Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Hello Bob!

Meet "Bob," who has been in prison for 10 years and has his first opportunity to go before the parole board and seek his release. Bob is the picture of genuine conversion since early in his incarceration.  He has been quite active in worship, classes, and personal one-on-one teaching for almost 10 years. He is anxious to be released so he can have the freedom to tell everyone he meets about the saving power of Jesus Christ.

The day comes for his meeting with the parole board. He enters the room, with letters from prisoners, letters from pastors, his good conduct certification, recommendation for release from a couple of well known business leaders. More than anything else, he is armed with the power of God and finds great strength because of his constant life of prayer. 

In boldness and confidence, Bob addresses the board. After the presentation of all his accumulated recommendations, Bob felt sure his parole was imminent.  The board, however, came back with a ruling of  "five more years of incarceration."  Bob was devastated. 

From his prison cell, alone with his thoughts, Bob cried out to God. His agony was evidenced by his tears. His prayers seemingly weren't being heard, and if they were heard, they weren't being answered.  When Bob was leaving his cell for the evening meal, he felt God saying to him, "They are watching you."  He prayed again and thanked God for the reminder. Then Bob describes his walk to the cafeteria by saying, "When they look at me, all they see is His righteousness."

Note: I have not heard anything else about Bob since I first wrote about him. I have no idea if his situation has changed.  What I do know is, the message of God's righteousness being seen through his life is powerful, regardless of which side of "the wall" we reside.

Maybe you are where you are today because that is where God wants and needs you to be. Regardless of our location, situation or our circumstances, may we be so devoted to Him, that when others look at us, they see only "His righteousness."


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