We all know the apostle Paul and his life and ministry while God put Him in prison. Paul knew that he was in prison for the sake of the Gospel–not just because He preached the Gospel, but actually, being in prison was for the purpose that those in prison may hear the Gospel.
Some of you may know that I have a very dear friend who through some very unfortunate, yet God-ordained providences, God has placed him in prison. He has struggled deeply with many fears, anxieties, and human weaknesses. But his love for Christ and the Gospel has thrived. Take time to read this recent letter I received from him and marvel at God’s astounding goodness to use him as a tool for the spread of the Gospel. After you read it, spend some time in worshipping our great God!
“I JUST WANTED TO SEND AN UPDATE TO YOU — AND SHARE A BLESSING WITH YOU, THAT I JUST EXPERIENCED THIS PAST WEEK.
30 MONTHS AGO–WHEN I WAS IN PIEDMONT REGIONAL JAIL, AWAITING MY RESENTENCING HEARING IN RALEIGH, NC, I HAD THE PRIVILEGE OF LEADING A MAN NAMED WILL TO THE LORD. (WILL WAS MY BUNKMATE) A LOCAL CHURCH CAME EACH WEEK TO PIEDMONT REGIONAL JAIL AND GAVE USED BIBLES TO THE INMATES–THAT HAD BEEN DONATED BY THEIR CHURCH MEMBERS. I GOT A LARGE PRINT “OLD FASHIONED GOSPEL HOUR” BIBLE FOR WILL–AND HE ASKED ME EVERY MORNING–TO WRITE NOTES IN THE FRONT OF HIS BIBLE, AND HELP HIM STUDY HIS NEW BIBLE EACH DAY. I LEFT THAT JAIL AFTER MY RESENTENCING HEARING, AND WENT BACK TO FT. DIX.–THINKING I PROBABLY WOULD NEVER SEE WILL AGAIN. ONE MONTH LATER–WILL WAS TRANSFERRED TO FT. DIX, AND ENDED UP BEING IN OUR CLASSES AND BIBLE STUDIES THERE AT FT. DIX, AND CONTINUED TO GROW IN THE LORD. I WAS THEN TRANSFERRED TO PENSACOLA CAMP, AND THOUGHT, AGAIN, THAT I WOULD NEVER SEE WILL AGAIN. 3 MONTHS AGO–WILL SHOWED UP HERE AT PENSACOLA CAMP !! HE HAD BEEN TRANSFERRED HERE TO ENROLL IN THE BOP DRUG PROGRAM !! HE SHOWED ME HIS BIBLE–HOW HE HAD CONTINUED TO STUDY AND ADD TO HIS NOTES IN HIS BIBLE–THAT WE HAD BEEN WORKING ON TOGETHER AT FT. DIX. HE NOW IS INVOLVED IN ALL OF THE CHAPEL SERVICES HERE, AND IN OUR CLASSES AND BIBLE STUDIES.
WILL HAS A ROOM-MATE NAMED ALEX, THAT HE INVITED TO CHURCH–AND ALSO INVITED TO ENROLL IN OUR PURPOSE DRIVEN LIFE CLASS. ALEX STARTED THE CLASS–AND AFTER OUR 4TH CLASS– ASKED ME TO MEET WITH HIM PRIVATELY, AND I HAD THE PRIVILEGE OF LEADING ALEX TO THE LORD. ALEX HAS NOW BEEN STUDYING HIS BIBLE EVERY DAY–AND GROWING IN THE LORD–AND GETTING INVOLVED IN ALL OF THE CHAPEL SERVICES. IT IS A JOY TO SEE HIM RESPOND TO GOD’S WORD, AND THE LEADING OF THE HOLY SPIRIT IN HIS HEART AND LIFE.
WHILE I WAS AT FT. DIX–THERE WAS A MAN NAMED “MEJIA”–THAT LIVED IN MY DORM — AND HE CAME TO THE CHAPEL SERVICES, AND TO OUR TUESDAY NIGHT BIBLE STUDY CLASSES WITH STAN AND LISA. (STAN AND LISA ARE WONDERFUL VOLUNTEERS THAT CAME IN EVERY WEEK FROM A LOCAL CHURCH–TO TEACH IN THE TUESDAY NIGHT CLASSES). AFTER A COUPLE OF MONTHS, “MEJIA” CAME TO THE LORD–AND ENDED UP HELPING WITH THE SPANISH INTERPRETING IN THE SUNDAY SERVICES AT FT. DIX. WHEN I LEFT FT. DIX TO COME HERE–I DIDN’T THINK I WOULD EVER SEE “MEJIA” AGAIN EITHER. GUESS WHAT !! THIS PAST WEEK–“MEJIA” WAS ALSO TRANSFERRED TO PENSACOLA CAMP, TO ENROLL IN THE DRUG PROGRAM–AND WHEN HE ARRIVED HERE–HE WAS ASSIGNED TO LIVE IN WILL AND ALEX’S ROOM !! WHAT A BLESSING–GOD IS SO GOOD !!
THERE ARE 900 INMATES ON THIS COMPOUND–BUT GOD TOOK 3 MEN, FROM 3 DIFFERENT PARTS OF THE COUNTRY–THAT ALL ACCEPTED THE LORD WHILE IN PRISON–AND PUT THEM TOGETHER IN THE SAME ROOM– AND PUT THEM BACK TOGETHER WITH ME–SO THAT WE CAN CONTINUE TO MENTOR AND MINISTER TOGETHER, AND CONTINUE TO GROW IN THE LORD TOGETHER !! GOD TAKES CARE OF EVERY LITTLE DETAIL IN EACH OF OUR LIVES– WHILE WE ARE ON THIS JOURNEY !! I AM SO THANKFUL.
THE MAN THAT IS THE SPANISH INTERPRETER FOR OUR CHAPEL SERVICES HERE AT PENSACOLA– IS LEAVING TO GO HOME THIS NEXT WEDNESDAY. GOD BROUGHT “MEJIA” HERE AT JUST THE RIGHT TIME, SO THAT HE CAN TAKE OVER, AND HELP DO THE INTERPRETING FOR OUR CHAPEL SERVICES. WHAT A BLESSING–AND WHAT AN EXAMPLE OF GOD’S TIMING !!
THANK YOU AGAIN FOR YOUR LOVE AND FAITHFULNESS–AND FOR PRAYING FOR ME, AND FOR THE MEN THAT ARE COMING TO THE CLASSES–AND FOR THOSE THAT HAVE COME TO THE LORD. YOU HAVE AN INTEGRAL PART IN EACH OF THEIR LIVES, AND THEIR SPIRITUAL GROWTH IN GOD’S WORD.
I AM SO GRATEFUL TO THE LORD FOR YOU — AND FOR ALL THAT YOU HAVE DONE TO ENCOURAGE ME, AND TO HELP ME. I DO NOT TAKE IT FOR GRANTED. YOU ARE SUCH A BLESSING.
GOD BE WITH YOU, AND BLESS YOU.”
I LOVE YOU–