In the early times of our marriage, we were penniless and Dietrich used a bike to go to his classes at the university. There was a lot of traffic in busy Toronto and I was afraid for his life, and I told him I do not like his bike.
In Austria they bike everywhere. Like the French needs their baguette every morning, the Austrian needs their bike. It seemed to me though that Vienna was more like a big slow village and Toronto was a modern, fast, too busy city. My husband refused to let his bike go, because it was so convenient and close to his heart, his country’s habit.
There was no way he would listen to me. So, I prayed his bike away.
With luck and prayers his beloved bike was stolen. I felt such relief, thanking God while Dietrich was kind of upset having to take the bus from this time on.
When communication does not work, you can always pray for your godly wish to come true!
My husband was a die-hard missionary who always liked to sleep on the hard floor. He was used to the tough and rough life of missionary going around America, sleeping in vans, and witnessing or fundraising in the burning hot sun of Arizona or New York’s cold winter.
After our marriage, when I moved in with him and he was a student at the University of Toronto studying theology, he had just a very small bachelor room rented from a group of students. There was only one single bed in there. So, in the middle of the night, when it was becoming too crowded in the narrow bed, he would tumble down and sleep on the floor.
Because of his habits, he never complained. He was always humble and satisfied. He was always happy living an ascetic life, and suddenly he had a demanding wife not crazy about this lifestyle. Fortunately, shortly after, when a child was on its way, we could move to the married student apartment building which was a step up.
I never forgot how humble my husband was, and how humility can take you anywhere you want to go or to be. Even after he received his Ph.D., he never ever took on the air of someone who was achieving something, or proud of anything that could make him superior in any way. Living tough and rough gave him a steel will, and a life of devotion gave him compassion and true love for others. These were the foundation for a good and happy marriage.
After graduating from the University of Toronto, we moved to Barrytown, New York where Dietrich started teaching at the Unification Theological Seminary. There were no buses to go anywhere, and we had two children by then. It was time to think about getting a cheap car.
We looked at advertisements in the newspaper. One car was advertised for 2000 dollars in Syracuse. We were still penniless, and thought we could borrow money. But God’s angels were already working with us and for us.
When we arrived at the wonderful couple’s house in Syracuse, Dietrich became instant friends with them, sharing his life of faith with them over coffee. The couple was so moved that the car became half price. We could buy it for 1000 dollars.
God always works in mysterious ways, loving us and caring for us in our day-to-day life.
Your friend, Elisabeth Seidel