Wednesday, July 28, 2010

From the road, behind the prison walls and into the light

Volume 5, Issue 7
From the road, behind the prison walls and into the light

Our summer project bands have had the INCREDIBLE privilege and opportunity to actually go inside prisons around the U.S. Yes, to take the Gospel message to the prisoners. Those who may actually never see sunlight or at least as much as you or I do. Their world revolves around steel bars, concrete slab scenery and matching orange outfits. This summer Keynote partnered primarily with Prisons/Juvenile Detention Centers, Military bases and other key cities where Campus Crusade hosts a summer project.

We’ve compiled stories from the road for you. May they encourage you. Your partnership makes these opportunities possible to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Swerve-Fort Knox army post in KY -basic training camp.This concert was for ~1200 soldiers from the ages of 17-23. soldiers loved the music and messages and were enthusiastic in showing us through their awesome participation. later, we discovered that out of 386 comment cards (only about a third of our audience), 101 soldiers indicated a decision for Christ and an additional 76 wanted to talk with someone. One soldier, Andrew, who wanted to talk with someone more, explained that he was raised in an atheistic home, but had a “change of heart.” It was so encouraging to know that, even though a decision may not have been made today, a seed was planted.

Young Isaac-Panhandle of Florida- We have just been BLOWN AWAY by all that God has done in the last five days! We’ve played 8 shows in 4 different prisons, and have had such an unbelievable response from the inmates at every location. These guys are just STARVING for the new life and hope that Jesus offers. Despite sick singers, stickler security guards, shows in 100% humidity and 100 degree heat, and the general atmosphere of oppression that hangs over these institutions, Christ has claimed 103 hearts for himself. And beyond that, we’ve had a huge number of men request more information about knowing God, and have had countless conversations with inmates that are still wrestling with, yet intrigued by Him.

We’ve noticed a recurring theme in our conversations with these men: the feeling that their lives are not yet presentable to God, that they have to clean up their act before falling at his feet. One comment card read, “Does God save prisoners? Do we even deserve it?” What a privilege it is to be the one to break the good news that Christ’s love transcends who we are right now; we don’t “fix” our lives before coming to Him, but rather, we invite Him into the mess and heartbreak… then HE is the one who changes our lives! I had one special conversation with a guy my age named James. I asked him what was holding him back from giving his life to Jesus, and he told me that he didn’t want to “make a decision I couldn’t follow through on.” He was scared of giving his life to Jesus and then failing later. I promptly informed him that I’ve been following Jesus for 17 years and that I still fail on a pretty regular basis, but I told him some of my story, and my similar struggle with inviting God into the messy parts of my life. One thing led to another and we ended up getting to go through the Knowing God Personally booklet, and at the end James invited Jesus into his life—as did Joey, the guy in front of us who had eavesdropped on the whole conversation!

* For more stories, band photos, and prayer requests visit the post below on our blog:

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