Hope Behind Bars

Tony Corley, MSU
July 12, 2017

 Tony Corley

We only have three more weeks left here in Florida, and we are excited for all that is being planned…youth events, church events, and events at the prison.  I can't wait to see how God will use us throughout the rest of the time we have here. God has definitely been at work.

On Wednesday, I taught my Bible study on the first sections of Ephesians 4. This week's class was probably one of the best I've had so far. The inmates were very curious about what the scriptures had to say. You could tell they were thinking hard on the true meaning and wanting to know the message behind the passage. They asked many questions, and we had some really awesome discussions. Please pray that they continue to have a hunger for knowledge and a desire to learn.

On Thursday, Riley and I went through a bunch of donated books in the warehouse. We had to pick out the good books and the books our library didn't already have. It was a unique morning because we were able to talk to those inmates that are from the work camp down the road, so we don't get to talk to them very much. We also gained a new chapel orderly this week. It's been fun getting to know him and watching him fit into the team.

 Obstacle Course

I've been able to have a lot of good conversations this week with inmates who needed to unload their burdens or seek advice. Riley and I are definitely in a unique position because we lack the authority of a chaplain, so they are more trusting of us. It allows us to have more open and real conversations with the guys.

This afternoon, I preached at the prison. I really enjoyed preaching there and getting to share a message with them. It was probably the best sermon I have given since I have been here. I give credit to God alone for that, and for all that He has done through the ministry here. He is definitely working and moving through the prison.

Please continue to pray for opportunities to have gospel-oriented conversations with the inmates. Also, pray for opportunities to disciple them. Pray for Riley and me as we grow and learn through our experiences here. Pray that we resist the temptations of the devil and stand strong when the devil attacks our ministry.