“Grace, mercy, and peace be with you from God the Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the Father, in truth and love.” II John 1:3. “Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers.” III John 1:2. What a beautiful greeting. The Bible amazes me over and over again. He speaks what He wants for us; grace, mercy, peace, truth, love. And if that weren’t enough, He also wants us to prosper in all things, in health and even in our soul. When our soul is good, it’s all good. Our bodies don’t always cooperate with scripture and don’t realize that they’re healed and made whole by the blood of the Lamb. But when your soul prospers in the knowledge that you are spirit led and spirit fed, you rise above what your body is feeling. It all changes because of Who He is that lives inside of you. His energy is eternal, His strength is eternal, His Word is everlasting, He calls us to stand, put your eyes on Him and all else fades in comparison. There is no other Book that has had so many sermons spoken from it and yet it is still fresh, many of its mysteries still unsolved. Think of how many scholars, even before Jesus time, poured over it, and yet still missed it when the prophecies were fulfilled in their sight. There is no other book like it that has been read by so many, talked about for thousands of years, by thousands of people and yet we can still receive a new word from it. The God who put together such a unique piece of literature, a Word that is as powerful today as when He first spoke it, can certainly see you through anything that is before you. Sunday when I was listening to my pastor speak, I thought how does he always come up with new insight into the Word, and that was when I started thinking about how amazing it really is. There is no other book we could read or would want to read over and over again, that could be so intriguing that even scientists and the brightest intellectuals cannot solve its prophecies. They can make a phone that can record your life, do your banking, connect you with anyone anywhere face to face, give you a roadmap across the country, but they cannot decipher the Word of God. They have completely missed that His desire for relationship with us is simply so we can have grace, mercy, peace, truth & love.
At the Madison Women’s Prison He gave me a unique outpouring of all the above. A girl came up to me during the worship at the beginning of our first service and asked if I remembered her. I didn’t recognize her. She said “I’m Penny King.” I was totally stunned. She simply hugged me and walked off. More than 20 years ago her and I were at the Indiana Women’s Prison together. My bunkie’s name was Bonnie, in her 40’s. I was in my 20’s. Bonnie had a girlfriend on the street named Tammy who mailed her a really nice denim jacket. Within a couple weeks of Bonnie receiving it, Tammy hung herself. I was called from work to be in the counselors office with Bonnie when they gave her the news. It was heartbreaking. Penny was getting ready to leave for work release and she had asked Bonnie a few different times to sell her the jacket. Penny was well off and didn’t take no for an answer. But obviously because of the deep sentimental value, Bonnie wasn’t selling, no matter how much Penny offered her. When someone is leaving for work release their property gets packed up a couple days before they leave and sent out, other than what they need for the next few days. When Penny’s property got packed up the jacket disappeared. Bonnie was devastated but there was no way to prove where the jacket went. Penny had beautiful hair down to her waist. She was saying she really wanted it trimmed before she left. I volunteered. We went into the Dayroom. Bonnie was playing cards with some friends and looked at me questioningly as she seen me & Penny walking towards a table, me with scissors in hand. As Penny sat down, without a word, I simply lifted a large hunk of her hair up towards the back of her head and cut it off. I did this two more times before she realized what was happening. She yelled, “What are you doing?!” I said, “What you asked me to, I’m trimming your hair.” She ran out the dayroom. It only seemed right to me that since Bonnie lost something she loved, Penny should also lose something too. The next day her hair was cut off to her neck, it was the only way it could be straightened out. That afternoon she left for work release. I had not seen her since.
In June of this year I had a dream I was at this Madison Women’s Prison, speaking on healing, so I said okay Lord, that’s what we’re supposed to do. I felt strongly that it was to be emotional healing. So here I was about to open the session, and someone whom I had so greatly hurt was in the audience and it had never been made right. As I opened I asked where Penny was, she raised her hand, I said, “I’m so sorry.” And I began crying. She came up and hugged me and went and sat back down. I said, “I’m unworthy to be up here because of how cruel I was to her years ago.” I don’t remember all my words after that. But I told them about our God who is greater than any of our failures. I didn’t give them the story because it wouldn’t have been fair to her. At the end she came up to me and told me how this had to be God. She said she’s in a program at the prison and the step she is currently working on is forgiving people who’ve hurt her. She said she loved me and hugged me. I thanked her and told her I loved her too. Grace, mercy, peace, truth, & love. How wonderful is our God. He healed both of us in one swoop.
Over 180 women came for the evening session and more than half of them came up for individual prayer. He is a God of restoration. I had a dream a few nights ago that we were going into a men’s prison, and God told me that the “overflow from the prisons has to be taken out to the churches.” So Father God, we agree right now that a spirit of repentance will be released upon the churches of America, that people will become hungry for Your Presence, that they will seek the God of restoration and find in You grace, mercy, peace, truth, & love. We will touch and agree that our God is big enough to stir up His children, to call back to Himself those who are called by His Name to preach good tidings to the poor, to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, to open the prisons for those who are bound, to proclaim the acceptable year to the Lord, to comfort all those who mourn, to give them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness, that they may be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that You may be glorified! Because when You bring back the captive ones of Zion, we will be like those who dreamed, our mouths will be filled with laughter and our tongues with singing! Then the nations will say, “The Lord has done great things for them”, The Lord has done great things for us, and we are glad! Those who sow in tears will reap in joy! We thank You for Your Word God, that we may proclaim its promises, In Jesus Name, Amen. (Isaiah 61 & Psalm 126)
That right there is why we love His Word! We can pray it, stand on it, dwell in it, believe on it, hope in it, hide in it, use it as a shield and a banner, it covers everything!
Now to get down to business; The COPE conference in Daytona for September was canceled, much to my delight. I know that one day I’ll be leaving here but hopefully not as a statistic of someone who was trying to defy the odds of a hurricane. I’m actually writing this a few weeks early as I’ll be in Alabama when this is being mailed to you, at the four mens prisons we’ll be going into with the We Care Prison Ministry team. So I’ll have to tell you all about that in next month’s letter. Be blessed in the Name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus, the Name that is above every name, “who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be the glory in the church, by Christ Jesus, to all generations, forever and ever, Amen.” Eph 3:20-21
Love, your sister, Pam
Oct 6 & 7: Little Sandy Correctional, Sandy Hook, Ky
Oct 8, 22,29th : Work Release, Ft. Wayne; Oct13th Redemption House, Ft Wayne, IN
Oct 21; Madison Women’s Prison