By: Ely Lagajino

Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand. – Proverbs 19:21 (ESV)

​We heard the news about the declaration of Martial Law. An uncle who was a student activist in the graduate school told me that warrantless arrest had become legal. He told me that I should get a haircut to avoid being jailed. I dropped as a third-year high school student and stayed with my relatives in the mountains by helping in the farm.

One day another uncle visited me with news that he was being recruited as a salesman. He asked me to join them. By Saturday, four of us went to Legaspi for an interview, that’s what we thought.  But instead, we attended Sabbath services in Legaspi SDA church and were handed a long paper with fill-in the blanks baptismal questionnaire. One of my uncles was disqualified because of the smell of cigarettes. He went home disappointed. 

In the afternoon, three of us were baptized as a requirement before working as a publishing salesman. By Monday, we attended orientation and were formally accepted as regular Literature Evangelists (LE). Later, we took the job seriously as full-fledged LEs.

My disqualified uncle became a Special Police who was a great help to me while working as LE during the Martial Law period.

After two years in canvassing, I had the privilege of studying at the PUC-Naga View campus as a third-year high school student until junior college. I finished my college degree at PUC main campus in Silang, Cavite, as a working student, with a “Magna,” no, not magna cum laude but “Magna-nine years” in college. Some of my classmates became my teachers. I worked as an LE in the five missions of the former NPUM for almost nine years. 

Praise God for pulling me out of the mountains, for the LE ministry, and His sustaining grace. Now, all I’m looking forward to is to be in heaven and reunite with those who have accepted Jesus Christ because of the books they bought from me during those Martial Law years.

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