A lot has been said and written about Bolivia lately, with the controversial results of the elections they had in October 2020. After 14 years of socialist rule, Evo Morales was ousted last year, making it seem like the country would return to a more right-wing government. All that changed when the current president, Luis Arce, won the election with more than 50% of the vote. When asked if he planned to bring back Evo, Arce said that he was not Evo and that the former president would have no role in his government. However, recent events have alarmed many people. By Arce’s inauguration, former president Evo Morales was back in the country and participating in the festivities.
Having been missionaries in Bolivia for 14 years, we have seen the gradual shift all over Latin America to this type of socialistic government and its dangers. The irony of this is that when you observe other socialist countries, like Venezuela and Cuba, the results have never been what the people truly wanted. In Venezuela today, they are facing a humanitarian crisis due to the lack of basic necessities. In Cuba, where socialism had much of its start, the average wage for a doctor is only twenty dollars a month. Even more concerning for us is the effect socialism has on the work that God has called us to do. Socialist governments are almost always anti-church and do much to control religion. Though we have not faced any direct opposition in Bolivia, the government has consistently passed laws to control churches and make things more difficult for foreigners.
In all this, we continue to trust the Lord and His will for both Bolivia and Latin America. Our prayer has been that the Lord would use these political changes to further the gospel and strengthen churches and Christians in Bolivia. We know that even though we must prepare for battle, safety and victory is of the Lord (Prov 21:31). However, it does give us a sense of urgency, knowing that our time in Bolivia could be limited and that we must work while we can. Please pray for us. And please pray that the Lord will raise more laborers to go to Bolivia and reap the harvest before it is too late.