Circle Prayer

One of my favorite moments of the week is the concluding prayer of our weekly Bible study out at the prison.

When our time is up we say "Circle up." And then the 50-60 guys get up and move to the edges of the room. We all hold hands and we ask aloud, "Who wants to pray us out?"

Someone volunteers and then leads the prayer.

Most of the petitions are for their families, for God to care for them and keep them safe. They pray for unity and revival on the unit, that God's kingdom come to where they live. They always pray prayers of blessing over Herb and I, and always for our families. And they regularly pray for the guards, which are essentially prayers for, if not enemies, than for the most difficult people in their lives. All this is offered up with both force and conviction. They pray boldly.

After the "Amen" the men come up to Herb and I for goodbye hugs. "Stay safe," I usually say, "We'll see you next week."

Like most of my posts, I wrote this post three months ago, before COVID-19. The prison went on lock-down in March and all religious programming has been suspended. Many of you have asked me about the Men in White, and sadly, I've been unable to see them face to face for many weeks. In a season of grief, this has been one of my deepest losses. Please keep the men in your prayers.

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