Every few weeks we pack up our kids, some food, and other necessary items and head off to prison. And we all love it! The rickety bridge we have to cross to get there sometimes makes our hearts beat a little faster, though.
We go to visit Agnes, a young woman who is serving a 12 year sentence for a pretty serious crime. We don’t know if she is guilty or if she is just taking the blame for someone else. Agnes is from a tribal group where an NTM couple has been working for years. These missionaries asked if we would be willing to take Agnes the Bible lessons in her tribal language for her to read and study. These are the same lessons that the missionaries used to present the Gospel to her tribe several years ago.
No one else in the prison speaks her tribal language so when we first gave her the lessons and she was able to read her language again, it was a very special time! She told us on our next visit that the book (containing the Bible lessons and verses in her language) was now her best friend! We don’t know how many times she has read through the lessons – probably lots. This next time we go we will also be taking her the complete books of Genesis, Exodus and Mark that the missionaries have translated.
Now, of course, we don’t speak Agnes’ tribal language, but we are able to communicate with her in Pidgin. So, Agnes reads the lessons on her own and then when we visit her, we talk to her about what she has read. We only have about 30 minutes with her each time we go.
That we know of, we are the only visitors she ever has. It is a really neat opportunity for us and for our kids to be able to be a blessing and encouragement to Agnes. All of us really look forward to our prison days! Luke and Titus enjoy the long walk from the prison entrance – down a big hill, back up another hill and then on to the actual fenced-in women’s prison area. While we sit and talk with Agnes, they either play and talk together or make up a game with whatever they find lying around. Caleb just smiles and tries to grab the books! Of course, all the ladies in the prison love to see and touch the white baby! Having never been in prison, I can only imagine what it must be like to be separated for that long from your spouse and children. Our arrival usually brings a smile to lots of faces.
Will you please be praying for our family as we spend time with Agnes? Pray that we would be able to clearly communicate with her as we talk with her about the lessons and Scripture that she has been reading and studying. And please pray for Agnes -that she would have good understanding of what she is reading and that she would believe it! Please pray that Agnes will trust in Christ alone for her salvation!