Monday, February 2, 2015

Doing Time 8 Inmate Prayers

This is another installment of Spark's notes at the Peoria County Jail:
     Before every service I ask if an inmate is willing to come forward and open the service with a prayer. Sometimes it is a recitation of the Lord's Prayer, sometimes they rival anything you might hear from a pastor of a mega church. Many times I hear them say, "God, thanks for waking us up this morning."
      I've usually taken that for granted.. The one I hope I never forget started like this. An inmate of about 18 years old walked up and told me, before he stepped in front of the microphone, that he had never done this before. I told him to just pray like he usually did and not worry about all the people. He said, "I mean I've never prayed before. How do I do this?" I said, "just talk to God and tell Him how you feel." I remember how it came straight from the heart and how sincere he was. I don't remember much of what he said but I'll never forget how he finished it. Instead of "in Jesus name amen" he said, "and God, you have a good day." 
       After thinking it over and analyzing the words of that prayer, God had just heard from one of His creation that had never spoken to Him before, and been asked to have a good day. I think God considered that a great day.
Diane and I took the week off last week to go on a cruise with a bunch of our church family and had a great time. Emily, Eva Jean, Shirley, Diane R and Rachel filled in for us on Thursday. They were able to process the studies and read the letters but not enter the letters. Today it was important for me to go down to the shop to enter the letters for tomorrow and by the time I was done there were 254 labels printed ready to go on the Bibles to be mailed out. Tomorrow a bunch more letters will come in and I don't think we have enough Bibles again! By the way we are now OVER 33,000 prisoners on the rolls. Tim Martin has promised to bring another load of Bibles in on Wednesday. Diane was able to hire Wayne printing to print up 225,000 copies that will be shipped right to the Bible distribution warehouse in Goodfield. That was only the first 4 lessons of the Basic Bible study and the letter explaining the study. Diane will still have to make copies of the 5 through 50 on our machine. sure hope it holds  up.

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