by Paul Shingledecker
Insecurities reigned in downtown Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Everybody knew it was dangerous to be out in the streets after sundown. However, for Pastor Chavannes Jeune, it couldn't be helped. You see, Pastor Chavannes is one of the leading evangelists in the country, and he was preaching a revival. The service was over about 8:30 p.m., but he still needed to get across town to where he was staying with his in-laws.
He was alone as he started out in his double-cab Toyota. Suddenly he saw a little red Datsun in his rearview mirror. The guy must be nuts to drive that close! And now he was laying on the horn as though he wanted Pastor Chavannes to stop!
Finally the Datsun swerved and passed him. Then the crazy guy slammed on his brakes right in front of him blocking the road. What could he do but stop!
A big, burly guy dressed in shorts and a T-shirt jumped from the car. He came swaggering back with a big pistol clutched in his hand. Fortunately, the windows were rolled up. But he came to the driver's side and began hammering on the glass with the butt of the pistol! He must want him to roll it down. No way!
Now he was getting madder. Suddenly he turned the gun and started firing. Pastor Chavannes ducked down in the seat. He heard shots, one after another. There was the sound of glass breaking everywhere. Then it stopped and he looked up. There was the face again, now livid with rage. He could even see a gold cap on one of the assailant's front teeth! He was furious, and as though in slow motion, Pastor saw him turn and start back to his car for another weapon.
Pastor Chavannes saw his chance. He jammed the pickup into reverse, jumped the curb, and started around. But there was a big bus in the way. Plus he couldn't see because he had to keep his head down in case the guy had had time to get another gun. He did notice he almost ran the guy down as he went by.
The next thing he knew he was in the clear and driving down the street! He suddenly came to himself and had the distinct impression he needed to take over and start driving this vehicle! He pulled onto a side street and began to dodge from street to street, always looking back for the little red Datsun without a license plate.Finally a few minutes later he arrived at his father-in-law's house.
Upstairs he was afraid to tell Marie Lucie what had happened. She was always worrying about him anyway. This would scare her to death. But he did tell his father-in-law. They decided to go down and see just how badly the vehicle had been damaged. When they got there, they couldn't find a scratch! Not a window was broken! There weren't even any bullet holes! It couldn't be! But there it was before their eyes.
The next day in broad daylight, Pastor Chavannes went back down that same street. Sure enough, there was the bus that had blocked his way. It hadn't been a dream after all. As he drove by, he looked more closely. Yes, there were bullet holes in the bus!
Two weeks later, there was a piece in the news about the insecurities in the country. They talked about people getting shot at night and about a certain pickup with the telephone company insignia on it and a a little red Datsun without a license plate! Both vehicles had been seen involved in some of the crimes. In one case, a man had been shot thirteen times in the chest at close range!
But for Pastor Chavannes Jeune, for five special minutes, the left driver's side window had been bullet proof! God had spared the life of one of His most choice servants in Haiti.
Details have been checked with Pastor Jeune who vows for their authenticity. He has also authorized the publication of this account. Our prayer is that as others read it they will glorify God who is at work even today protecting His church and His people.
Paul Shingledecker was born in Kentucky and grew up in Burundi,
the son of long-time WGM missionaries Harold and Hettie Shingledecker.
He and his wife, Patsy, have served with WGM in Burundi and ar now serving in Haiti.
Paul is involved in radio ministry.
Call to Prayer reprinted with permission of World Gospel Mission