"A new guy joined us for Bible study today — new to the group and new to the faith. He came because of his roommate (a ‘regular’ whom I confirmed here 6 years ago), who readily shares his faith with others, and is eager to study the Bible with anyone who has questions. Our new guy sat quietly and didn’t say much, but he heard the Word of God, and the Holy Spirit had the opportunity to work in his heart. Just another great day, serving a great God and the people he so dearly loves. Chaplain Radsek "
"Last Sunday I had the privilege of participating in my first bible study at the country jail with Phil. Phil led the class on the familiar theme of repentance (always a key subject for the vital issues of sin and grace), and we all shared our reflections on the subject matter. I found the men to be very focused, attentive and moved by the message of God’s grace. I was also pleasantly surprised to see how much these men already knew about the Bible stories and concepts we discussed. It was a rewarding experience that has allowed me to better understand why many of my fellow volunteers have been doing this for years. Blessings to all of you as our summer days quickly pass. Dan (Adult Correctional Volunteer) "
"Our hymn for this week was Abide with Me. As we studied, one of the women said, "This is kind of like an Easter lesson." We began with the verses which the author had based the hymn upon (Luke 24, where the Emmaus disciples asked their walking stranger, "Stay with us"). We talked about what our "evening" in life may be. Great thoughts about depression and loneliness. Again, such comfort, referring back to last week's lesson about God's faithfulness, that even as life changes, our health and circumstances, our Good Lord, who "changes not" and whose "love stands firm forever" sticks with us. What a joy and privilege to share these amazing truths. Deaconess Owens. "
"It was quite hot and humid in the prison today, but the guys turned out in spite of the heat to hear the soul-refreshing Word of God. Now, while I only had to endure the lack of AC for the few hours that I was at the prison, "my guys" are not so fortunate. Please remember to keep all the inmates and correction officers in your prayers as they endure this heat without the benefit of AC. Chaplain Radsek "
"Do Christian argue and disagree? Yes they do! The disciples of Jesus argued amongst themselves. Paul and Barnabas had such a disagreement on who should go along on the second mission trip that they had to split up and go on different trips. Note the arguments can just be on earthly things. So today in congregations Christians may disagree about projects. Don’t let disagreements weaken your faith and your church worship. Stay in the Word of God. Let the Lord bring peace and harmony! Chaplain K. Wenzel "
"So here's a different 'take' on blind participation. Due to an in-house disaster drill at the Jail, the men couldn't come from their units for Bible study. Fortunately, some of the trustees were allowed to join me. One of the guys was completely blind, yet he was still able to participate by quoting Scriptures applicable to our study. I just had to give him the first word or two, and off he would go. We took to heart Jesus' promise, that "where two or three gather together in My Name, there am I with them." We rejoiced in the relationship Christians enjoy with Jesus through His Word. We trusted that the Holy Spirit would continue to guide us in our faith walk with Christ, giving us wisdom, peace, joy, love, and faithfulness. Alan (Adult Correctional Volunteer) "
"How can we celebrate God’s amazing grace in our lives, yet struggle to share it with others? While it might be relatively easy to receive grace, I find it difficult to share grace because it is messy. And there are those days I don’t want to get messy. The phone rings, and I say, ‘not now’ because I don’t want to deal with the mess of this other person’s life. Hasn’t he figured out how to stay out of trouble yet? And I fall short again. Thank you Jesus that you don’t tire of getting messy with me. You climb down into my mess and find a way to bring me comfort and strength once again. Chaplain M Wenzel "
"I had a new guy join my Bible study in prison yesterday (which doesn't happen as frequently as it does in the county jail setting). Sometimes the new guy comes by way of a referral, sent by one of my fellow-chaplains at another prison. Quite often, the new guy joins the group because one of my regulars has invited him to come. And sometimes, the Holy Spirit just leads the new guy to find us on his own (which was the case today). Regardless of their path, Jesus is happy to have them join His group, and so am I. Together, we happily sit at the feet of our Savior, listening to his Word. Chaplain Radsek "
"Recently, a lady brought a letter from her mother, which she wanted to read to our Bible study group. She felt it was helpful to her and believed it would be for others as well. She read it beautifully. It was a well-written, honest, and encouraging letter. The mother related that she had been watching a television program about God, and felt that the message would be helpful for her daughter. The preacher spoke of how God has a purpose for everything, and how we don't need to be anxious, but just be accepting of things and let God speak. It was a heart-felt letter and very touching to see the daughter sharing it. Little did the mother know that her letter would touch her daughter's heart so much, that she would share it with seven other women in Bible Study. God bless all letter-writers. You never know how God will use your writing! Deaconess Owens. "
"Forgiving someone is hard work. To forgive us God had to send Jesus to live a perfect life under God’s laws and then suffer and die upon the cross for all of our sins. Jesus worked beyond our understanding. In the Lord’s Prayer He teaches us to pray: “Forgive us our sins.” Then comes our hard part: “as we forgive those who sin against us.” We need God’s strength in Jesus to rightly forgive anyone. In faith we will have hard work to do. “Be kind to each other, sympathetic, forgiving each other as God has forgiven you through Christ.” (Ephesians 4:32) Chaplain K. Wenzel. "