October 11, 2000
This evening we had an
awesome service and the Lord was truly moving. Some of us were on our faces before
the Lord crying rivers of tears and worshipping Jesus at a level and intensity I have not experienced in a long time. I believe that in the spiritual realm a major breakthrough had taken place.
I came out of this service totally refreshed and very determined to go right back to
the front-lines of this warfare. My heart has been fixed upon the Lord, my commitment
to serve Him renewed.
October 12, 2000
In the past several weeks
my prayer life seems to be growing stronger, and I have been led to make intercessory prayers for other nations at a level
greater than ever before in my walk with the Lord.
The world is in such upheaval now. Surely
any Christian can feel the “birth pangs” of the earth. At times I
could almost feel the fear, anguish and pain of many troubled hearts.
We have such a wonderful, awesome and “eternal” message of hope to share
with others, the gospel of Jesus Christ. How we need to share the story of our
Savior and the story of redemption more than ever before.
October 13, 2000
Mike T., a young man
in his 20’s from Carbondale, Illinois, wrote to tell me how my testimony
has been an encouragement to him and how that he had been delivered from his drug addiction.
He told me that he has been “drug free” for almost three years because of what Christ had done in his life.
My testimony had nothing to do with his salvation.
He was already a Christian when he came across my testimony and wanted to write to encourage me.
When I wrote back to Mike to thank him, I exhorted this young man to continue to follow
Christ no matter what. I know how strong the pull of the world is on Christians,
and Satan waits around every corner, so to speak, with a new temptation.
I also told Mike that America’s
prisons are filled with men and women who have been overtaken in their addictions, and who seem unable, this far, to break
free from their addictions.
I likewise told him that I can see the destruction that alcohol and other drugs have
on people because a majority of the men in prison are in for drug related crimes and for being vilest while under the influence
Fortunately for him, Mike was set free from his addiction without having to come to prison. He told me that he found his way into a “spiritual treatment program,”
something like Teen Challenge.
He is so fortunate not to have experienced imprisonment!
October 21, 2000
“And Jesus went about
all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every sickness
and every disease among the people.
“But when he saw the
multitudes, he was moved with compassion on them, because they fainted, and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd.
“Then he said to his
disciples, “The harvest truly is plenteous, but the laborers are few’ Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest,
that he will send forth laborers into his harvest."
I thank the Lord for all He has been doing in the prisons. I thank Him also for Christians who’ve been faithful and willing to answer the Lord’s call. For when Jesus was walking on this earth, He went everywhere touching hurting lives
with the love of God. His heart was moved with compassion when Jesus saw the
scattered multitudes…a multitude of people with a multitude of problems!
And in this passage the Lord said something which touched me deeply. He looked at His disciples and said that they were to pray for more workers for the harvest field. To me this was amazing because, as the
Lord, He could have done it all Himself. He could have called battalions of angels
to come forth, appear on the scene, and then go out into the world to carry on all these works of compassion.
Instead He looked upon his human disciples (like He is looking upon us today) and told
them to do the work of reaching out to hurting humanity, and to pray for still more workers to come along. How humbling this is to realize that God has chosen weak man with all man’s sins and failings to
carry out such awesome tasks.
October 22, 2000
Yesterday’s Saturday evening service was awesome!
I received a wonderful filling of the Holy Spirit. The Lord really moved
in our midst, and it was one of the most anointed services we’ve had in a long time.
The message was about Paul and his apostleship and how the Lord used him to evangelize
the Gentiles. Anyhow, at the end of the service the minister from New Jersey was told by the Lord to call some of us up front to the
altar to receive prophetic words.
I was the first one they were led to call, and of course I had no idea what would be
spoken over me. The message from the Lord was that I was to start writing, and
that the Lord was from this moment going to begin opening many “great doors” for me to share my testimony via
Terrific! I was jumping up and down in my
spirit. This was a very happy moment for me after such a long journey through
the wilderness of disappointment and discouragement.
The minister asked me to lift my hands in the air.
She then anointed my hands with oil and told me to “start writing.”
She said that the testimony was to go “throughout the world.”
Well North Pole here I come! Ha! I left the chapel so energized. I still feel wound-up and
I could hardly sleep last night. Now I know how Elijah the prophet felt when
he ran from Beersheba to Mount Horeb in forty days on only one meal (1 Kings
November 1, 2000
for me comes from Psalm 66:18. “If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord
will not hear me.”
This one verse from Psalm 66 sure is powerful.
The Lord cut me deep with this one today. The Bible says that God’s
word is like a “two-edged sword”.
Iniquity and a personal relationship with the Lord just do not go together. Sin and salvation do not mix. It’s like oil and water. It has to be one or the other. At least
these are some of the insights God gave me as I pondered this message while in my cell.
And this verse alone was enough to bring me to my knees crying out for forgiveness, repenting,
and allowing the Lord to cleanse and renew me.
Many times we do not need to hear a long sermon to bring conviction. Today it just took one verse from the Bible. It was all the
In the gospel accounts of the Life of Jesus, I can see that He was able to completely
communicate what He needed to say with just a few words or only one sentence. This
is a good lesson for me.
November 6, 2000
Today I received a letter
from a Christian in Minnesota who had this to say:
cannot express what a blessing receiving your last letter was to me. On the day
you wrote (October 25th) I went into the hospital for surgery… I
received your letter while still in the hospital. I was so miserable there and
your letter brought me great comfort.
had prayed the night before that God would send me comfort and He did, as He always does, in His own special way.
“I thank God that He has servants like you, who are being led daily by Him to minister to the hurting.”
Well what can I say except “Thank you, Lord Jesus!” This is what He has called me to do, and this is just about what He has me to do every day. It is all God, and He gets all the glory.
November 21, 2000
Today I received a letter
from a friend who is going through a tough time of discouragement. In my response
back to him I said that we have to keep trusting in Christ and allow Him to sustain us through difficult times. I told him that we “cannot go it alone”.
This world is too cold and cruel and the devil is too demented and evil for a Christian
to make it without Jesus being first in his or her life.
And right now I am watching our first real snow fall as I am typing this journal entry. Here in the foothills of the Catskill Mountains winter
often comes early and uninvited.
Also, I was encouraged to see that ABC-TV just had a short special about Wicca and Witchcraft
in America. It was aired a short time ago during the 6PM “Prime Time” news.
While much of it was sympathetic and neutral (unfortunately), thankfully there was one
minister who, when interviewed for his 30 second slot, stated that “all witchcraft” is inherently evil. That all of it ultimately leads to deeper forms of spiritual bondage, and sometimes to outright Satanism.
I was glad to see that the minister was allowed to speak clearly and intelligibly, and
that no one tried to make him look “crazy,” as the media often tries
to do with sincere Christian ministers.
I can only say “Amen” to all of this!
November 23, 2000
Today being “Thanksgiving”, I was able to spend all of the morning
in my cell reading my Bible and praying. It was good to be off from my job assignment
and to have some quiet time with the Lord.
Earlier this afternoon I wrote to Don Dickerman,
a dear brother in Christ who lives in Texas. The Lord had me share this with him:
“Don, America is entering a dark period, and in the
midst of the trials, storms and ‘downturns’ that are ahead, many foundations will be shaken and many will be yanked
away from their complacent lifestyles..
“Be ready to be used by the Holy Spirit to
minister to all the lost and hurting, both those in and out of prison.”
The Lord also gave me a Scripture passage for Don, and could not this message be for
all the body of Christ? Surely I believe so. 1 Thessalonians 5:1-10.
December 6, 2000
The time seems to be
passing so quickly. In less than a month 2000 will be history. I pray for this nation and for our churches. Perhaps the Lord
will give us a little more time to repent and to turn away from the sins that displease Him.
Lately I have been doing okay in some areas but in others I have been struggling. I have strong faith, so this is not the issue.
It is just that for now God’s hand of chastening is resting upon my life.
In His word it says that when we as true Christians are bearing fruit, He will “prune”
us so that we can bear even more fruit. Pruning is painful! And God is talking about developing the “fruits of the Spirit” in our lives (John 15:1-15).
You see, the Lord wants to make us sweeter so that our lives can be a blessing to others. A fruit tree grows its fruit for others to enjoy; it doesn’t grow fruit
for itself. These ‘fruits of the Spirit’, then, are for others to
taste the goodness of God through our lives.
So at this time I have been in great internal pain.
Jesus is now doing and inside job on me. And while this might be painful,
in the end it will make me into a better Christian, more holy, more yielded to Him, and more loving.
December 10, 2000
DEADLY THAN CANCER”
The time is passing so quickly. It’s
hard to believe this year is almost over. Last year at this time many were worrying
about “Y2K”. But Y2K was never the problem. Rather the problem was and still is “sin”!
It is sin that is killing our nation, wrecking havoc in the Church, and hurting and destroying
our families and even our very lives.
This is what the Lord was showing me today
and what I am putting down in my personal journal. Today God sent me to Isaiah
chapters 58 and 59. The Lord really opened up these passages to me this morning.
It’s time to scream “Sin”! It’s
time to cry out that there is sin being practiced among God’s people, and these sins will eventually ruin us. However, there is still time for each person to repent and to turn away from their sins and to get closer
to the Lord.
And I too need to turn away from sin. For
it is sure going to kill me if I keep doing the things I’ve been doing. But
God is merciful. He wants us to be holy and obedient, and to be spiritually prosperous. He wants our lives to be as a “well watered garden” full of joy, peace,
Yet as is often the case, our sins are standing in the way of our spiritual progress. They are quenching the Holy Spirit in us, are separating us from having a good
relationship with Jesus Christ. And, as I said, these sins (whatever they are)
will eventually damage each of us and will cause the church to be robbed of her power and sacred anointing. Her light of hope will be weakened unless we, by the power of the Holy Spirit, stop practicing sin.
Sin always kills!
1 John 1:9
December 14, 2000
God sure has a sense of humor! Only
the Lord can put a former Ku Klux Klan leader and a Jewish guy like me together as brothers in Christ.
Earlier last year I began to receive mail from a man, Roger, from Alabama. He loves the Lord and was happy to share his testimony with me.
Roger was an influential person within the ranks of the Klan. But then God got hold of him and turned his life around. Today
he, along with his wife, Jill, attends many “all black” and mixed churches where they invite him to share his
God completely changed his heart and today Roger has nothing but love for blacks, Jews,
and everyone else. It has been a joy to get his letters which are always so full
of energy and encouragement.
Several weeks ago Roger asked for my prayers because presently active members in the
Klan have been threatening him as well as his family. Right now a large church
in New York City is praying for him.
He also likes to share my testimony in the churches.
His wife, who ministers at a local youth shelter, also shares my testimony with the teenagers.
It’s the same old story all across America,
even in rural Alabama: teens caught up in dugs, gangs, depression,
struggling with peer pressure, feelings of hopelessness, broken and dysfunctional homes, and their parents who are struggling
with their own problems.
And it is the same old problem: “Sin”!
There’s sin in the cities, and there’s sin in the suburbs. Sin
is wherever people are because it is in our hearts and is a part of our fallen nature.
Only through Jesus the Messiah can sin be taken away.
December 17, 2000
A friend from Minnesota
wrote a letter recently asking me what to tell a young woman whom he’s been ministering to. This woman is a schoolteacher who lives in Togo, West Africa. Her family has begun to persecute her and
show hatred towards her for giving her life to Christ. She comes from a family
of witches and, according to my friend, both of her parents and her sister are high ranking village witches.
He is in contact with this “sister” via e-mail. After some prayer the Lord gave me Matthew 5:43-46 and Mathew 10:34-36.
I told Mark that he needs to tell her to pray for those family member, that they get saved and delivered. Prayer changes things and God can soften any heart.
The above passages from the Gospel of Matthew deal with being hated, even by family members,
for following Jesus. The Lord says we are to love our “enemies”,
to do good to them and to lift up each one in prayer.
He will e-mail
all this back to her. And I know that this dear sister in Christ will overcome
because “Greater is He that is in us, than he that is in the world.” (1
December 19, 2000
“But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise…
and the lowly things of the world, and the
things which are despised…”
I am so thankful and happy that the Messiah has chosen me to be one of His witness and
a minister of His grace. If it were up to mankind, I would not be chosen. Instead I would be rejected and thrown into the deepest, hottest hell.
But God who delights in showing mercy has come to earth to save sinners. The central themes of the Holy Bible are that man is a sinner and is in rebellion towards God. But that the Lord loves people so much that He came to earth to die for our sins and pay the penalty for
our wicked deeds, so that we might be forgiven and restored to fellowship with Him.
Wherever there is hatred, Jesus comes to bring love.
Wherever there is racism, Christ comes to bring brotherhood. Wherever
there is pain the Lord comes to bring healing. And wherever there are sinners,
Jesus Christ comes and offers His forgiveness.
No sin is to great, no deed is so wicked that it cannot be washed away by the blood of
the Savior. No life is so hopeless that he or she cannot be given a new start.
Another year is almost here and the Lord has brought me safely through. I have no complaints. He has been more
God has been blessing the services and Bible studies at the prison I am in. I have a born again chaplain who loves the Lord.
Earlier today, in addition to our morning worship service, we had a special baptismal
service in the afternoon. All the new Christians were baptized, and each got
the chance to share his testimony with everyone else just before he would be immersed in the water.
I had tears in my eyes as I listened to each young brother give God the glory. Each man was thankful for what God is going to do with each man in the future as they
stay faithful to Him.
During the baptismal service I had my hands full because I was one of the volunteer “mop
men”. We have a full size tank and there was water all over the place. I had to help mop the chapel as well as the corridors leading to the men’s room
where each inmate had to go to change his clothes.
Then to top it off, the siphon pump which was supposed to pump all the water out of the
tank and into a utility sink quite a distance away decided to break down. It
would not pump the water back out of the tank. So me and the chaplain plus a
few other inmates had to get buckets and empty it a bucket at a time.
It took several hours and it was a lot of work but it was fun. I had a good time praising God, working, and fellowshipping with the brethren. We also sang many songs together.
December 26, 2000
As this year closes out
I have been spending time thanking the Lord and meditating upon all the good things God has done for me this year. There were many trials of my faith, but there were also many
There were also some personal losses of several dear friends, Christians who were a blessing
to me and who shared some of their loves with me. They prayed for me often, helped
with the ministry, and gave my spirit a lot of encouragement when I was at my low points.
This year my brothers Pat Cicala and Dick Williams went home to be with the Lord, as
well as my dear sister in Christ, Angela Hewitt.
I am so grateful to each of them and so thankful for their love. I am a better man and a better Christian because of these three, and I look forward to the day when we
will all meet again around the throne of glory.
While the passing of our friends and family may be painful for us, I know that our loss
is heaven’s gain. They’ve already received big homecomings. The Lord was right there behind the veil to greet each one as they stepped into eternity. For Pat, Dick, and Angela, their trials, troubles and struggles are all over.
I cannot wait for the day that I too will be able to see my Messiah face to face, to
look into Jesus’ eyes and tell Him that I love Him, and to thank Him personally for all He has done for me.
I also want to give my Savior a big hug. He
is truly King of Kings, and Lord of Lords. Not many people are so privileged
to hug a king. But Jesus is a King who will gladly receive hugs.
December 31, 2000
There is one particular
inmate whom the Lord has put in my heart to encourage and help. His name is Michael. He has no one. Long ago abandoned by
his family, Michael is doing a lengthy sentence for setting fire to a youth detention center which caused the death of another
Michael has been a wanderer on this earth since his youth. Presently he is assigned to the Intermediate Care Program Unit because of his emotional problems and his
anger. But the Lord said to befriend him and he really is a nice person. He’s not a Christian (yet) but
I feel he’s getting there. I’ve been working one-on-one with Michael
for more than a year.
This morning he was in church which is the best place for him. We sat together as we always do when he comes. Thus far he
only comes on Sunday, but this is a start. And today he actually behaved himself. Sometimes he acts up in church and makes noises.
“Lord, give me patience!”
This past Friday, however, I found Michael in the recreation yard. It was bitterly cold and we had to keep moving to stay warm. At this time he was in one of his moods and
he lashed out at me again and again. What anger!
He’s really hurting inside.
I spent the afternoon talking to him about Jesus Christ.
Yet in spite of the abuses I sometimes take, it will be worth it in the end to one day see Michael surrender to Christ
and be saved from his sins and delivered from his demons. Man truly is a sinner,
but Christ is a savior. Amen!
And this will be my last journal entry for the