Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Every Knee will bow - Jesus Christ is Lord!

Christmas in Prison

Merry Christmas!

Tomorrow is the Christmas service at the prison.  I'm excited about it!  We're looking to spread the joy of Jesus' birth to the men at Newton Prison.  The theme is - Light has come!  My message will be based on John 1:1-18.  Verse 4 - In him was life, and that life was the light of men.  Verse 9 - The true light that gives light to every man was coming into the world.

It should be a wonderful service.  Faith CRC of Pella is bringing in a praise team.  Some of the men are giving testimonies about how God has brought them from darkness into His Light.  Shine on, people of God!

Friday, December 2, 2011


With the end of 2011 fast approaching, I've been thinking about giving.  The Apostle Paul had a thing or two to say about giving.  Here are some of his words from 2nd Corinthians 9:6-15:

Generosity Encouraged

  Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.  Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.  And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. As it is written: 
Now he who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness.  You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God.
This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of the Lord’s people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God. Because of the service by which you have proved yourselves, others will praise God for the obedience that accompanies your confession of the gospel of Christ, and for your generosity in sharing with them and with everyone else. And in their prayers for you their hearts will go out to you, because of the surpassing grace God has given you. Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!

   “They have freely scattered their gifts to the poor; their righteousness endures forever."

Proclaiming Christ Behind Bars

Today Rose & I had lunch with Nate Vander Stelt of Christian Reformed Home Missions.  He showed me this article in Home Missions Fall Newsletter:

Proclaiming Christ Behind Bars


Proclaiming Christ Behind Bars

God is powerfully changing lives through New Life Prison Church, a new Home Missions-supported prison ministry at the Newton Correctional Facility.
Inmates are meeting Christ through this new church's weekly prayer meetings and Bible studies, led by pastor Rick Admiraal. "Guys have begun to open up their lives in this setting, sharing new insights with one another. It has been a joy to be able to pray for one another. We are building community day by day through the power of the Holy Spirit," he says.
Admiraal specifically points to an inmate named Carlos for an example of how God is at work at New Life. "One of our great joys is seeing Carlos' face as he rolls into Bible study in his wheelchair," says Admiraal. "Carlos always has a big smile on his face. He sets the bar high for us by praying for those in solitary confinement and remembering to pray for his enemies. He also blesses our group with diversity by praying in Spanish. He enjoys the Spanish-English parallel Bible given to him by New Life."
For Admiraal, prison ministry is a passion, fostered through his experiences volunteering in a Michigan prison and partaking in a ten-week internship with Home Missions-supported Cornerstone Prison Church in Sioux Falls, South Dakota during the summer of 2009. "I'm grateful for what God has done so far," he says. "I am hoping He will grow the church both in numbers and spiritual maturity by the power of His Spirit."

—Background information sourced from the December 2010 "Ministry Messenger" written by Donna Biddle.