Countering drug violence in Mexico
A Christian Science perspective.
Violence has recently let loose in the state of Veracruz, Mexico. Multiple murders have taken place, allegedly by organized crime. I live in a different region of Mexico, but my whole country is being shaken by waves of violence. Globalization, marginalization, migration, inequalities, unemployment aggravate the situation.
The drug cartels have diversified their activities into human trafficking, extortion, kidnapping, intimidation, and the sale of protection. This is affecting every country, and we should gather our efforts to recover peace.
On the other hand, the goodwill of individuals is reflected in organized civil activities like the march for peace and in multidenominational prayer crusades. Some churches have reported an increase in attendance. People are looking for refuge and comfort. This is a sign that more people are trying to get closer to God. Mary Baker Eddy, who discovered Christian Science, wrote, “My heavenly Father will never leave me comfortless, in the amplitude of His love; coming nearer in my need, more tenderly to save and bless” (“Miscellaneous Writings 1883-1896,” p. 249).
We need divine help. And the help from our Creator is always present to give us strength, so His wisdom can be seen reflected in those who are in charge of law and order.
How can we pray? The Bible asks us to start with love: “I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you” (Matt. 5:44). It also says, “The God of my rock; in him will I trust: he is my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my high tower, and my refuge, my saviour; thou savest me from violence” (II Sam. 22:3).
These ideas from the Bible point toward our heavenly home, where we can feel protected and safe. We can find this home as we allow love and forgiveness to reign in our hearts. The Bible also promises, “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus” (Rom. 8:1), which indicates that we have all been forgiven by our Father, God, and therefore, it is within us to forgive.
I have been able to prove the power of prayer. About three years ago, when violence had just started to ravage northern Mexico, my son and his family were living in Reynosa, in the state of Tamaulipas. A friend called to tell me that in that area there had been a shooting that had lasted several hours. The shooting had started in the street behind where my son was living and spread for several blocks. My daughter-in-law was home and her young son was at a day-care center nearby. There was no way to communicate with them. I started to pray as I’ve learned in Christian Science, knowing that God was caring for and protecting them, and therefore they were out of danger. This came to mind: “[H]e shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways” (Ps. 91:11).
A little later I could reach my daughter-in-law and encourage her, so she was able to go out and get her son. The day-care center staff had kept the children safe under the stairs in the building. Nobody at the center was harmed.
The word of God is powerful. God’s omnipotence and omnipresence always operate in favor of all humanity.
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