asked the couple to meet us at the DMV on Monday morning, and we would ask someone to explain the paperwork to us there, and the couple agreed. Since the couple needed to do some shopping, Daryl recommended that they park the car out front where we live and they take the keys. They agreed and left.
Daryl and I met the couple at the 29 Palms DMV on Monday morning bright and early. We waited over an hour to see someone. I was able to talk to the young lady and even invited her to church; she seemed sincerely interested in visiting. We finally got to speak to a DMV worker who looked through the papers and looked up the details on her computer. We learned that the car had not be registered in two years and had several fees and penalties placed on it--not only from the present owner but the previous owner too. The fees and penalties added up to nearly $900! Ouch! We were also informed that if James were to purchase the car, the fees and penalties would become his. Do we look stupid? Don't answer that! My husband gently said to the red-faced young lady, "I'm sorry this is not going to work out right now, but let us know when you get everything sorted out; then we'll talk." We were not very optimistic that the deal would take place now, but were very thankful that God had protected James from getting involved in a bad deal.
The car remained in front of our apartment for the next few days, and we hoped deep down that the young lady was able to work out her finances and get the title so that James could buy the car. On Thursday evening, my husband was pumping gas at the 7/11 down the street from us, and watched as the city transit bus pulls up to the corner and the young lady gets off, walks up the hill, gets into her car and take off. We felt bad for James because seeing the girl pick up the car probably meant that she was not able to pay for the fees and penalties. On Friday morning, my husband was driving in to the church and saw the girl drive her car into the parking lot where she works which is just by the church. On this past Saturday morning, James checked his email (our internet service was down on Thursday and most of Friday). James got an email from the young lady that said that she had just driven by our apartment and the car was missing and if she did not hear from us by Monday, she was going to think the worst and she would file a police report. Immediately we filed our own police report and called her own place of business and got a witness to the fact that she drove the car to work on Friday. Within minutes of our call to her job, she called and totally apologized stating that a "friend" had her email address and that she was going to go home and take care of it immediately. My husband was so sweet and treated her amazingly well. He told her that he and I both felt for her and really liked her, but let her know that we still had to follow through on the police report in order to guard ourselves.
I hope this is the end of the story. James still needs a car, and we are praying that God will provide a good, honest deal to come along for him. We are also praising God for guarding us from what could have been a pretty rough financial setback for James. I love how sometimes when we don't even know what to pray, that God still guides, directs, and protects. I'm glad that God can see the big picture even when I can't.