We recently received a letter from a prisoner in Virginia serving a 15-year-sentence. He wrote in part because he had just been turned down for parole. That disappointment led him to read An Anchor for the Soul. The book led him to a new sense of his own need for Christ. Here’s how he put it:
After reading your book, I realized I needed to have a personal relationship with God.
I must believe that Jesus died and rose the third day, and that his death was for my sins. If I believe this, that I shall be saved.
I learned this a long time ago, (but) I thought that treating people good, living a good life, praying and reading the Bible was enough.
But I was wrong.
I needed to trust in His promises and not my own needs and wants.
I know now that without faith it is impossible to please God.
I just want you to know that I hear what God is saying to me.
He has one more appeal (to the US Supreme Court). How does he feel about things now?
I know that no matter what happens God is in control, and my life will be much better now that I’m letting Him do His will in my life, and not trying to do things my own way.
One statement stood out to me: “I hear what God is saying to me.” That’s hard for all of us, isn’t it? It’s hard to slow down long enough to hear God’s voice in Scripture. In this case, the disappointment of being turned down for parole led him to read Anchor, which led him to see his need for Jesus Christ.
It’s not by works, but by faith in Christ who died for us and rose on the third day.
Going to prison is hard.
Spending 15 years behind bars is hard.
Getting turned down for parole is very hard.
Through it all, this man has discovered the Good News of Jesus Christ.
May God give us all open hearts to hear what He is saying.
Meanwhile, pray for this brother. We’re glad to have a small part in the big thing God is doing in prisons across America.