Corrections is a science. There are people whose job it is to make charts and graphs of factors that contribute to criminal behavior, as well as the things that help people leave their criminal lifestyle behind for good. The goal is to help society better understand crime and how to fix it.
Recently I met with some folks that were working on a particular problem in the science of corrections. They knew that life change comes down to “intrinsic motivation,” a desire for change that starts from within, but they couldn’t figure out how to measure what gives someone intrinsic motivation in the first place. There just weren’t any statistics. To better understand the problem, they came to Prison Fellowship, knowing that we see this kind of inward transformation all the time in our ministry to inmates.
My friends were having a hard time because they were trying to analyze the supernatural – the unique power of God’s Holy Spirit to transform hearts. The Holy Spirit’s work is impossible to deny but hard to put under a microscope. As Jesus told Nicodemus, a man trying to pin down God’s movements, “The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit” (John 3:8). Though God’s ways are mysterious, we know that lives change, families are restored, and prisons become less violent when He first renews the spirits of men and women from the inside out.
I invite you to become a part of God’s life-altering work behind bars. When you give your time, prayers, or financial resources to Prison Fellowship, you make your community safer by attacking crime at its root: the human heart.