Bullets at the Border Crossing

Bullets at the Border Crossing

By Duane McKey

It was a hot and dusty road—more than 1,200 kilometers—from Johannesburg to Livingstone. There was a war raging between Botswana, Zambia and Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe), but our trip back to Zambia from South Africa had so far been uneventful.

Arriving at the Zambezi River above Victoria Falls—still in Botswana and preparing to cross the border into Zambia—we were surprised to find no one at the border crossing. We walked around looking for someone, and came upon some men from the Botswana military hiding in foxholes along the road.

“Where are the border guards?” I asked them. “We have to cross over to Zambia on the ferry.”

“Get out of here!” they shouted, and one of the soldiers held up a bazooka and pointed it at us. He said, “We’re hiding from the terrorists and you’re giving away our position. If you don’t leave, we’ll shoot you!”

Needless to say, Kathy and I, along with our two children Bracken and Denae, ran back to our Volkswagen and got out of there, praying as we went!

We drove quickly down to the riverbank and found the ferryman hiding in the shrubbery along the river’s edge. I shouted to him, “Let’s get out of here! We don’t want to be on this side of the river when shots are fired!”

He came out of his hiding place and I carefully drove our van onto the ferry. Then slowly, he floated us across the massive Zambezi River.

We drove off the ferry and up to the immigration and customs office. When I told the border guards what had happened, and that gunfire was imminent, they laughed and said, “You probably just saw some duck hunters on the river. There’s nothing to worry about.”

Then it happened. Shots rang out nearby, and those very guards who a minute before had been laughing at us, suddenly ran into the immigration office and dove over the counter, all the while shouting at us, “Get out of here before you get shot!”

We didn’t wait to be told twice. Jumping into our van, we quickly drove away and didn’t stop until we arrived in Livingstone an hour later. Only then were we able to safely fill out the immigration and customs documents, all the while praising God for His guardian angels.

I love recalling these faith-building experiences in my life. They remind me that “He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge . . . A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you” (Psalm 91:4, 7).

Duane McKey is president of Adventist World Radio.

World Church Prayer Requests

December 17-23, 2021

  • Pray for the growing ministry of Adventist World Radio, and for God’s continued protection for the AWR leadership and staff around the world.
  • Pray for the 24-hour a day prayer initiative called “The Boiler Room” that is taking place this month. Many people are being blessed. Pray that even more will join. To learn more visit: www.247unitedprayer.org
  • Please pray for the first quarter Day of Prayer and Fasting on January 1, 2022. The emphasis for this coming year is: “Praying the Three Angels’ Messages.” To learn more, visit: www.revivalandreformation.org
  • Pray for the Awan people in Pakistan. There is no known presence of believers among the 5,229,000 people in this group. Pray that the Holy Spirit works among these people and that their hearts are stirred to know Jesus.

To download this week's testimony and prayer requests, click here!

Join the Discussion

United in prayer

A global prayer movement including 777 and 10 Days of Prayer, in which hundreds of thousands of people have participated.