Blessed Assurance in the Form of a Vespa Ride

Red VespaAbout a week ago I was walking towards downtown Catania and in the mist of praying for friends, family and those who live and work in the places I was passing, a couple of Vespas went whizzing by. For whatever reason, seeing these particular Vespas led me to think how much I would love to take a ride on one before leaving Italy about ten days later. If you have read many of my other “ripe banana stories” you’ll understand why, even though I can’t fully explain how and why it works, I am firmly convinced of the following: prayer changes things, God loves it when we pray specifically and nothing is too trivial to speak with Him about. Knowing these things to be true about prayer, I asked the Lord for Him to give me an opportunity to go for a ride on a Vespa before I leave.

A few nights later I met up with Alba (the wonderful friend I am staying with), and some of her friends at our local gelateria, C & G (it happens to be one of the best in Catania!). After an hour or so, the group decided to go together to grab a bite to eat. Since Alba and I had walked from our apartment, there was one car and one Vespa between the six of us. To avoid a tight squeeze in the small car, someone needed to ride with Stefano on his Vespa and that someone was me! After dinner, Stefano needed to get gas and having heard me say how much I love riding Vespas, he graciously took a scenic route back to the gelateria to drop me off as well as the picture below (grazie tante Stefano!).

I am incredibly overwhelmed by the love of my God and King to so graciously and faithfully attend to the trivial petitions of a common sinner like me! Yet He has adopted me, removed my guilt and shame and exchanged them with the royal robes of Christ’s righteousness! This is truly a beautiful mystery beyond comprehension.

“He does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities. For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is His love for those who fear Him; as far as the East is from the West, so far has He removed our transgressions from us. As a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear Him; for He knows how we are formed, He remembers that we are dust.”

~Psalm 103: 10-14

Even in the mist of being tempted to think He has forgotten me, my beloved Jesus woo’s me afresh with His blessed assurance that I am His. Like Hagar, I am comforted by the intimate reminder that He see me (Genesis 16:13, Psalm 139). Call upon Him in faith and see if He will not prove Himself faithful still:

“And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to Him must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him.”  ~Hebrews:11:6

Vespa ride!

4 thoughts on “Blessed Assurance in the Form of a Vespa Ride

  1. Amen, Hill…that’s awesome! Praise God! Why are you leaving Italia? Blessings to you, Phil

    Sent from my LG phone


    • Phil, I don’t have a long-term visa to stay past 90 days. I will need to leave the Schengen zone for 3 months before I can reenter. I am hoping to be here in Sicily for another three months this Fall but sooner or later I’ll need to return home to work on getting a visa…


  2. So awesome, Hillary! Thrilled for you to have this desire of your heart fulfilled. God’s love for us is so extravagant! I’m thrilled also that you are sharing your blessings with others in the form of these Ripe Banana stories, multiplying the joy & the awareness of how great our God is. “Ride” on! = )


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