Adoption, Transplants & Other Blessings

Sep 17, 2017

by Rick Van Ravenswaay
Pastor, Cornerstone Prison Church
South Dakota State Penitentiary

With all that is known about God, there are a great many mysteries and at least that many surprises!  It is no secret that many people want nothing to do with God.  They can’t see God, don’t trust God, have not felt loved by God and the list goes on.  Yet they breathe air they cannot see and put their hope in a retirement account, the value of which is only visible on their monthly statements.  Yet, it is my experience that God is every bit as real as air and God’s love makes every breath I take possible. 

Many find it a mystery-surprise is that God loves people – all people, in fact God IS love.  As a prison pastor, I have met many a person filled with doubt that they can be loved, especially by God.  One of the first people that I met with this struggle I found in the mirror.  The problem was I thought God loves like people love and people often hurt us.  The mystery is that God loves us as we are with a perfect love.  The world says, “not good enough.”  "But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8).  Now I am blessed to be able to see God’s love first and the love of others as an extension of God’s love. 

While we were yet sinners… reaches us in a broken state, and like one of us buying a used car, looks us over and sees the potential hidden behind the wear and tear of life.  Changes are ahead, not as a type of condemnation, rather to bring out the potential.  God’s words in Ezekiel 36:26 read, “"I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.”  When we accept God’s love for us and open ourselves to being who God designed us to be, we will be changed! In my own life and inside the walls of prison, I know God is real because I have seen hearts change through the experience of God’s love.  I appreciate having a front row seat to view God’s handiwork, and it is awesome.  

All of us in the PCA Family are encouraged by your prayers, strengthened by your encouragement and moved by your support.

Category: love

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