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Monthly Archives: December 2015

Testimony Part 2 – Steven Wei

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“Testimony”

Part 2 of 2

By Steven Wei

God stopped me by use of others and kept pouring the bible scriptures into me. I soaked it up like a sponge, asking God the answers to everything. I pled to God to teach me everything I missed. I prayed  on my knees on the concrete cell floor, hours on end, I asked God to mold me, take me as his own, help me serve him, purify me, hold me tight, never let me go, love me, fix me, stop the pain, make me the man I need to be for his use. I apologized to God day after day, asked for forgiveness for everything I’d ever done.

The bible my mom got me the week I was arrested became my lifeline. The exact verses I needed miraculously jumped off the pages as I prayed and read. People – other inmates – kept delivering teachings to me as God saw I needed. Magazines and books about the Word, giving teaching and the perspectives I needed kept dropping on my bunk at nearly every prayer for them. I was stunned repeatedly by revelation and prayers given me so quickly. Little by little my fears left me and my hopes in God became more solid. Jesus’ love was showing up each day in and around me.

During this span of 19 months in the county jail, things kept getting worse. The word of God was literally my only hope, my only lifeline. I kept foolishly trying anything I saw to help myself. All seemed to backfire. I lost – yet I gained.

God taught me many lessons! He taught me so much in jail, and more in prison. I can’t list the sheer volume of things God taught me, it would take forever. I was wrong on everything. I needed to make God’s will mine. Put God’s desires of the heart into mine. God knows my needs and my wants before I ask. Yet I continue to struggle today with begging the Lord to allow me the grace to be a daddy to my babies yet before they’re grown. I ask for the love of my family, for restoration. I still ask God to give me more of his wisdom. My hopes are in him only. I admit I still struggle with trying to take the reins of control upon myself, and compete with God in his plans for me, yet I know and pray to God always that he is in control, he is allowing what he allows for his reasons higher than our thoughts and wiser than our human foolishness we think is wise or clever.

I ask God please shut and open doors for me which are right or wrong because I cannot ever do right without him, his love, grace, power, strength, goodness.

I’ve been driven to my knees in helplessness. I loved a life of sin and did not acknowledge it or realize it. I was reborn in a sloppy, tear-puddle, snot dripping, teeth-gnashing, pain so tangible it pierced every fiber of my being. I know now, the rolling ways of thoughts of hate, revenge, destruction, suicide, in the first month of jail was the result of a real spiritual battle around me as I clung to God, in Jesus’ name I prayed growling out “Please God, help me!!!!”

I’d never know such depths of self-horror, never heard of such literal caged fury, in my cell. I hit my head on the concrete walls, tried to hang myself, tried to write to my family in vain, screamed a primal scream, every muscle in my body flexed to popping.

God saved me. He held me in his hugs and did not let go. God saved me from damnation, from myself, from sin, he healed me. It took time. It continues to this day 5 ½ years later. God gave me a smile, peace, love, forgiveness, wisdom, teachings, hope, faith. Agape love. How can I not give the same to others? As Christ gave us all. God has blessed me so much, I cannot count each day. God blessed me before rebirth, but I didn’t see it. Now I do. The blinders are off.

I know I am responsible only for the sins in my life and God responsible for any good I’ve done. I know God’s mercy is endless, his love all encompassing, his wisdom perfection. It’s a gift of unmerited favor – grace for God to have saved me and able to use me. And he has, many moments, I’ve been blessed to encourage, discuss, and boost faith in the word with a multitude of budding Christians going through similar disasters/storms. We are all hoping for the same things, to be sent home, to raise our children, to be husbands again, to serve God in all we do. But we acknowledge if that is not God’s will for us, we will never stop serving God in any capacity he gives us, and this training ground called earth is preparing us for eternal service and love in God’s arms.

As I walk this frightful road like a back alley loaded with cut throats, I fear not. In prison, God has blessed me similarly to Joseph in Genesis, while he was captive so long. Success, gifts, blessings, people, God has given me and so much more. God’s word is all true, all right, all perfect, does its job, and in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, I thank God and praise him, hallelujah with all my heart for what he’s done with me. Praise Jesus Christ for all things. Thank you Jesus!

 

Testimony Part 1 – Steven Wei

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“Testimony”

Part 1 of 2

By Steven Wei

I want to make clear to anyone reading my testimony that I give full credit to Jesus Christ. I need to tell my transition by starting with who I was where I was and who and where I am now in Christ.

The typical prisoner is one with a thousand stories of debauchery, irresponsibility, heartlessness, a life of iniquity, self-defeating choices, enormous pride/bragging about the depravity and foolishness, full of hate, anger, scheming, predatory behavior. All self-justified with lies and world thinking. My testimony is not to relate to anyone who grew up on the street, abused, abusing, with no teaching. My testimony is a direct warning to tens of millions, if not hundreds of millions of Americans and Christians worldwide.

The deceiver has lulled people like me, my family, many in the churches I attended into thinking believing is enough, that heaven awaits you because you’re not as bad as those guys/gals on the news. That being a good worker, husband, father, son, friend, citizen, community member or any other term you can think of is what gets you to heaven. Wrong! Scripture is clear; you must be reborn in Christ, repent, forgive, agape love, obey, believe, sacrifice, die to your old self, learn God’s commands, seeks God’s kingdom. As James says, even the demons believe God exists and they shudder. In only the limited belief I lived for 38 years I was no better off than demons! Please come to Christ!

 

First, where I came from:

 

I was raised in a Christian household where our family attended church regularly and I saw my father reading and taking notes in his bible. However, my mom and we 3 kids never read our bibles. We believed God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit existed, that Jesus sacrificed himself on the cross for us. I did not know for the first 38 years of my life that I did not know nearly 100% of God’s word on all things. I was fooled by ignorance to think some completely wrong ideas on God, his desires, his workings, Jesus and same. I was fooled into thinking I was fine being a churchgoer, was going to heaven, was a “good guy” and proud of my good citizenship, achievements, conduct, goodness, bringing my family to church, feeling as if I didn’t need to join deeper into any church, just surface stuff like taking the kids so someone else can teach them. (This I weep about now – oh how I regret not knowing God’s word, not teaching my babies his word and love, not leading my wife in study, oh how I could hurt myself with angry pain at not taking my wife and children, kneeling and leading them in prayer and praise to God). I was a fool. I was lost. I didn’t know it.

 

For many years, I felt direct pull commuting home from work, to read the word, and literally once home, I got all into the crazy fun of my family and forgot – wiped clean from my mind – to open the word and read. My wife – how deeply, gently, sacrificially I loved her. My 5 babies all of whom I watched over every day and night, cleaning, playing with, laughing together. How I forgot God who gave them to me as I put them above him.

What happened to drive me to my knees:

When I was arrested in May 2010, I was confused, pure anxiety, anguish, the gnashing of teeth as mentioned in the bible. I’d never spent a moment of my life living a criminal lifestyle. I’d never had any contact with authorities except some speeding tickets. Accused of terrible things I did not do, I lost my mind. My wife wept over the phone on the free 30 second holding tank call, telling me, “They’re forcing me to divorce you!” instead of just telling her, “Honey, I’ll always love you and our kids with everything I am and never forget that!” I just went into a quick set of instructions for damage control not realizing even what all I’d been accused of, nor what was coming. Within days, my parental rights were stripped of me. I wept openly, I began to spiral out of control emotionally. Back in my cell over the first 4-6 weeks, I cried out to God nearly 20-22 hours a day, slept in nightmares maybe an hour, sobbing on my knees to God, pleading “Please help me, please don’t take my loves away, please help them save me, take me, kill me please.” I did not eat but crumbs. My lifestyle of sitting at a desk job for over a decade, commuting 10-12 hours a week, eating kids’ leftovers, raised my weight up to 205 lbs. I’m a short guy. I lost 75 lbs in the first 3 months of jail. At that time, I was facing a minimum of 24-57 months but the attorney my siblings go me was trying to reduce it to county. I was not going out of my mind over that. I was broken beyond words by my wife divorcing me and my parental rights being taking from me. I tried killing myself twice.

God began changing me…

(to be continued…)

Sanctuary – Steven Wei

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“Sanctuary”
By Steven Wei

As I have experienced my personal rebirth, and have been immersed into the fiery furnace and lion’s den (metaphorically) from Daniel, I am continually assaulted of the senses by the most vulgar, hate-filled, disrespectful, foul, nasty, uncaring, speech and activity surrounding me. As a person that had never condoned or appreciated any of that in the world, I’d only surrounded myself on the outside with family and friends who were of like mind and spirit of love and kindness. However, me personally, I still used foul vulgar speech when angry or in derogatory terms mostly when no one was in earshot. So I was not walking in God’s will even though I thought I was as a ‘good guy’.
So after rebirth in the County jail, I began to change on my insides, and no longer can stand or desire to use vulgar, foul terms. However, as I noted above, the environment is literally so flooded by it, I can find no respite from it but at church.

Now, this particular facility is one of the few in Michigan that has a separate sanctuary building on site. I did not know. I am appalled the rest of the MDOC has no churches for men changing their lives in Christ.

The building is a real church and when we gather, we sit in pews, we sing, we pray, we worship, we hear the word, we participate, we feel the Holy Spirit moving, I weep.

I tear up simply because I am in what is a sanctuary from the hostilities. An island among storm seas of depth and darkness.

I was able to go 3 times per week for 1 hour each. Administration just cut off the Thursday morning bible study for their reasons. So I have 2 hours per week with Christian men, worshiping together.

For 5 ½ years now, since arrest and rebirth, I have been only able to release privately my emotions for a few months in the county jail, and since then I am surrounded by either bunkies or others everywhere I go.

Imagine not being able to be alone with God quietly away from all others and foulness for 5 ½ years straight.

So when i go to church, which so many Americans take so for granted (like I did) out in the world, and fail to go, fail to worship together, fail to hear the word, or sing praise to god, I weep for the rest of America because I know what it’s like to need it, want it, and seek it, and have it kept from you.

Stop taking church for granted and go. I’d go every day and night 7 days a week if I could, I’d lay down on the altar and sleep there, never leaving if I could. I never stop being in sanctuary if I could.

Learn from others experiences, and understand, empathize, and see your life and others around you. Ask for God’s wisdom.

Changes in me – Steven Wei

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“Changes in me”
By Steven Wei

Changes in me through Christ’s love & guidance include a deeper understanding of humanity in its fall and my participation in sin. I’ve mentioned my prior mindset in previous testimony being one of trying to be a good guy on my own, really having no direction except basic societal moral principles and behavior. I succeeded in those from society’s perspective and therefore had wrong ideas and thoughts on my salvation and standing in eternity. When I read the Word and my eyes finally opened and my heart broke in shame, I’d realized I’d broken every commandment many times over. I’d describe my view of myself as a loser, a piece of garbage, a scumbag, a miscreant who deserved nothing but eternal destruction and I could do nothing but beg God for his mercy and realize no matter how good I’d looked to society my whole life, in God’s eyes, I was filthy with sin in my life from my wounded heart. Now I was wounded even more so by my own realization of self-based failure and seeing myself in the mirror that the Word put up for me in Jesus Christ our Saviour and how he explained the Word to us. I knew now how badly and why I so needed Jesus and His sacrifice. My pride was obliterated; total shame and humiliation. Complete de-molecularization of myself. I wanted to kill myself just for failing to live up to God’s will and standards. I didn’t want that. I asked God through Jesus to take over my life and make me like him, and I continue to pray for God yet today (5 ½ years later) to walk me talk me guide me think me, and move me and mold me and shape me and make me like Daniel, like Moses, like David, like Jeremiah, Isaiah, etc. I cannot stop, I cannot feel comfortable any longer without the Word regularly, without worship, without the need to be in constant communication with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. I thank and Praise Jesus Christ, and Yahweh, and Holy Spirit as one-in-three and all in me and me in them daily and nightly.
I have more blessings than I can count and I know it. I love you God, I love you Jesus, hallelujah.

Naked – Terri N. Reese-Green

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“Naked”
By Terri N. Reese-Green

Praise the Lord everybody. Today’s sermon will be called “Naked.” In the very beginning of the Bible I saw Adam and Eve naked in the garden. Why were they naked? And why did they clothe themselves with fig leaves? Of all the other leaves of the garden the used fig leaves. Fig leaves represent something. Genesis 2:25; Job 1:21; Matthew 25:36; Hebrews 4:13. But read also with me in 1 Tim 6:7 for we brought nothing into this world and we will carry nothing out. Eccl 5:19 says these are gifts of God. also I found in the book of Revelation 3:17 that everything is naked before God and everything we have God gave it to us, for His purpose. Who understands that the commandment of the Lord is life. Without it we are all naked and out of the garden.

God bless you, Terri

Jesus Saves – George K. Walker

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“Jesus Saves”

“This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners: of whom I am chief” 1 Timothy 1:15.

In 1 Timothy 1:15 Paul tells us in part “that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners.” Not only was Jesus born to die for us but He was to die for those that lied, stole, committed murders and for those that didn’t care about Him and wanted to see Him killed.

I feel like Paul when he talks about Jesus dying for sinners “of whom I am chief.” I am in prison for murder but thanks be to Jesus I too am forgiven. In verse 16 Paul says: “Howbeit for this cause I obtained mercy, that in me first Jesus Christ might shew forth all longsuffering, for a pattern to them which should hereafter believe on him to life everlasting.” I am thankful to God for His mercy because I need it. Now He uses me as an example of how loving and forgiving He is – thank you Jesus!

God Bless,
George Kevin Walker

Christmas Blessings – George K. Walker

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“Christmas Blessings”

“Give unto the LORD the glory due his name; worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness” Psalm 29:2.

I pray that you and your family are celebrating the birth of our LORD and Savior Jesus Christ. No matter what is hurting on you or how much money you owe, the birth of Jesus trumps all of that. David tells us in Psalm 29:2 to “give unto the LORD the glory DUE unto his name.” Believing in the birth of Jesus Christ is a part of our foundation to having eternal life. I say a part of our foundation because the big part is believing in HIS death and resurrection on the Cross, without His birth HE could not have died for us. So to celebrate THE ONE who was born to die for us so that we could live is an honor. It is the least we could do for Jesus who has done so much for us.

In here some of the older members of the Church are coming together and buying food to serve to the younger men in our unit. We are going to pray for them and tell them that we are doing this to celebrate the birth of Jesus and to extend that Love to them. We will tell them if they want to talk or need something they can come to us. Even in here things can be done to show the love of Jesus. We have some mighty men of God in here. We all have our struggles but we serve a forgiving a Father that tells us to confess our sins and He is faithful and just to forgive us. Jesus made a way for us to be reconciled to the Father and that is why we should celebrate HIS birth. Have a “MERRY CHRISTMAS!”

Celebrate Jesus!
George Kevin Walker

P.S. MY PRAYER for you and your family IS THAT GOD WILL continue to STRENGTHEN YOU and that you will WALK – IN HIS BLESSINGS and favor FOR YOUR LIFE – in JESUS’ name – Amen!

Lessons Learned – Steven Wei

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“Lessons Learned”
By Steven Wei

For most of my life from childhood on to adulthood, my belief in God and Jesus and a few biblical principles, stories, and commands are all I knew of God’s Word. I lived in a world that expected, fostered, and prided itself on self-accomplishment, self-reliance, and self-achievement.

I’d always been a shy person being short. I had a good intellect, and was able to learn things quickly. I grew up with very little adult example of dedication to the Lord or study of His principles, so my examples were all of those who pride in doing for self. My Uncle Jack was probably the most conduct-oriented person in my family as example. I married my wife, with a work history and prior relationships of experience fixing everything, putting out fires, troubleshooting, analysis in labs, software quality assurance, and technology. So when we kept going through much difficulty with her health, our financial problems, and custody battles with her abusive ex-b/f (father of older two) and our 3 new babies together, we had a lot of problems that I never went to God about except when Mel’s life was in danger. So I had spent my whole life doing everything myself and had no idea how to live in God’s faith.

When the storm hit, and God began teaching me, I learned all the good in life was Him, and all the bad was me, or other humans.

I was humbled and I asked God, to get rid of my pride, so He did. I asked God for more wisdom – more than Solomon – and He’s working on me. I asked God for faith like Jesus, and I’m moving in the right direction. I kept learning what God wanted, what He desired, because I wanted to please Him and do right for God, both in thanks and from my heart of repentance and need for forgiveness and love. I kept learning His word, and His will as much as I could take in, and kept praying for God to give me what He wanted me to have or to be. I tell Him yet today, I know I’ll make mistakes if left up to me, so please take over and do things His way – the best way. I tell Him still today, I know I will sin if He leaves me in horrible challenges, so to please guide me and keep putting His word in my heart, give me courage to obey in all circumstances, and teach me to love Him/Christ with agape love, as well as all others the same. I need work every day. I need His help to change. I ask and ask and ask for God to help me be the pot the Potter makes and serve Him.

I ask for everything, and He continues to change and help me. God is real, the word is real, works, is true, and believe in Him.

I love Christ and God. Amen

But the Greatest is Love – Matthew Nawrocki

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“…But The Greatest Is Love”
By Matthew Nawrocki

(Written in 2011 during a period of transition from county jail to quarantine and then a prison facility)
[Inspired by 1 Corinthians 13]

Faith, Hope, and Love
But the greatest is Love
It doesn’t put itself above
It is kind, it doesn’t judge

With Faith there is no worry
With Hope there’s no more stress
But when Love finds us in our hearts
That’s when we know we’re blessed

Love bears all things, it believes all things
When we have it in us, our hearts will sing
It hopes all things, endures all things
It makes us feel like kings and queens

Love thinks no evil, it puts itself in the rear
It’s kind, it doesn’t envy, Love casts out all fear
Love is the greatest gift we can share
So find Love while you can, spread Love while you’re here

The Five Finger Ministry – Terri N. Reese-Green

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“The Five Finger Ministry”
By Terri N. Reese-Green

Praise the Lord everybody. Today’s sermon will be called “The Five Finger Ministry.” This ministry could be so much bigger but I would like to call it the five finger ministry because it deals with five of the names of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. The first name will be called Wonderful because He is wonderful in all his works. Here are some scriptures. Matthew 7:22; Acts 2:11; Matthew 21:15. Next He is called my Counselor because I am under His advice. See Romans 11:34; Matthew 21:15; John 18:14; John 11:53. Next He is the Mighty God because of the inherent ability to perform anything. See Matthew 25:15. He has dunamis power. Next He is called the Everlasting Father because He is eternal. See Romans 11:20. And last of all He is the Prince of Peace. Prince means author and peace means to be quiet, be still. See Matthew 20:25, 20:31; Revelations 1:5; Luke 14:4. Praise God and as we go through these scriptures let us love on Him today and every day in the five finger ministry. God bless you and Merry Christ-mas. He is a wonderful gift I know.

Terri