Liberty. Freedom. Independence. Built on the backs of freed slaves, Liberia was founded on these principles in the hope of establishing a nation in which man was not owned. Though Liberia is the oldest republic in Africa, a national identity has only started to take shape after surviving two civil wars in the past thirty years. Blanketed with rain forests and valuable hardwood trees, Liberia is richly blessed in natural resources and temperate weather, which foster agriculture and a growing trade market.
However, the emotional and psychological scars of past conflicts still remain. Over half of the nation is under the age of fifteen, and over 200,000 people died in the wars, including 50,000 children. 15,000 surviving child soldiers remain haunted and robbed of their innocence. Sex trafficking is widespread. Young girls are kidnapped, frequently by adults they know, and spend their youth as slaves and adulthood as prostitutes and beggars in their own communities. An estimated 68% of the population live below the poverty level, only 60% can read, and a mere quarter of the people have access to safe drinking water. The violence of years past remains evident on damaged buildings and roads, and political corruption is still leaving the people questioning their trust in the authorities placed above them.
Yet God is still there. Christians are in the process of translating the Bible into twelve of the languages spoken in Liberia, and the Word was just recently translated into Bassa, the second most spoken dialect. Though only 20 percent of the population attend church regularly, that number is growing. Christians are still praising God in the broken churches and desolate chapels. Liberia is in need of prayer, compassion, and strong Christ-led leaders. This nation can still find liberty, freedom, and independence from their sin and worldly trials. It’s people can find the healing for their scars that only the Master Physician provides.