by Sheri Schofield
Snow and ice covered Montana. It was 40 degrees below zero when my plane took off and headed for Texas two years ago this March. From there, our mission team traveled by van into the Sierra Madres of Mexico. Only a few months earlier, the cartel had killed a large number of American women and children on the other side of the mountains from our destination. It was not a safe time to be traveling in that region.
Toward the end of that week, the pastors and I led seminars for the Mexican pastors and their wives in Pena Blanca, a small town. While I taught the wives a class on multisensory teaching, our pastors conducted educational classes for the Mexican pastors.
That Friday, as I was teaching, I heard a big boom followed by what sounded like fireworks. A few blocks away, La Lenia drug cartel had blown up a state trooper car containing three troopers. The “fireworks” were machine guns. The battle raged back and forth between other troopers and La Linea cartel throughout the day, sometimes coming as close as a block away from us.
When the noise became too loud, I would pause until it passed. There were adobe walls between the battle and us, but it was still dangerous. However, I did not feel afraid. I had a strong sense the Lord was with us.
Saturday night, our pastor asked for volunteers to go with him on Sunday to a church located on the other side of La Linea’s territory, where Sinaloa cartel operated. I knew we would be stopped by the cartel on one or both sides of the line. Only two young men reluctantly volunteered. Neither of them knew Spanish, nor did my pastor. I did not volunteer that night, though I did speak some Spanish. I wanted to pray about it first and find out what God wanted. Sure enough, God said, “Go with them.”
I did. Our trip to the next town was uneventful. But on our way back, we were stopped by about fifteen machine-gun toting cartel members. They wanted to know who we were and where we were going.
Pastor simply said, “No Espanol. Iglesia?” (“No Spanish. Church?”) I remained silent. If needed, I was available, but I would wait to be asked. The cartel checked the VIN on our car then let us go.
At no time was I even a tiny bit afraid. Why?
First, I have been face-to-face with death a few times, and I found that Jesus was there. Live or die, to be with Jesus is to be at peace.
Second, I knew that God had sent me on this mission trip to help those Mexican church leaders. Being in the center of His will is always the best place to be.
David knew this same peace. He wrote about it in Psalm 23:4. “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me” (KJV).
The times in which we are living are filled with anxiety and fear as we battle a pandemic and job losses. As I write, a record-breaking snowstorm has hit the United States, creating more stress. Isolation. Loneliness. Fear. Financial insecurity. These are the enemies we face—Satan’s cartel.
How do we cope? We don’t look at the enemy—We look at Jesus. He is with us. We can trust Him completely.
Whatever else God is doing, He is certainly getting our nation’s attention. Maybe He will send revival! Wouldn’t that be a great outcome?
Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.” Psalm 91:1 NIV
This article is brought to you by the Advanced Writers and Speakers Association (AWSA).
About the author: Sheri Schofield is an award-winning children’s author-illustrator. She was named Arise Daily Writer of the Year in 2020, and Writer of the Year in 2018 at the Colorado Christian Writers’ Conference for her work in effectively sharing the gospel of Jesus. Sheri also writes devotions for children at her website: www.sherischofield.com in “Campfire”, and is in the process of developing a children’s program on her YouTube site. Questions welcomed!
Read Sheri and her husband’s amazing story in One Step Ahead of the Devil: A Powerful Love Story. Thrust into national politics because of her husband’s work, Lissa McCloud struggles to save the life of the man she loves from those who are bent on his destruction. Based on true events, the reader is taken deep into the heart of national politics –all the way to Congress and the President of the United States.
Join the conversation: Have you had to trust the Lord in a dangerous situation?