It is my desire to simply sit down and chat with you in this month's view. My face to face visits are rarely with anyone but family and close friends. I would like to sit down personally with you as a free man, but that is going to take more prayer. Jesus says, "All things are possible to him who believes." 1
Speaking of Parole
I imagine that many of you think I have Life in prison without the possibility of parole, but that is not true. I have been eligible for parole since September 1976, but I have not been found suitable because of my crime. The irony is that my crime will never change, but one things we do know, people do change: "The goodness of God leads men to repentance." 2
I have been in prison for almost 37 years, since 1969, which seems like only yesterday. Jesus made Himself known to me early in my incarceration , so the burden of prison has been fairly light and easy. 3 The comfort of the Holy Spirit has made the difference during these many years.
Recently, the LORD showed me my life in a 30/30/30 split. It was almost my 30th birthday when I received my salvation. I have now been saved for a little over 30 years, and I believe there is still another 30 good years of ministry in me providing the Lord does not return first. I promise to proclaim the testimony of Jesus, whether inside or outside.
From the Mail
It is impossible for me to answer all the letters that come my way. They are very positive letters, but it is very hard to discern the motive behind some. At one time I answered most, but it turned out that many of my letters were being auctioned on the Internet. This was disheartening!
I have never profited off my crime, and I guess I set the same standard for everyone else as I do for myself. When people write deceptively just to get a response in order to profit, I choose not to be involved. I don't desire to feed the bears.
This web site will have to do for our correspondence. I appreciate hearing off the many class projects on my crime, because something may be learned from the history of the "Manson madness." I hope that my books help to answer all the questions I receive from students doing their projects.
Pay It Forward
If you haven't noticed, I have a new Recent Work called "Pay It Forward!" It originates from the idea of the movie by that name. If you saw it, you may recall the idea that if every person who experiences something good would just "pay it forward," we could change the world.
My friend, Dr. James Richards of Impact Ministries sparked the idea in me. It is the Holy Spirit that gives me illumination that I pray will be a blessing to you. If it were not for the anointing, I would not be writing anything.
It is our Heavenly Father that "Paid [the Blood of Christ] Forward" for our sins before the foundation of the World. He promised that Jesus would bruise the head of Satan, which He did on the cross 2000 years ago. He "Paid [Salvation] Forward" for all who will receive His gift. He "Paid [Heaven] Forward," and Jesus is there preparing our mansion right now. 4
My Private Life
Believe it or not, I have a private life, and I thank you for your understanding. I pride myself in being fairly transparent on the web site, but when it comes to my family, that is private. I am very blessed to have a family. My mom and dad are now with Jesus, which I share about in the Monthly Views. Other than that, I'll just say that everyone in my family is doing wonderfully.
It is very important to spend private time with your Heavenly Father in prayer. This is how I keep my thoughts right. When I was young, my mom said I told my dog "Collie" my problems, but now I talk to God. And He talks to me through His Word, many times in an audible voice. 5 I also hear His small voice in the depths of my heart giving me direction. It is wonderful to experience His creative ability.
It is in my room that I get privacy even in prison. My roommate and I make sure we each get time alone for private periods of serenity. God's grace is sufficient for living in this 6' x 11' space together. 6 We ask for your prayers, that God would use us more and more to reach the lost living around us.
Mending the Body
If you have noticed, Mending The Body Behind Prison Walls is a ministry vision for prisoners. It is available on this website. On September 30th, we will have had a special outreach day to the lost, with the giving of testimonies and the sharing of food in many of the housing units.
I ask for your prayers, that those who receive Christ on that day, will grow in His grace and in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 7 That the Body of Christ will reach out with compassion, and disciple those they have led to the Lord with care and concern for their growth. "Remember those in prison as if you were their fellow prisoners." 8
If you are corresponding with prisoners around the world, it would be a "seed planted" to mail them the Mending The Body vision. It can be easily set up in almost any prison housing unit with immediate results. I find many Christians prisoners have no vision, and it takes only a nudge to get them started in the right direction to plant seeds for a bountiful harvest.
Blessings Upon You
It has been such a joy chatting with you for the past couple of hours. I know it did not take you that long to read it, but it did for me to write it. This has been a labor of love, and one that has brought me great joy. I hope you can tell!
I'm sure this outreach does me more good than it does you. It has been therapy for me over the years. Not only to have a voice, but to feel useful as a man with a mission and to humbly realize that if the Lord can use me to touch people, He can use anyone.
This is why I encourage everyone to "Pay It Forward." I have experienced this good life in Jesus, and I just want everyone to know what it is like. It does not cost you a thing, but remember it cost Jesus His life to free you from your sin, so you can enjoy this life full of the Holy Spirit. This is where my strength lies.
Let Me Pray For You!
"Heavenly Father, touch in the Name of Jesus, everyone who is blessed by this ministry. I pray you give them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that You Father may be glorified. Amen!"9