Not for a moment since I left my home country years ago have I taken for granted my right to freedom. At times I still have to pinch myself to believe that I really am living in a free country like Britain. It is bliss to know I have every right to freedom to do what I want to do, say what I want to say, and vote for whom I want to vote. As a woman and a citizen here, I have equal rights and privileges with every other citizen. I have the right to practice my religious beliefs with freedom – a freedom I guard most sacredly with prayers of gratitude each day.
This is not the case for everyone. People who live under repressive regimes are not able to exercise freedom of speech or the right to practice their religious beliefs. Instead, their government establishes the standard they have to live by.
The quest for freedom and better lives can lead to desperate steps. It was such a tragedy to watch a boat full of refugees break up in a storm just off Christmas Island in Australia last week. Desperate people were taking desperate measures to secure better lives for themselves and their families in free worlds.
With compassion for those involved in this tragedy, I realize my own life has shown me that prayer is a means to help with the redemption of governments and freedom for people. The Christ, the divine message of God to humanity, honors and glorifies God’s government of infinite Love, where everyone’s right to be self-governed is sacred.
In this way, divine Love has revealed the true and universal model for a perfect government. True freedom comes from the infinite divine Mind, as each of us is governed by this Mind for the blessing of all. Here, equal rights and privileges are afforded and enjoyed by all its citizens.
Christ Jesus’ ministry shows the power of this government to transform lives, to give hope and peace to those in trouble. But he was always clear about where the real power lay. He said to his Father, “I have glorified thee on the earth” (John 17:4). God was the motivating force behind everything Jesus did. His great desire was that in everything he did, God should get all the credit and all the praise and glory.
Our prayers for people’s right to freedom are one way we can give glory to God and forward the time when all people will be of goodwill toward one another, and when peace on earth will be established. Jesus’ teachings show that God’s laws are perfect and wholly good, and lead inevitably to justice. This is the promise of Christ, the universal Truth, whose light dispels darkness and oppression and brings freedom to all.
Since we are each the loved creation of God, our power or intelligence come from God, and we respond to the authority of good, never to evil. In God’s kingdom oppressive regimes have no hold over His sons and daughters. Affirmation of this spiritual fact, in prayer, helps bring freedom to all. From divine Love’s government flows only the continuity of a perfect rule, which, when understood, has the power to stop wars, forgive debts, and establish justice and righteousness on earth.
As we think globally, the actions we take locally and individually have an impact on the world. And our human actions are best supported as we become prayer activists. Our individual and collective prayers to embrace the troubled zones in the world make a difference. The declaration and insistence that the kingdom of God is established on earth, for all people, will transform our own thoughts and touch others as well.
When people pray together, peaceful revolutions are possible. The Berlin Wall came down through peaceful means. Mary Baker Eddy, who discovered Christian Science, wrote this declaration of freedom as the “standard of liberty”: “Citizens of the world, accept the ‘glorious liberty of the children of God,’ and be free! This is your divine right” (“Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures,” p. 227). May this declaration of Truth be the bell that rings, echoing across the globe this Christmastime, bringing peace on earth and goodwill to all.