1 Peter 4:7 (NIV)
The end of all things is near. Therefore be alert and of sober mind so that you may pray.
Charles Colson visited the Humanita Prison in Sao Jose dos Campos Brazil during the 1980’s and was astonished how Christ changed inmates lives.
He wrote: “When I visited Humanita I found the inmates smiling—particularly the murderer who held the keys, opened the gates, and let me in. Wherever I walked I saw men at peace. I saw clean living areas, people working industriously. The walls were decorated with biblical sayings from Psalms and Proverbs. Humanita has an astonishing record. Its recidivism rate is 4 percent compared to 75 percent in the rest of Brazil and the United States. How is all this possible?”
He saw the answer when his guide escorted him to the notorious punishment cell once used for torture. “Today,” the guide explained, “the block houses only a single inmate.” They walked to the end of a long concrete corridor. The guide put the key in the lock. But before he opened the lock, he turned to Colson. “Are you sure you want to go in?”
“Of course,” Colson answered, “I’ve been in isolation cells all over the world.” The guide opened the lock. Slowly he swung open the massive door, and there they could see the prisoner in the punishment cell: It was a crucifix, beautifully carved by the Humanita inmates.
When we are reminded of Christ’s finished work on the Cross, we can be self-controlled in all things.
Dear Lord, thank You that You paid for our sins. Help us live a self-controlled life that is pleasing to You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.