My flight didn’t leave out of San Pedro Sula Airport until late at night and the missionary was quite unconcerned with our four hour trip saying we had plenty of time and not to worry. It had been a wonderful trip to Honduras, full of the blessings of the Lord. People had been saved, churches encouraged and leaders trained. But it was time to go home.
As we approached his old pickup truck he got into the passenger’s seat. He wanted me to drive because of his poor night vision. As dusk fell I turned on the headlights to find that only one of them worked, the other was pointing straight to the ground. Don’t worry he said, we have plenty of time and you can drive slowly. So off we went, me grinding the gears due to a bad clutch.
Our trip started pleasantly as we bantered about doctrine, Greek pronunciations and the like. Then we came to the first of the many bridges that we had to cross that night. A crowd was gathering and filling the road in this little village. Banners and posters were everywhere. As the missionary read them I was carefully weaving our way through the crowded street. He encouraged me to speed up as he told me that a nationwide teacher’s strike for higher wages had been called for this night. I sped up and became the last vehicle across the bridge as the chanting crowd closed in and shut down the bridge. Don’t worry, the missionary said, but perhaps we could speed up? Not needing much encouragement I hit the gas and drove as fast as my one headlight would allow.
As we approached the next bridge I now saw that the demonstrators were carrying torches. It was an eerie sight. Again I wove through the crowded street forcing people out of the way with gentle nudges. And once again as we made it across the bridge the angry crowd closed in and shut the bridge down this time by setting tires on fire. At the next bridge we saw guns. Not only did we see them, we heard them. Yet once again we made it across just before the angry, shouting, gun-toting, tire-burning crowd closed down the bridge. The missionary was no longer saying don’t worry, now he was encouraging all haste and can’t you drive a little faster? We lost track of how many bridges we crossed but every single bridge we crossed was immediately shut down by the violent protesters just as we passed through. It was a terrifying but miraculous adventure. People must have been praying, I know I was.
As we finally pulled safely into the airport the missionary looked at me and said, see I told you not to worry! Later I found out that the strike turned extremely violent and several lost their lives. A tragic night, but in retrospect for what was accomplished for His Kingdom during my trip, I’d do it all again!