Shortly after moving into our new apartment in August of 1980, we got a further illustration of the determination in our older boy’s character. He was now six years old, so we often sent him to buy things at the little store on our street.
Late one afternoon we sent him out to buy bread for supper. When he didn’t come back in a reasonable length of time, I went to look for him.
The storekeeper said that he had come, but since there was no bread, he had left. I went outside and looked up and down the street, but no boy. I had no idea now of where to look for him. Maybe he had gone to look for bread elsewhere, but my further search at other stores was fruitless.
By the time I got home, Josh had been gone an hour and it was getting dark. We prayed and talked about what to do.
Shortly after the doorbell rang. When I opened it, there was the daughter of the janitor of our first apartment, and she had our missing boy by the hand!
He had gone down the hill from one corner grocery to the next, but all were out of bread. By the time the girl found him, he was about a mile from home and had crossed a very busy street at least once.
He had been given an assignment and he was going to follow through no matter what! We were thankful for God’s protection and for providing someone he knew to bring him home—a very clear God sighting!
Chapter 52 Coups and Cops
In early September we were looking for a larger bed for Nat and heard of one for sale out at the Middle Eastern Technical University campus, so we planned to go out there early in the morning to pick it up.
As we were getting ready at 6 am, there was a knock on the door. Barbara answered it, and came back looking very pleased.
“What is it?” I asked,
“There was a military coup last night,” she said. “The landlord’s son said we can’t leave the house until further notice. I’m going back to bed!” She was the happiest prisoner I’d ever seen.
At three in the afternoon, we got word that we were allowed to go out and buy bread if we wanted to, so the boys and I went. We were startled to see a tank at the end of our street was with its 50-caliber machine gun loaded and pointed our way!
From the corner we looked down the hill and at the entrance to every side street there were soldiers in full battle dress with loaded rifles standing guard.
We learned that during the night 10,000 people had been arrested, including all the leading political figures. Martial law had been declared, the parliament dissolved and all political parties closed.
In that one night this country went from being perhaps the most dangerous country in the world to the safest, with all known criminals taken in, along with a lot of innocent people. . For those arrested it was a brutal time of transition.
For those of us left at home, the coup certainly made things better for daily living: no more bombs, no more machine gun fights, no more dogs barking in the night, and a gradual end to shortages in the stores. How it would affect our work of sharing the gospel remained to be seen.
Picture: The boys in their Roman soldier outfits