Vacant Seat, The
Jaksic, Branislav

Branislav Jaksic almost didn’t make it into this world, and when he did arrive, his alcoholic father disowned him and his uncle said he was “ugly.” Born in communist Yugoslavia in 1938, Branislav had a rough start in life. But life didn’t get any easier as he grew older. War, food shortages, an abusive father, and religious persecution were part of Branislav’s life. Despite the turmoil around him, his mother’s unshakable faith and trust in God and His divine plan for Branislav’s life gave him hope.

Upon becoming a Sabbathkeeper, Branislav faced an uncertain future, especially in light of the mandatory service he was required to complete in the Yugoslavian army. What was he to do? He could not join as a noncombatant. He could not request Sabbaths off. Other young Sabbathkeepers who refused to do as the military demanded were imprisoned, beaten, tortured, and starved. He had heard the stories.

The only option was to leave the country. But how? Could he escape across the border into Italy and apply to the Italian authorities for protection? Could he leave his beloved mother and family, not knowing if he would ever see them again?

The Vacant Seat will thrill you as you read about God’s protection and His divine plan for one of His servants—Branislav Jaksic—a man who trusts in the Lord and has devoted his life to serving his Savior.