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Prayer for Kosovo

A Christian Science perspective on daily life.

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Kosovo's declaration of independence last month brings with it both dangers and opportunities. The reaction of some world leaders and the violent demonstrations in Serbia and Mitrovica show that the road ahead is challenging.

The record of strife and ethnic cleansing in this part of the world shows the enormous need of preventing passions from getting out of control. Many are striving to counter the forces trying to inflame the situation further. The Monitor quoted a longtime UN official who said, "What we need now is a gigantic leap out of the Balkans and into Europe, mentally and culturally. Both Serbs and Albanians need to stop thinking about the past, revenge, history, and focus on the future" ("Kosovo looks to cautious next steps," Feb. 16).

Many have lost their families and homes; entire villages have been wiped out. How can one start anew?

The most effective and healing method of getting beyond past hurts and the desire for revenge is prayer that's based on a conviction that God actually is governing the nations and the world. Such prayer relies on Him as the omnipotent source of all wisdom, so its guidance is workable and intelligent. But it is also transforming, as this promise of God's care makes clear: "Behold, I make all things new" (Rev. 21:5).

The renewing power revealed by prayer is expressed on the human scene as Christ, God's message of love to each of us. Christ transforms seemingly untransformable situations because it expresses God's equal measure of love for all His children. It makes all things new; never favors one over the other or makes one "newer" than the other. The effect is that all hearts change, although some may change at a different rate from others.

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