Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Behind Prison Bars

Thousands of yards of razor-wire stretch before us. Concrete buildings. Officers. We pull our bus to a stop and step out to unload our sound equipment. Each prison facility is a new experience, with unique challenges, battles, victories.

Going through security can be tedious, but we're so grateful for many patient officers who go the extra mile to allow a group our size to enter the institution. They check everyone individually, looking in the nooks and craneys of our equipment.

Walking through the courtyards its often perfectly quiet, as if to deny the fact that hundreds of men or women spend years of their life here. We smile at each other, silently praying for the evening ahead...

It's hard to believe the week of We Care Crusades are half over already. Last night we were encouraged as we entered the facility and discovered a couple officers working there were also believers! The service was held in the visitation room, where seats for around 240 were arranged in the room. How exciting it was to see the volunteers scrambling to set up more chairs as over 280 men walked through the door!

Singing in front of a crowd such as that is quite an experience. Regulations don't allow photography, so we'll have to surfice by trying to explain. As we sing, we notice a wide variety of responses...

Faces aglow with joy and excitement, it's usually fairly obvious the ones who have come to a saving knowledge of Jesus -- they never stop smiling and often jump in with a hearty "Amen!" or "Hallelujah!" In the midst of trying circumstances, how can one explain such joy aside from Jesus Christ?!

Others appear to be sceptical, sullen, or deeply hurting.

How precious it is to know that these are not a mere sea of faces. God knows each one, He loves each one.....and extends the offer of fellowship and restoration to any who would recieve.

What an amazing God we serve!

Thank you all for your prayers this week -- we've really sensed a sweetness of the Lord's Spirit at work in each of the services. Many men have responded to the salvation invitation, with believers also coming for specific prayer needs. Praise the Lord for the victory that is found in Him!

"Thine, O LORD, is the greatness,
and the power, and the glory,
and the victory, and the majesty:
for all that is in the heaven and in the earth is Thine;
Thine is the kingdom, O LORD,
and Thou art exalted as Head above all."
2 Chron 29:11


~Desiree~ said...

Well, I an praying for you as you try to help those many loss people.

Ellie said...

Thanks for keepin' us updated. We will be praying!

Grace Mally said...

Wow, that is so encouraging. Thank you for sharing the great report and for describing it all so well. I can envision it even without pictures. :)It's very exciting to hear how the Lord is working.

Stephanie said...

Praise God for His work! May God continue to work in the hearts of the people you are bringing the salvation message to.