God At Work Through IM

GraceLinks Update

GraceLinks Update

“You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives” (Genesis 50:20).

These words of Joseph to his brothers are such a beautiful and strong confession of faith. Over a thousand years later, Paul expresses this same trust in our loving God when he writes to the Romans: “We know that all things work together for the good of those who love God, for those who are called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28).

These two passages from God’s Word are often what the Holy Spirit brings to mind when we reflect on one of the facets of our work here at Institutional Ministries—the email devotions we call GraceLinks.

When the world shut down for Covid, our ministry to incarcerated souls almost came to a complete stop. Our chaplains were not allowed to enter jails or prisons for their scheduled Bible studies and worship services. The walled-in souls we had been serving seemed to be without any means of hearing or reading God’s Word.

But what Satan was only too delighted to use for the harm of our inmate congregations, the Lord was able to use for good. God took that desperate situation and used it for the saving of many lives for eternity.

At the time when visits to prisons and jails stopped, we had been sending devotions via email to just a few inmates. Very few. In fact, just two. But, after much prayer and by the guidance of the Holy Spirit, our ministry leaders saw an opportunity. Could we expand our outreach through these devotions? Could we use these devotions to share God’s love in a new and unique way? God’s answer was a whole-hearted “Yes!” “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us” (1 John 5:14).

From the very small congregation of two recipients of GraceLinks devotions, the Holy Spirit has built an ever-growing online congregation of over 900 souls. Who could have imagined that? But why should we be surprised? We know that “God…is able, according to the power that is at work within us, to do infinitely more than we can ask or imagine” (Ephesians 3:20).

Thank you for being part of this important ministry. Thank you for your prayers and offerings to help us do this important work. Thank you for bringing the light of God’s Word to these walled-in souls of our communities. We thank you, and the inmates thank you:

  • “These devotions mean so much to me. I need to hear from God daily.”
  • “I really appreciate the daily emails. I love reading them and looking up the verses.”
  • “Thank you very much for this latest email. It was right on point. I needed it more than you know!”

To God be the glory!

Louise Wendland

GraceLinks Copy Editor

 

 
 

Ministry Behind the Walls

Institutional Ministries is a nonprofit organization established in 1901 that carries out behind-the-walls ministry by shining the light of Jesus’ love into hearts.