In Matthew 25:36-40, Jesus says that when we care for prisoners, we are caring for Him:
36’I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’ 37″Then the righteous will answer him, ‘LORD, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’ 40″The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’
We partner with Fox Valley Jail Ministry, and people from Christ The Rock volunteer in our local jails leading Bible studies, playing our Sunday messages, and praying with men and women who are incarcerated.
But sometimes, ministry to those in jail happens in unexpected ways – and sometimes, those in jail want to give back out of their newfound love for Jesus. A letter was delivered to the church office this month from D.G., who is serving a sentence locally:
I have been incarcerated for 18 months, so you may wonder why I am writing to your church. A friend of mine invited me to attend Christ The Rock a few times in 2011-2012 when I was searching for meaning and a purpose. Sadly, some poor decisions after that led to my present situation – but through another inmate who was a Christian, I accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior. We spent a lot of our time studying the Bible and worshipping. My friend has since been released, but I am 100% convinced that the Lord put him in my life to lead me to true freedom in Jesus. I write because Christ The Rock is the last church I attended, and I recently received a sum of money and want to tithe 10% of it. It is not a lot, but I trust it will be used well. Gratefully, D.G.
What a beautiful sign of repentance, and a changed heart that is living for Christ! Please remember to pray for those who are incarcerated. For justice, for a fresh start when they’re released, and most of all, that they would meet the Savior during their time in prison.