As we enter the holiday season our hearts are full of thanksgiving as we meditate on all that God has given us so freely, but we also remember our students. As you read this month’s newsletter you will meet Richard, who has grown in his walk with the Lord through the Bible study courses offered through Write-Way Prison Ministries. We give thanks for what God has done in his life. You will also meet Mary Helen, who asks us to be especially diligent in prayer for our students as the holiday season is often a time of sadness and longing for their families.
In this newsletter you can read of the effect of Hurricane Harvey on both our students and several of our branches. At the time of publication we have been able to track our students in their temporary locations. We have also been working with our branches that were most severely affected by the flooding.
On the second page of this month’s newsletter is an article written by one of the members of Write-Way Prison Ministries Board of Directors. It gives a succinct overview of our mission. It is the Lord’s doing and we give Him all the praise.
In this newsletter Michael says, “Your work is not in vain”; Lyman says, ” Emmaus Bible studies are at the top of the list”; and Paula says, “In the free world I was lost; in prison I am found”. We praise God that He has given us the privilege of providing Bibles studies to inmates in Texas and Louisiana free of charge so they can come to know Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior and can grow in the grace of knowledge of Him Who has saved us.
The world we live in is often chaotic. What can we do? God’s Word reminds us that He is present with us so we need not fear (Psalm 46:1-2a). We should replace worries with Scripture to guide our thinking (Philippians 4:8). Through the studies offered by Write Way our students are learning to depend on the Word of God to direct their thinking and to change their outlook on life.
God is at work in the prisons of Texas and Louisiana today. Much like in the free world, God has gifted some of the inmates with the spiritual gift of evangelism. You will be inspired as you read how God is using Matthew to bring others to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. Another testimony tells us ways that Satan is fighting back. As God’s Word goes into the prisons and jails, pray with us that His Word will not return to Him empty but will achieve His purpose (Isaiah 55:11).
Our blessed Lord gives us many reasons to rejoice at Write-Way Prison Ministries. One cause for rejoicing is the number of inmates who come to know Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior each month. The second testimony in this month’s newsletter is from one of our students who came to know the Lord by reading a Bible while in solitary confinement (interesting sidelight – note how he got the Bible). Another cause for rejoicing is when we see a student apply Scripture to his or her own life, resulting in spiritual growth. The first testimony in this month’s newsletter is an excellent example of this. God is at work in the prison system!
Giving thanks: the Psalmist tells us to give thanks to the Lord and to praise His Name (Ps. 100:4) and Paul told the church at Colossee to be thankful (Col. 3:15). As our students get into the Word of God and discover new life in Christ, they often cannot help but express thanksgiving to the Lord. Read this month’s newsletter to catch this spirit of thanksgiving – and then give thanks yourself for His great work in their lives and ours.
One of our branch volunteers painted this thought on a display board: “God sometimes takes us into trouble waters – not to drown us but to cleanse us.” Many of our students are experiencing “troubled waters” as they serve time for what they have done in the past. At the same time, many have experienced the cleansing that has come with knowing Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. Read their testimonies in this months newsletter.