Family Night Out with a Human Trafficking Gang and a State Trooper

     Life is always exciting when you hang out with the Clancy's.  My parents learned that lesson the hard way Friday night.

     We love dollar shows.It usually costs our family $52 to see a movie.  If we get crazy and add popcorn and drinks, it can run us a much a $75.  So, you can imagine my excitement when I  recently discovered a dollar theater outside of Austin.  This past Friday seemed like a great night to try it out, so we invited my parents to come along.
     Since we were going to save so much money on the movie, we decided to go out to eat a local Mexican restaurant before the show.  The food was great.  We took our time, savoring each nacho and every last drop of free ice cream. 
     When we finished, my parents and daughters headed for my Dad's truck and the rest of us piled into our Odyssey.  As we backed out, we noticed my parents standing awkwardly in the parking lot and the girls  looking around as if they had forgotten where they parked. We pulled the van over next to them and realized the problem wasn't that the parking spot had been forgotten,  it was that the truck was just flat gone.

     I have never had a car stolen. To me, that is something happens to people on T.V., not to a random, country family like ours. It felt strange.  Why us?  Why our truck?  It wasn't even new or fancy.  Just a quality, useful truck for my cowboy Dad. The only distinguishing feature on it was a American Paint Horse Association sticker on the back window.  So weird.
     Of course, we immediately called the police.  My kids were super excited to hang out with a state trooper. Who needs a movie when real life is just as interesting? There wasn't much the trooper could do for us at the time, except file a report. So, we squeezed in the the van and went on our way, feeling a little creeped out.
     Amazingly, the next morning, my dad got a phone call saying his truck had been found.  I personally thought we would never see it again.  Apparently, a seasoned, professional human trafficking gang had stolen the truck, driven it all the way to Mexico, brought immigrants over the border, then abandoned the truck near Laredo, TX., after a high speed chase.   We were told that the gang was probably sitting there waiting for us (or someone just like us) when we pulled up.  Chances are, we saw them and didn't even know it.
     The truck itself is trashed.  The border patrol said the back seat had been ripped out (a typical thing that happens) and the truck had been driven hard and far across open country.  The front is wrecked and scratched from barbed wire and brush.  The suspension and anything else under the truck is shot. The insurance will more than likely total it out.
     Some family night together!  Our savings at the dollar show turned into a $20,000 deficit. I have to confess, I don't have a profound spiritual thought for this story. I just wanted to share it with you. I don't know why this happened to us, especially with everything else that is going on in our lives right now. There was a time when I would have spent a lot of brain power trying to make this event make sense, but in this case, I think we were just in the wrong place at the wrong time. We wern't special, it could have happend to anyone.
    There is one thing I do know, God can and will use all things for good for those that love Him. It will be interesting to see how this all plays out.
I will keep you posted!



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