Kingdom Proclaimers Report
“The Name of Jehovah Is a Strong Tower”
WE LIVE in unstable times. Our apparently stable lives can change overnight, and without warning some have found themselves in great peril before they realized it. Danger may come from political upheaval, a violent assailant, a natural disaster, or a serious illness. Whatever the case, where should a Christian turn when his life is in danger?
David, a missionary living at one of the Watch Tower Society’s branches, learned the answer to that question from a frightening experience. An assigned driver, he set out early one morning to pick up some commuter Bethelites (volunteers who live outside the branch). It was still dark. He had picked up Rosalía and was passing a police station when he heard the first shot.
Then things happened quickly. He heard a noise like a large firecracker and realized that air was hissing out of one of the tires. Suddenly he saw a soldier standing in the middle of the road aiming a rifle straight at him. Three things happened almost simultaneously: A volley of shots riddled the side of the Jeep, shattering the windows; David and Rosalía ducked; the soldier fired through the windshield at eye level.
As the Jeep was being peppered with bullets, David braked as best he could while still bent down. Both David and Rosalía thought they were going to die. They prayed aloud to Jehovah, asking him to watch over them. Rosalía later said that in those moments she wondered how her family would react when they heard of her death!
The noise of shots and shattering glass finally stopped, and David glanced over at Rosalía. When he saw a small, round bloodstain on her back, his heart almost stopped. But a piece of flying glass, not a bullet, had embedded itself there. Her knees were bleeding from cuts made by falling glass, but otherwise she seemed all right.
Men in military uniforms with white armbands came up to the Jeep and ordered them to get out with their hands up. One, who seemed to be of higher rank, turned to a soldier and said: “You were told not to shoot at civilians.” The soldier made excuses, claiming that he heard shots and thought they came from the Jeep.
When David identified Rosalía and himself as Jehovah’s Witnesses, the reaction was favorable. He explained what he had been doing, but the soldiers still wanted to detain them. Apparently, in the early hours of the morning, a military faction had staged a coup d’état, and these soldiers had been in the process of taking over the police station as David and Rosalía passed in the Jeep.
Rosalía was badly shaken but bravely kept calm as David pleaded for them to be released. Eventually they were allowed to leave—without the Jeep. They had to walk to a nearby avenue and catch a bus to the branch, where the infirmary attended to Rosalía.
The Power of Prayer
David learned something from the experience—never underestimate the power of earnest prayer, and never forget that courageously identifying oneself as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses is often a protection. It may literally be true that “the name of Jehovah is a strong tower. Into it the righteous runs and is given protection.”—Proverbs 15:29; 18:10; Philippians 4:6.
[Picture Credit Line on page 19]
Fotografía de Publicaciones Capriles, Caracas, Venezuela