Once while David was out with Gus, travelling in a taxi into downtown Monrovia. David had the camera out and was taking photos of the scenery and interesting-looking people. He heard someone yell out at him and then ran toward the taxi. David was afraid they were police, but the man just entered the front seat of the taxi. However, when David and Gus got out, the man did too, and said that he was a policeman. The policeman just wanted money, and started getting pushy, threatening them with taking them to the station. This was fine with David, so all three went to an office of the Department of Defense. As he went, David had in his mind that he wouldn’t be upset to lose the camera and all his money, because David was at peace, resting the knowledge that the eternal life in him couldn’t be taken away. On the way to the office, Gus told David to keep his mouth shut and let Gus get them out of the situation.

When they arrived, the police made Gus be quiet and only wanted to speak to David. The officers seriously thought David was a spy and could not believe that David hadn’t undergone at least two years of compulsory military training. David made friends with them in his usual charming manner, telling them all about Australia “the land of the kangaroos”. Before they left, the officers wanted David to pose with them in a photo taken with David’s camera. They also agreed to escort David while he took some more pictures of downtown Monrovia. They even ended up taking a few for him! It had previously been agreed that the officers would examine the negatives of the photos to make sure David hadn’t taken pictures of government secret establishments. In Monrovia, it’s possible to get the negatives developed without photos being made, so David agreed to do this. The officers kindly offered to just accept money instead of really looking at the proofs, but it turned out to be cheaper to have the negatives developed. David and us left the film, took the receipt and left. When they got back to the photographic studio, the officers had already procured the negatives and were looking at them. Of course there was nothing for them to complain about, so it was all over.

We checked out of hospital on Saturday morning, weak, but better. As we returned to our rooms at ACFI, we heard that a pick-up taking supplies was headed north to Ganta, which is almost on the Guinea border. This was originally our plan to get across the border, but it hadn’t seemed as easy before. Now the question was, could I travel? Of course! I just wanted to get back to RCI as soon as possible. While the pick-up was loaded with supplies, unloaded, then reloaded with different things to take to the orphanage in Ganta, we waited hours. Finally, at about 4pm we set out, with still numerous stops at marketplaces and friends’ houses. David and I were just glad to be on our way out of the country. Liberia isn’t awful, but it’s a strain, and we were ready for a break. Previously to beginning the trip, we had prayed that the way would be opened up and the pick-up would be a shining light of God’s love, opening a path for us to travel upon. When we reached Ganta, the Liberians said it had been the easiest trip to Ganta they had ever been on, espe-cially with two white people aboard. At 9pm we reached the joyful welcome of the orphanage in Ganta, where they sang to welcome us and thank God for the safe journey. Obvi-ously these supply trips were long awaited and anticipated. We brought bags of rice; cartons of canned chicken and drinks, plus miscellaneous supplies to be given to widows. David and I were given the only bed in the mud-brick struc-ture, and we slept well until the children were awakened for devotions at 6am.

One of David Ward’s last minute ideas was that David and I could take out a Liberian boy who had an eye tumor. If the boy was brought to Abidjan, he could have the necessary surgery; David’s home church would cover the expenses. At Ganta we met Nyanquoi, known as “Nya.” Nya’s account of his eye injury is “the fire touched my eye.” The resulting infection that received no medical treatment left a huge amount of scar tissue on the eyeball. Nya’s eyelid could not close completely over his eye, and it looked almost as if he had two eyeballs. The eye was completely blind, and the doctors feared the infection could spread to the other eye.

The orphanage’s director insisted on accompanying us to the border to make sure everything was smooth, but it really wasn’t necessary. We got a station wagon from Ganta to Karnplay. David and I sat up front with the driver and four adult men squished together in the back seat. Nya sat on a lap. We picked up and deposited various people along the way and at one stage we had two men in the hatch-back boot with the luggage and two men sitting on the roof of the car. It was like this that we careened down the dirt road at 80kms per hour. Our driver was very good, and only hit one pot-hole really badly.

David and I had anticipated buying exit visas at the border, and were told to be prepared to pay huge amounts for them. However, at one roadblock, the soldier simply stamped our passports with the exit visas, without demanding any money! Isn’t God good? We know of someone who paid US$75 for his exit visa at the airport! At Karnplay, a change of taxis gave us another ride directly to the Nuon river. A masked dancer on stilts performed for a large crowd of villagers just outside the immigration department’s office. “Come see the devil!” one man urged us. No thanks. Holding Nya’s hand, we maneuvered through the crowd to get into the office to have our passports stamped. The officials never even no-ticed Nya. They probably just thought he was a local boy hanging onto us for a coin or two. We were never ques-tioned about taking him from Liberia.

At the RCI side, the soldiers were very solicitous to us, and it was so good to speak French again. The customs official asked us some probing questions about what we believed, and I had the opportunity to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with him and the crowd standing around us. It turned out that he himself was a believer and wanted to see if we were true believers as well. We had to wait several hours for our bush taxi into Danané, and it was a veritable bomb, with exhaust pouring out from under the driver’s seat to choke the front row passengers. Again at the police stop outside Danané, out passports were stamped without comment and no one questioned Nya’s presence with us. Everyone on the bush taxi knew what we were doing, and most only ex-pressed gratitude for us giving Nya the chance to get medi-cal treatment.

At Danané our choice was either to continue to Man and find accommodation for the night or continue to Abidjan. I opted to continue, though David was concerned about me pushing it too far. We sat in a marquis until the bus left at 8pm, and arrived in Abidjan at 7am after a very long night. Nya was able to sleep most of the way, with his head on my lap, so at least one of us was rested. In Abidjan, after the initial surprise of arriving with a nine-year-old boy, my par-ents quickly adjusted to the idea. My dad had an eye ap-pointment at the hospital on Tuesday morning and was able to persuade the doctor to see Nya at the same time. The Liberian doctor rushed Nya through as an emergency case and planned surgery for Thursday morning.

David spent the night with Nya in hospital prior to the op-eration, and I had the next night. Nya’s eyeball was com-pletely removed and the socket cleaned. He actually had parasites in the tissue, so it was removed just in time before they could do more damage. After the operation, Nya was in a lot of pain. Moreover, since he only speaks a little Eng-lish, he couldn’t communicate well. However, a kind Libe-rian woman who speaks the same tribal language as he vis-ited him and spoke to him in Mano.

On Friday morning we brought him home again, where he started eating his weight again and riding the tricycle around the patio. The doctor has ordered a prosthetic eye, which may be fitted in the next ten days. We would appreciate your prayers for Nya and his future. It’s planned to send him back to the orphanage when he’s recovered, but David and I would like you to join us in praying that Nya would find a home with parents to look after him.

At the moment, David and I are planning to leave RCI, travel through Burkina Faso and Niger before flying out of Nigeria on March 16th. However, our plans have been known to change before! We praise God for his never-ending mercies and unfailing goodness to us in all our trav-els. We see miracles every day. Thank God with us.